28 Degrees Platinum Mastercard vs travel money card vs debit card

How does the 28 Degrees Platinum Mastercard compare to other travel money options?

With no foreign transaction fees and no annual fee, the 28 Degrees Platinum Mastercard is designed to keep credit card costs affordable when you go overseas or shop online with stores that are based overseas. But there are many other options you can consider for foreign transactions. As well as other credit cards with 0% foreign fees and additional travel benefits, there are regular debit cards and travel cards you can use all over the world.

So if you're trying to decide whether the 28 Degrees Platinum Mastercard is right for your overseas spending, use this guide to compare its key features with those of other travel cards so you can find the right option for you.

What travel features and benefits does the 28 Degrees Platinum Mastercard offer?

The 28 Degrees Platinum Mastercard can help you save on fees when you're spending money overseas by offering 0% currency conversion fees. In comparison, most credit cards charge a currency conversion fee when you shop or spend overseas, which is usually between 2–3.4% of the total transaction. Depending on your travel plans, this could add up to hundreds of dollars over the course of your trip. Other key features of the 28 Degrees Platinum Mastercard include:

  • Annual fee. The 28 Degrees Platinum Mastercard has $0 annual fee for life.
  • Up to 55 days interest-free on purchases. If you pay your balance in full by the due date on each statement, you can get up to 55 days interest-free on purchases made with a 28 Degrees Platinum Mastercard.
  • No international ATM withdrawal fees. The 28 Degrees Platinum Mastercard offers a$0 international ATM withdrawal fee. However, local ATM operator fees may still apply, as well as cash advance fees and charges.
  • Cash advance rate. The usual cash advance fee is 3% of the cash advance or $4 (whichever is greater) and is charged when the card is used to withdraw money from an ATM. You'll also be charged interest at a rate of 21.99% p.a. from the date of the cash advance.

Compare no foreign transaction fee credit cards

Rates last updated February 21st, 2019
Name Product Foreign Currency Conversion Fee Overseas ATM Withdrawal Fee Overseas Cash Advance Fee Annual fee Product Description
Bankwest Zero Platinum Mastercard
0% of transaction value
2% of transaction amount or $4 (whichever is greater)
$0 p.a.
Offers a $0 annual fee, 0% foreign transaction fees, complimentary international travel insurance and a balance transfer offer.
28 Degrees Platinum Mastercard
0% of transaction value
3% of the cash advance or $4 (whichever is greater)
$0 p.a.
No foreign transaction fees on international purchases including international purchases online, together with a no annual fee.
ANZ Rewards Travel Adventures card
0% of transaction value
$225 p.a.
Receive 40,000 bonus Velocity Points, 2 yearly Virgin Australia lounge passes, plus enjoy $0 overseas purchase transaction fees.

Compare up to 4 providers

What features and benefits do prepaid travel cards offer?

Travel cards are designed to be used overseas or for shopping online with retailers that are based overseas. With these cards, you can avoid foreign transaction fees by loading and spending money in a range of foreign currencies. This also allows you to lock-in an exchange rate before you leave, meaning you'll know exactly how much travel money you have available on the card.

In comparison, regular debit cards and credit cards – including the 28 Degrees Platinum Mastercard – will convert foreign transactions using a daily exchange rate. As a result, you won't know your exact account balance until the transaction is added to your credit card or debit card's account. Other features and benefits vary depending on the travel card but could include:

  • Security. Similar to regular credit cards and debit cards, travel cards offer security features such as 24/7 emergency support and zero liability for fraudulent transactions made on your account.
  • A backup card. Some travel cards come with an additional card you can use if the main card is lost or stolen. Each card has its own number and PIN, which means you'll still have access to the account even if you have to cancel one of them.
  • Rewards. Some travel money cards, such as the Qantas Cash and Velocity Global Wallet Card offer points per $1 spent that you could use to redeem rewards such as flights or flight upgrades.
  • Account fees. While travel money cards do give you a way to avoid foreign transaction fees, make sure you look out for additional costs such as loading fees, ATM transaction fees or inactivity fees that could add to the cost of your card.

Compare travel money cards

Updated February 21st, 2019
Name Product Available Currencies ATM Withdrawal Fee Reload Fee Initial Load Fee
AUD $1.95, CAD $2.00, EUR €1.50, GBP £1.25, HKD $15.00, JPY ¥160, NZD $2.50, SGD $2.50, USD $1.95, THB ฿70.00, AED 6.50
Earn up to 10,000 bonus Qantas Points when you load foreign currency onto your Qantas Travel Money card before 30 September 2018.

Compare up to 4 providers

What travel benefits can I get by taking my debit card overseas?

It's easy to take your debit card with you travelling – there's no extra cards to sort out and you have access to the money in your bank account. While this makes taking a debit card convenient, it can also become expensive if your bank charges currency conversion fees and foreign ATM fees when you use your debit card overseas. Some of the other key features and benefits to look for include:

  • Account security. Both Visa and Mastercard debit cards offer zero liability policies that allow you to get a refund on any fraudulent transactions that are made. Depending on the card, you could also get 24/7 emergency support, fraud-monitoring services and transaction alerts.
  • Fee-free cash withdrawals. Unlike credit cards, you can use your debit card to withdraw cash from an ATM without being charged a cash advance fee or interest. Some debit cards, such as those offered by Westpac and St.George, also offer international ATM alliances that give you a global network of ATMs you can use to avoid transaction fees.
  • Currency conversion costs. Like credit cards, there are some debit cards that charge a foreign transaction fee when you use them overseas or online with an international retailer. Your transaction will also be converted into the appropriate currency based on the daily exchange rate, meaning you won't know how much money you have left until the transaction shows up on your account. This is the same with any credit card but could be avoided by pre-loading foreign currency onto a travel money card.
  • No interest charges. While you could be charged interest on your balance when you use the 28 Degrees Platinum Mastercard (or any other credit card), debit cards don't charge interest because you're spending your own money.

Compare travel debit cards

Rates last updated February 21st, 2019
Name Product Product Description Debit Card Access ATM Withdrawal Fee Monthly Account Fee Overseas ATM Withdrawal Fee Overseas Eftpos Fee
HSBC Everyday Global Account
No foreign ATM or transaction fees.
$0 monthly account fee.
Enjoy no minimum ongoing balance or transaction requirements and the flexibility to hold up to 10 currencies. Apple Pay and Google Pay available.
NAB Classic Banking with Platinum Visa Debit Card
$10 cashback on contactless purchases, $0 foreign transaction fee and complimentary travel insurance.
$10 monthly account fee.
Receive $10 cashback when you spend $1000 on contactless purchases. Complimentary travel insurance, transport accident insurance, purchase protection insurance and more when you meet eligibility criteria.
Citi Global Currency Account
Hold up to 10 currencies.
$0 monthly account fee.
Enjoy one linked debit card to hold up to 10 currencies and receive foreign currencies for free. Earn up to 2.25% p.a. interest on your AUD balance.
ING Orange Everyday Account
Receive a rebate on any international transaction fees and international ATM fees when you deposit at least $1,000 a month and make at least 5 card purchases.

Compare up to 4 providers

How can I decide between these travel money options?

All the cards on this page have their own benefits and features that will work for different types of people. For example, if you already have all the money you need for your trip, transferring it to a travel card or using your debit card could be convenient. If you want access to additional funds or some emergency money, on the other hand, a credit card could be a good option.

This means that choosing the type of card you take with you comes down to how you spend your money and the type of holiday or trip you're going on. In most cases, it's ideal to take a combination of cards and foreign cash so that you can make payments wherever you are. So if you're getting ready for your next trip now, start by comparing more travel money options here.

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59 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    BekFebruary 1, 2019


    When I went to the USA in 2017 I put my own money on my 28 degrees credit card so it was in credit. When I withdrew money from the card I selected credit account and got charged the 3% fee. If I had selected savings would I have still been charged the 3% fee? It says above that there are no Overseas ATM Withdrawal fees, so I’m confused as to why I was charged the cash advance fee when it was my own money?

    Your clarification would be great, thank you!

    • finder Customer Care
      ValFebruary 6, 2019Staff

      Hi Bek,

      Thank you for leaving a question. Yes, you are correct when it says there are no oversees ATM withdrawal fees. Using a credit card for cash advance on the other hand, will have a charge of 3% fee regardless if you select savings or credit upon withdrawal.

      The usual cash advance fee is 3% of the cash advance or $4 (whichever is greater) and is charged when the card is used to withdraw money from an ATM. You’ll also be charged interest at a rate of 21.99% p.a. from the date of the cash advance.

      Hope this helps.


  2. Default Gravatar
    lucySeptember 3, 2017

    if I preload the 28 degree card with my money then will I attract a cash withdrawal fee if I select “savings account” at the ATM?

    • finder Customer Care
      HaroldSeptember 5, 2017Staff

      Hi Lucy,

      Thank you for your inquiry.

      If you preload the account with a positive balance you won’t get charged interest on purchases and cash withdrawals as you’re using your own money.

      I hope this information has helped.


  3. Default Gravatar
    DavidJune 8, 2017

    Is 28 degrees MasterCard widely accepted in England, Paris and Italy?

    • Default Gravatar
      JonathanJune 8, 2017

      Hi David!

      Thanks for the comment.

      Absolutely! As long as the MasterCard logo is on it.

      In case of cash withdrawals, You can use the Global ATM Locator on the MasterCard website to know the nearest one in a certain area.

      Hope this helps.


  4. Default Gravatar
    WarwickJune 5, 2017

    28 degrees MasterCard are hopeless when it comes to replacing a lost and stolen card .. be prepared to wait 7 to 10 days ( who can afford that timespan when overseas) and don’ t believe any of the promises they make about forwarding a replacement card to your hotel overseas. It’s happened to me twice now 1st time I requested a companion card for my employee visiting Tokyo on a business trip and second time a replacement card for my card swallowed by a parking station pay station.
    Why do they promise you all will be well .. after waiting forever, I found that in both instances the card had not even been sent .
    Why does it take such an inordinate amount of time and why is the process so inefficient ?

    • Default Gravatar
      DanielleJune 6, 2017

      Hi Warwick

      Thank you for reaching out to us here at finder.com.au. We are a comparison website and general information service, we’re more than happy to offer general advice.

      We are sorry to hear that. The 28 Degrees credit card offers a round-the-clock support service for lost and stolen cards. If anything happens to your account, it would be best to call them through their hotline 1300 552 079 in Australia or +61 1800 005 809 overseas.

      I hope this helps.


  5. Default Gravatar
    RichardApril 28, 2017

    Hi Finder Team, can you please confirm my understanding …

    I’m traveling to Europe and comparing 28 Degrees and my existing CBA credit card. Both use Mastercard. And both say exchange rates are set by the same MasterCard link you provided.

    So, does that mean that the same transaction on each card would hit my statement using the same exchange rate … so the only difference is the international transaction fees (charged by CBA but not by 28 degrees)?

    • finder Customer Care
      LouApril 30, 2017Staff

      Hi Richard,

      Thanks for your question.

      If both credit cards use MasterCard exchange rate, you’ll get the same exchange rate for the same transaction done at the same time.

      Since you did not mention what type of CBA credit card you are holding, I can’t determine what differences it may have with 28 Degrees MasterCard.

      You may want to check the following features of 28 Degrees MasterCard and compare them with the features of your CBA credit card:

      – The 28 Degrees MasterCard is among a handful of credit cards that don’t charge for International transaction fee.

      – It also doesn’t charge for international ATM withdrawals.

      – It attracts a cash advance fee of 3% of the cash advance or $4 (whichever is greater) when you withdraw money from an ATM.

      – It offers up to 55 interest-free days on purchases.

      These are some of the important features that can affect overseas transactions.


  6. Default Gravatar
    March 14, 2017

    Hi Sally,

    I have been preloading my 28 Degree card with AUD when travelling to Europe. When I draw this cash out at an overseas ATM it asks “do I accept the conversion rate?” I get the cash whether I click yes or no but can not work out from my statements if one is a better (cheaper) choice. What should I select?


    • finder Customer Care
      MayMarch 16, 2017Staff

      Hi Walter,

      Thank you for your inquiry.

      If you will use your 28 Degrees MasterCard overseas, the conversion/exchange rate is determined by MasterCard International by the time you access the cash, so we may not be able to tell when you can get a better rate.


  7. Default Gravatar
    BusterSeptember 29, 2016

    I am spend USD 20k per month online and am looking for ways to reduce my fees and costs which about to over $1000 per month. I was about to switch from using my CBA credit cards to using a CBA travel card as it had no intl transaction fees. It turned out that the rate they use on their travel cards meant that i would be worse off than using my credit card, even with 3% fees.

    28degrees have told me that they use the exchange rate found at xe.com (which is the ‘mid rate’ with no buy/sell differential) and also charge no fees. They were, however, unable to provide me this important detail in writing.

    Are they telling the truth?

    • finder Customer Care
      SallyOctober 17, 2016Staff

      Hi Buster,

      Thanks for your question.

      According to the 28 Degrees Mastercard website (in the frequently asked questions section), the exchange rate is determined by MasterCard International on a daily basis in accordance with daily foreign exchange fluctuations. The conversion will involve two calculations if the transaction is made in foreign currency. First, it will be converted to US dollars and then converted to Australian dollars for listing on your transactions. You can calculate the conversion rate using the Mastercard currency conversion tool.

      The foreign exchange rate is calculated by MasterCard International on a daily basis according to daily foreign exchange fluctuations. The conversion will consist of two calculations if the transaction is made in foreign currency – it will first be converted to US dollars and then converted to Australian dollars for listing on your transactions. You can calculate the conversion rate using the MasterCard currency conversion tool.

      I hope this has helped.



  8. Default Gravatar
    bluSeptember 26, 2016

    hello i will be going to peru only, for 4 months and am needing to find best card to use there. What might be the best debit card and travel load card available with least fees namely the atm use and currency convert fees. thx

    • finder Customer Care
      LouSeptember 26, 2016Staff

      Hi Blu,

      Thanks for reaching out.

      If you are travelling to Peru, you can compare your prepaid, credit and debit card options here.

      I hope this helps.


  9. Default Gravatar
    WendyMay 28, 2016

    When overseas and using the 28 degrees card as a debit card with own funds , which option do you choose when transacting at an ATM savings or credit and if using the card for credit do you choose credit?

    • finder Customer Care
      SallyMay 31, 2016Staff

      Hi Wendy,

      Thanks for your question.

      If you’re using the card for a credit purchase, select “credit”. If you’d like to withdraw funds that are loaded on your card, try selecting “Savings” at the ATM. Please note that while your withdrawals won’t incur the standard interest rate, you will be charged a cash advance fee of either 3% or $4 (whichever is greater).

      I hope this has helped.



  10. Default Gravatar
    SharonMay 12, 2016

    does the card offer complimentary travel insurance o/s.

    • finder Customer Care
      SallyMay 13, 2016Staff

      Hi Sharon,

      Thanks for your question.

      Unfortunately, the 28 Degrees MasterCard doesn’t offer complimentary travel insurance.

      You can compare cards with complimentary travel insurance here.

      I hope this has helped.



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