Post Office warns holidaymakers over credit card charges

| August 2, 2012
Post Office warns holidaymakers over credit card charges

The Post Office is warning travellers to be aware of charges for using their credit card abroad.

Travellers who don’t have a fee-free card could be charged as much as 2.99 per cent each time they use their card, which could bump up their bill when they return home.

Research by Post Office Credit Card reveals that travellers could tot up £135 million in unnecessary fees.

Last summer nearly half of holidaymakers used their credit card abroad, with men spending £494 each on average, while women spent £428.

The Post Office warns that nearly a quarter of holidaymakers do not know how much they will be charged for overseas transactions.

On average people are charged £12 in credit card fees, although this varies significantly for different age groups.

The over 55s run up fees of £5 on average while those between 18 and 34 years incur an average fee of £23.

Az Alibhai, Head of Credit Cards at Post Office, said: “Savvy sun-seekers should opt for a fee-free credit card which will leave them with that extra bit of holiday money in their pockets.

“Holidaymakers should always insist on paying for items in the local currency as uncompetitive exchange rates mean that goods could end up costing more.”

In related news, UK security company MWR InfoSecurity has uncovered a security flaw which allows criminals to harvest customers’ financial information from credit card readers in stores.

The flaw allows hackers to reprogram the readers simply by swiping a card, enabling them to steal customers’ credit card information without the store’s or the customers’ knowledge.

Verifone is working on a software update to eliminate the security flaw and has submitted code for testing and approval.

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