Amazon Visa Gone? Other Top Free Credit Cards when Travelling Out of Country

Effective March 15, 2018 the Amazon Visa will be no longer.  The Amazon Visa was a popular credit card in Canada for foreign exchange purchases, and card I exclusively used for spending outside of Canda.  Most credit cards charge a 2.5% surcharge on top of the foreign exchange rate when purchasing outside your domestic currency, but the Amazon Visa waived that fee, which was essentially a 2.5% bonus when shopping in foreign currency.

For example, if you are Canadian and travel to the US, most purchases while on your trip would be in USD. If you were to make the purchase with a typical credit card, the credit card would convert the purchase amount to your home currency (using the spot foreign exchange rate) AND add a 2.5% surcharge for the convenience of using a credit card. Maybe not a big deal at first, but if you regularly make USD purchases, the 2.5% surcharge is $25 for every $1,000 spent.

While the Amazon Visa was perhaps the most popular free option for cheaper foreign shopping, fortunately, there are other free options for Canadians. The picture on the top of this post may have given it away but from my research, there are three attractive credit cards in Canada that are efficient to use while traveling out of the country or making foreign currency purchases in general. Here are my favorites:

Best Credit Cards for Foreign Currency Purchases

1. Home Trust Preferred Visa

This is a viable Amazon Visa replacement that has no annual fee and no foreign currency conversion surcharges.  Like the Amazon card, it gives you 1% cash back as well.  The only downside is that it is a little light on insurances, so not likely a great replacement for your regular everyday spending.

The Roadside assistance freebie looks like a nice addon but make sure to check out the details.  From what I’ve read, it’s only 5km towing coverage which may not be enough.

Annual Fee: $0


  • 1% CashBack with no limits to your total rewards;
  • Roadside Assist membership at no extra charge;
  • No foreign currency conversion surcharges;
  • Purchase Security Insurance; and,
  • Visa Auto Rental Collision/Loss Damage Insurance.


  • Light on insurances.

2. Rogers Platinum MasterCard

This is a newish credit card offered by Rogers Bank, and really only geared towards Rogers customers.  Technically, it may not belong in this list because it has a $29 annual fee, but the fee is waived if you charge a Rogers service to the card (the first year is free regardless).

What’s attractive about this card is the 4% cash back on foreign currency transactions, which works out to be a 1.5% net benefit after counting the 2.5% FX surcharge.  What’s also attractive is the 1.75% cash back on everything else.  For a pseudo-free credit card, 1.75% cash back is huge.  Note though that the cash back accumulated is supposed to be used towards Rogers services, you can request a statement credit instead via telephone once a year.

Annual Fee: $0 if you pay your Rogers bill with this card $29 otherwise.


  • 4% cash back on all foreign currency transactions (note that they still charge a 2.5% on fx, so the net reward is 1.5% on foreign currency transactions);
  • 1.75% cash back on everything else; and,
  • $29 annual fee waived if you charge a Rogers service to the card (first-year annual fee is automatically waived for all users).


  • No insurance coverage.
  • Cash back must be used towards Rogers products or phoned into Rogers Bank in December to apply the accumulated cash back as a statement credit.
  • Must be Rogers customer to waive the annual fee.

3. Fido MasterCard

The Fido MasterCard is very similar to the Rogers MasterCard above, but with slightly less cash back and no annual fee to think about. 4% cash back on foreign currency transactions, which works out to be a 1.5% net benefit after counting the 2.5% FX surcharge.  This card also offers 1.5% cash back on everything else.  Note though that the cash back accumulated is supposed to be used towards Fido services, and you may be able to get a statement credit instead by phoning in (like the Rogers card).

Annual Fee: $0


  • 4% cash back on all foreign currency transactions (note that they still charge a 2.5% on fx, so the net reward is 1.5% on foreign currency transactions); and,
  • 1.5% cash back on everything else.


  • No insurance coverage; and,
  • Cash back must be used towards Fido products or phoned into Rogers Bank in December to apply the accumulated cash back as a statement credit.

Final Thoughts

The competition for foreign currency purchases is pretty tight and the best card will depend on your specific circumstances.  If you are a Rogers customer, I can see the Rogers MasterCard being more attractive than the rest.  The same can be said for Fido.

At the moment, I personally use a combination of three free cash back credit cards.  A capital one 1.5% cash back card (not available anymore) for my main spending; the 3% PC Financial World Elite Mastercard for grocery shopping (see promo below); and the Amazon Visa when traveling out of the country.

With the Amazon Visa going away and being an existing Rogers customer, the Rogers MasterCard is an attractive option not just for foreign currency purchases (4% cash back), but for everyday purchases (1.75% cash back).  The only downside is the non-existent insurance coverage which is why I’d need to keep my Capital One card on hand.

However, if you aren’t using Rogers/Fido services, then the HomeTrust Visa really is an attractive option. It’s essentially the Amazon Visa with the extra benefit of light roadside assistance and car rental insurance coverage.

If you are interested in the generous and free PC Financial World Elite MasterCard (3% cash back at Loblaws group of companies) mentioned above, check out the limited-time $100 gift card sign up bonus (plus $20 in groceries) if you sign up through Rate Supermarket. 

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FT is the founder and editor of Million Dollar Journey (est. 2006). Through various financial strategies outlined on this site, he grew his net worth from $200,000 in 2006 to $1,000,000 by 2014. You can read more about him here.
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PP Gal
2 years ago

I was approved for Rogers and Home Trust card. It didn’t take a long time to get the Rogers Platinum Mastercard and it is easy to do almost anything with the its online account. On the contrary, Home Trust gave me a hard time. In a nutshell, both cards give me ways to get around foreign transaction fee. I’ll make use of these cards for now and get as much cash back as possible. :-)

3 years ago

I guess this article should cross-reference this other article on a similar topic:

3 years ago

few things.
applications are being processed for home trust. I applied middle Jan and got an email today saying I was excepted. (middle March) one downside is only TEN transactions a day, no tap and you can’t change your pin

there’s a new CC called brim. site and company is new. no foreign transaction fee also. Google it. great cash back on places like Costco.

John Mccain
3 years ago
Reply to  FT

A bit dissapointed with the changes of the terms with the FIDO/Rogers card (they arrived with the first statement.

Will probably used at least until the end of the current terms and then based on the feedback about the new BRIM card, decide to keep the FIDO/Rogers card or replace it with the BRIM card.

3 years ago

I’m really sorry to see the Amazon card go. I used it exclusively when travelling outside Canada and never had a problem. I loved being able to qualify for the card online within about 5 minutes. Contrast the Home Trust Visa Card: I applied online on February 15 and I’m still waiting. When I phoned on March 5 to see how the application was going, I got a message saying that the wait time was 4 – 6 weeks. Unacceptable, in my opinion. Obviously I won’t have the card by March 15.

3 years ago
Reply to  Alan5948

Hey FT et al
Love the site and discussion!
Fyi…I just ordered the Rogers mc… and unfortunately the reward has been dialed back to 3% for forex transactions. Fee is gone tho. Cheers

John Mccain
3 years ago

It seems I’m not the only one looking for a replacement for the Amazon card!

The home trust has a big drawback that should be mentioned on the article: It’s not available for Quebec. Since I live in Quebec, Rogers bank will have my business!

This credit cards without an FX fee are a necessary tool on the wallet of anybody who travels outside of all inclusives, thanks for the article.

3 years ago

I used to use the Marriott Chase Visa to avoid the forex fees and charges but now I have a USD TD Visa card, and a US account. It avoids the non-preferential forex fees and this way I won’t have to worry about what the exchange rate is.

These are all very good alternatives, thanks for rounding them up!

3 years ago

Wow the rogers card does seem really good. I dont have any services with rogers though. Only got my 1 rbc cash back card, it could be better though. Thanks for the updated list.

John E. Strathglass
3 years ago

Check out Home Trust Preferred Visa: no fee and NO FOREX CONVERSION FEE, just like the soon-to-terminate Amazon Visa! I’ve applied.

3 years ago

The Amazon credit card is no longer available. Chase Paymentech and Amazon have severed ties and my credit card will be defunct this March. They will send me the cash credits I have accumulated and I need to create an online profile before it’s obsolete. I’m rather disappointed since I was planning on using this card when I travelled to the US this year.

3 years ago

Any new options in this area as the Visa card is being discontinued by Amazon. I cannot see anywhere on the website that they are get a new card but it would be hard to imagine that they wouldn’t.

I have found the Amazon card very useful. There are certainly online statements as well as paper. I have a TD USD Visa so only use the Amazon for Amazon and when in other countries. Have also used it to send money when children have been living in other countries.