Last updated, 31 July 2018.
Did you know UK holidaymakers pay over £125m in foreign transaction fees each year? Sometimes it’s impossible to avoid paying bank charges when you’re on holiday, but with a little research and planning, it is possible to minimise these charges or sometimes avoid them altogether. With that in mind, the following list provides information about which foreign Cash Machines (ATMs) are free to use, or charge the lowest fees.
About The List.
I have written the difficulty level of avoiding ATM fees next to the country in brackets, ranging from easy to impossible. For countries where it is easy to find ATMs that do not charge, I have left the list blank. (However, be sure to read the screen carefully before making a withdraw as there are always exceptions.) In all other cases, I have listed only the ATMs that are free to use. If no ATMs are free, I've listed the cheapest known option. If you find anything is incorrect or no longer valid, please let me know via the contact page, and I will update the list.
Sometimes an ATM will ask if you want to be charged in the local currency or your home currency. In these cases, it's nearly always better to choose the local currency. If the ATM charges you in your home currency, you will likely get a lousy exchange rate and may be charged additional conversion fees. Sometimes this is also the case when using your card to make purchases in shops and restaurants. It's worth stating, as you hand your card to the vendor, that you want to be charged in the local currency, as they often don't ask and just let the machine charge the card in its home currency.
A-Z Of Countries And The Best ATMs.
National Australia Bank (NAB) - Free, Max Withdraw 1000 AUD.* (*Unconfirmed).
Banco Do Brasil. - Free, Max Withdraw 500 BRL.
Cambodia. (Very Difficult).
Maybank. - Free*, Max Withdraw 1000 USD.** (*Free only for Visa cards. **Limit seems to be set by card issuing bank. I only withdrew 200 USD so I cannot confirm the 1000 USD claim).
Scotiabank. - Free, Max Withdraw 1000 CAD.
Banco Internacional. - Free, Max Withdraw 200,000 CLP.
Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria (BBVA). - Free, Max Withdraw 600,000 COP.
Davivienda. - Free, Max Withdraw 600,000 COP.
Hong Kong. (Easy).
Bank Of Baroda (BOB). - Free, Max Withdraw 25,000 INR.
State Bank Of India (SBI). - Free, Max Withdraw 40,000 INR.
Seven Bank (7-Eleven). - Free, Max Withdraw 100,000 JPY.* (*Magnetic strip card transactions and American Express cards are limited to 30,000 JPY).
Although most ATMs in Morocco do not charge fees, the following maybe exceptions that do charge foreign cards: Société Générale.
New Zealand. (Difficult).
Westpac. - Free, Max Withdraw 800 NZD.
Banco de Crédito del Perú (BCP). - Free*, Max Withdraw 700 PEN. (*Limited to one withdraw every 30 days).
Banco de la Nación (Multired ATMs). - Free*, Max Withdraw 400 PEN. (*Limited to one withdraw per day).
Caja Arequipa. - Free*, Max Withdraw 700 PEN. (*Only free for Visa Cards, MasterCards are charged 18 PEN).
South Korea. (Moderate).
KB Kookmin Bank. - Free, Max Withdraw 700,000 KRW.
Shinhan Bank. - Free, Max Withdraw 700,000 KRW.
Cathay United Bank. - Free, Max Withdraw 20,000 TWD.
Bank SinoPac. - Free Max Withdraw 20,000 TWD.
Aeon Bank. - Charges 150 THB*, Max Withdraw 20,000 THB. (*Lowest known fee).
Krungsri Bank. - Charges 200 THB*, Max Withdraw 30,000 THB. (*This bank has a higher fee but allows a larger withdraw which works out slightly cheaper).
United Kingdom. (Easy).
Military Bank. - Free, Max Withdraw 5,000,000 VND.
Saigon Commercial Bank. - Free, Max Withdraw 4,000,000 VND.
UK Cards Information.
Monzo Prepaid Debit Card (MasterCard). ATM withdraws are free up to £200 per month +3% thereafter. | Purchases in foreign currencies are free. (MasterCard exchange rates).
Nationwide Debit Card (Visa). Charge for withdraws from foreign ATMs £1 +2%. | Charge for purchases in foreign currencies +2%. (Visa exchange rates).
Revolut Prepaid Debit Card (MasterCard). ATM withdraws are free up to £200 per month +2% thereafter. | Purchases in foreign currencies are free. (MasterCard exchange rates*). *Though the exchange rate is usually excellent, I've noticed with some currencies it can vary widely depending on the time of day. It's worth checking the rate in the app before making large withdraws or purchases.
TransferWise Debit Card (MasterCard). Convert a currency using your card 0.35% - 2% | ATM withdraws are free up to £200 every 30 days +2% thereafter | Purchases in foreign currencies are free (MasterCard exchange rates).
US Cards Information.
Schwab Brokerage Account + Checking Account (Visa). Refunds all ATM fees incurred monthly. You must open a brokerage account, minimum investment $1000. US residents only.