Nationwide is upping the commission charge to use its credit and debit cards in most non-European countries today.

The fee rises from 0.84% per transaction amount to 1%, but the building society's cards still come with no commission charges within Europe (see the Cheap Travel Money guide).

Nationwide says it is passing on the fee Visa, the payment vehicle behind most Nationwide cards, charges it for processing transactions in certain currencies.

The charge to consumers had been due to rise on 1 July but it was delayed because Visa postponed its fee increase (see the Nationwide delays fee hike MSE News story).

A 1,000 spend outside Europe will now cost 10, instead of the previous 8.40.

Nationwide does not charge a cash withdrawal fee to take money out overseas on its debit cards (though the ATM may charge you).

However, you'll pay 2.5% of the amount withdrawn (minimum 3) on its credit cards.

Dan Plant, money analyst, says: "For years, Nationwide was the King of overseas payment plastic. Seeing fees added in, then creeping up is disappointing.

"However, despite there being better credit card deals available elsewhere, it's still far cheaper than using bog-standard cards."

Top overseas plastic

  • Debit cards. The Nationwide FlexAccount still levies the lowest fees, despite today's hike. However, the building society is trying to limit applicants to those who only use the account as their primary current account. Find out how to beat the clampdown.

  • Credit cards. The Santander Zero card levies no commission charge worldwide and levies no cash withdrawal fee, though it's unwise to take cash out on a credit card due to the high interest charges. Next best is the Post Office credit card which is commission-free worldwide, though you'll pay a 2.5% cash withdrawal fee (minimum 3).

Further reading/Key links

Spend less overseas: Cheap Travel Money
Get the top plastic: 0% Credit Cards, Best Bank Accounts