Best Credit Cards For Traveling To Europe In 2022 (2022)

Want to travel to (or live in) Europe? You'll need a good credit card to make your purchases. Here are the best travel credit cards for a European vacation.

There are countless travel credit cards on the market, but not all of them provide the same benefits.

Even among the best travel credit cards, some may be better than others for specific trip plans.

If you’re planning a vacation or extended stay in Europe, some credit cards stand out above the rest.

We’ve put together a list of thebest credit cardsfor traveling toEurope and explore why they’re perfect travel companions to anyone heading across the Atlantic.

As you explore these and other credit cards, it’s important to consider your top priorities when it comes to rewards, features and fees.

What’s Ahead:

Overview: Best credit cardsfor traveling toEurope

Credit CardBest For
Chase Sapphire Preferred® CardTravel sign-up bonus
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit CardGenerous all around rewards program

Best Credit Cards For Traveling To Europe In 2022 (1)

In A Nutshell

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card sets the standard for travel rewards by offering an excellent 5x points on travel purchases through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3x points on dining and 2x points on all other travel purchases. And points are worth 25% more when you redeem travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® – That means the killer 60,000 point sign-up bonus is worth $750 towards travel.

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Apply Now

On the Secure Website

In A Nutshell

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card sets the standard for travel rewards by offering an excellent 5x points on travel purchases through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3x points on dining and 2x points on all other travel purchases. And points are worth 25% more when you redeem travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® – That means the killer 60,000 point sign-up bonus is worth $750 towards travel.

Read review

  • Excellent

Poor 500-599

(Video) 3 Best Travel Credit Cards of 2022 | Fly to Europe with the best credit cards for travel rewards

Fair 600-699

Good 700-749

Excellent 750-850

What We Like:

  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • Enjoy benefits such as a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, 5x on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3x on dining and 2x on all other travel purchases, plus more.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get complimentary access to DashPass which unlocks $0 delivery fees and lower service fees for a minimum of one year when you activate by December 31, 2024.

Intro APR Purchases

N/A

Intro Term Purchases

0 months

Intro APR Balance Transfers

N/A

Intro Term Balance Transfers

0 months

Regular APR

17.49% - 24.49% Variable

Annual Fee

$95

Apply Now >>

(Video) Best Travel Credit Cards of 2022

Flying to Europe can be expensive, so it can help to have a credit card that allows you to shop around. The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card not only allows you to book flights through Chase’s travel booking site, but you can also transfer your points earned to a handful of European airlines, including:

  • Aer Lingus
  • British Airways
  • Air France
  • Iberia
  • KLM
  • Virgin Atlantic

You can also transfer your points to a handful of international hotel chains, which can also help once you’re in Europe. Other card highlights include:

  • 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening
  • Earn 5X points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3X points on dining, 2X points on all other travel purchases, and one point per dollar spent elsewhere
  • Get 25% more valuewhen you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • $95annual fee

What to watch out for when using the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card abroad

Unless you’re spending a lot on dining and travel purchases, your base rewards rate overseas will be just one point per dollar. That doesn’t stack well against some of the other cards on our list.

Read ourChase Sapphire Preferred® Card review orsee card details/where to apply.

Best Credit Cards For Traveling To Europe In 2022 (2)

In A Nutshell

Capital One’s leading product is the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card and it shows. A one-time 75,000 mile bonus after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months is flat out AWESOME, and 2X miles per dollar spent is about as good as it gets with a travel rewards credit card.

Read review

Apply Now

On the Secure Website

In A Nutshell

Capital One’s leading product is the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card and it shows. A one-time 75,000 mile bonus after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months is flat out AWESOME, and 2X miles per dollar spent is about as good as it gets with a travel rewards credit card.

Read review

  • Good/
  • Excellent

Poor 500-599

Fair 600-699

Good 700-749

Excellent 750-850

What We Like:

  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

    (Video) The BEST No Annual Fee TRAVEL Credit Card?

  • 2X miles earned for $1 spent on all purchases

  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®

  • Enjoy a one-time bonus of 75,000 miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on every purchase, every day
  • Miles won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how many you can earn
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Enjoy two complimentary visits per year to Capital One Lounges or to 100+ Plaza Premium Lounges through our Partner Lounge Network
  • Earn 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of trip options
  • Use your miles to get reimbursed for any travel purchase—or redeem by booking a trip through Capital One Travel
  • Transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs

Intro APR Purchases

N/A

Intro Term Purchases

N/A

Intro APR Balance Transfers

N/A

Intro Term Balance Transfers

N/A

Annual Fee

$95

Apply Now >>

The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card doesn’t offer a lot of flashy features or extra perks, but it does provide maximum flexibility.

For starters, you’ll earn two miles per dollar spent on every purchase. This means you don’t have to worry about how international merchants code their transactions.

Second, you can redeem your miles earned for just about any type of travel. Simply use the card to book travel then use your rewards to get a partial or full statement credit for the purchase.

Here are a few more card details:

  • Sign-up bonus of 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
  • Annual fee of $95.

What to watch out for when using the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card abroad

When redeeming your rewards, some things you consider travel may not be coded that way. For example, you may not be able to use your rewards to cover your costs for theme parks and similar attractions.

(Video) Best Travel Credit Cards 2022

Read ourCapital One Venture Rewards Credit Card review orsee card details/where to apply.

Why you should use a credit card abroad

Whether you’re going to Europe or anywhere else, it’s a good idea to bring a credit card with you. Here are just a few ways a credit card can make your travel plans easier:

  • Credit cards are convenient: You don’t need to worry about getting cash from the ATM or finding a place to hide it.
  • Credit cards offer the best fraud protection: If you lose cash while overseas, it’s gone. And you lose a debit card, thieves can drain your checking account before you have the chance to report it stolen. With credit cards, nothing is taken from your checking account and the credit card issuer will generally remove the charges before your statement date.
  • You can earn rewards on purchases: Rewards credit cards offer rewards on every purchase you make regardless of where you are.

What to look for in an international credit card

The main thing you want with a card you’re planning to take overseas is no foreign transaction fees. The typical fee is 3% of every purchase you make abroad, which can add up fast.

You’ll also want a card that uses Visa or Mastercard as its payment network. Discover and American Express aren’t widely accepted overseas, so you don’t want to be caught without a payment method.

If you find a Discover or American Express credit card that you really like, make sure you have a backup card that’s a Visa or Mastercard.

Finally, make sure your credit card has an EMV chip on the front of the card. Most major credit cards come with these chips from the start, but some smaller banks and credit unions may not have upgraded their cards yet to include the chip.

Which travel card is right for your Europe trip?

There’s no one best credit card out there for everyone, so it’s important to understand what best fits your situation. As you consider these and other travel credit cards, take a look at your European travel plans, as well as your personal preferences.

Also, consider your spending habits.

Lastly, all of these cards require either good or excellent credit. So, if you have fair or poor credit, you may want to work on improving your credit score before applying for one of these. As you do your due diligence and take the time to research all your options, you’ll find the card that suits you best.

Read more

  • European Budget Airlines: Everything You Need To Know To Save On Your Next Trip To Europe
  • Traveling Abroad? The Best Credit Cards For International Travel

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About the author

Total Articles: 17

Best Credit Cards For Traveling To Europe In 2022 (3)

Ben Luthi

Total Articles: 17

Ben Luthi is a personal finance and travel writer who covers credit cards, debt, credit, investing, and more. He's currently studying to become a CFP® and trying to keep up with his two young kids. You can connect with Ben on Twitter or his website.

FAQs

What card is best to use in Europe? ›

The 5 Best Travel Money Cards for Europe in 2022
  • Wise Multi Currency Card for best exchange rates.
  • Revolut Travel Card as the best all rounder.
  • Bankwest Breeze Platinum Credit Card for lowest interest rate.
  • ING One Low Rate Credit Card with no annual fee.
  • Macquarie Transaction Debit Card for ATM withdrawals.
Jan 11, 2022

Is it better to use a credit card or debit card in Europe? ›

key takeaways. European travelers should always have some cash on hand; getting it from an ATM abroad is usually the easiest, most advantageous way. Credit cards are generally accepted, especially in cities; but check with your card issuer about foreign transaction fees and currency exchange fees.

Which is the best credit card for Travellers? ›

Best Travel Credit Cards in India for 2022
Credit CardBest ForAnnual Fee
SBI Card ELITELow Forex MarkupRs. 4,999
HDFC RegaliaTravel booking with pointsRs. 2,500
HDFC Bank Diners Club PrivilegeTravel booking with pointsRs. 2,500
Air India SBI SignatureCo-branded benefits (Air India)Rs. 4,999
6 more rows
Jul 13, 2022

Is it cheaper to use credit card or cash abroad? ›

Spending is almost always cheaper than withdrawing cash when you're on holiday. If you've a top overseas credit card, spending is almost always cheaper. Even on cards with no cash withdrawal fees, you'll usually still pay interest on the withdrawal until you pay it off. This goes double for non-specialist credit cards.

Which bank has no foreign transaction fee? ›

1) Chase Bank

Chase Sapphire Checking customers do not incur any fees, including foreign transaction fees, for withdrawing cash from an ATM abroad.

How do I avoid international transaction fees? ›

In this article:
  1. Watch Out for Conversion and Transaction Fees.
  2. Open a Credit Card That Doesn't Have a Foreign Transaction Fee.
  3. Exchange Currency Before You Travel.
  4. Open a Bank Account That Doesn't Charge Foreign Fees.
  5. Pay With the Local Currency.
  6. Finding Cards With No Foreign Transaction Fees.
May 6, 2020

Which credit cards are accepted in Europe? ›

The most widely accepted credit cards in Europe are Visa and Mastercard credit cards. Visa and Mastercard are the two most widely accepted credit card networks, not just in Europe but worldwide. So, any card on either network will work everywhere you want to use it.

Is a travel money card worth it? ›

Why use a prepaid travel card? It's safer. A prepaid card is similar to having cash on you but it's safer than carrying around too much or leaving it in your hotel even if it's in the room safe. This is the main advantage of carrying one of these cards as your money is safe if the card is lost or stolen.

Is it better to use Visa or MasterCard in Europe? ›

American credit cards work throughout Europe (at hotels, larger shops and restaurants, travel agencies, car-rental agencies, and so on); Visa and MasterCard are the most widely accepted.

Should I get euros before going to Europe? ›

Keep in mind that this step is up to you and doesn't always get you the best exchange rate—it's not necessary to obtain euros before traveling to most European countries. Once you're in Europe, you can use your debit card at an international ATM machine.

How can I avoid ATM fees in Europe? ›

Many international travelers encounter foreign transaction fees while making purchases or withdrawing cash from an ATM in a foreign country. The easiest way to avoid a foreign transaction fee is to use a debit or credit card that waives foreign transaction fees while traveling abroad.

How can I get an international credit card? ›

All you need to do is inform your bank about certain specifics, i.e. the currency, daily usage limit, time period etc. Once you have informed your bank, subject to sufficient funds available in your account, your bank will activate international usage on your card.

What is an international credit card? ›

An international credit card can be used pretty much anywhere in the world. It's a card that doesn't charge foreign transaction fees and includes an international chip and PIN. Not all cards that work in the U.S. work when you're traveling internationally.

Which is the best credit card in the world? ›

1. American Express Centurion Card. The American Express Centurion Card is the most exclusive credit card in the world and commonly known as the “Amex Black Card.” Launched in 1999, American Express has kept it in a shroud of uncertainty, giving it a very high level of status in the minds of consumers.

How much cash should I bring to Europe? ›

Any natural person entering or leaving the EU and carrying cash of a value of €10 000 or more is required to declare that sum to the competent authorities of the Member State through which he/she is entering or leaving the EU.

How can I get cash in Europe without fees? ›

Bank ATMs usually do not charge usage fees and are generally more secure, as a thief is less likely to target a cash machine near surveillance cameras. Many European banks place their ATMs in a small entry lobby, which protects users from snoopers and bad weather.

Should you get euros before traveling? ›

no need. In most cases for Americans heading off to major European destinations, my answer is to just say “no” to buying euros in advance in the States. Unless you have a great bank that doesn't charge for the service — and gives real exchange rates, not lousy inflated rates — those euros will be overpriced.

Is Capital One accepted in Europe? ›

Yes, you can use your Capital One credit card in Europe. In fact, you can use a Capital One card nearly anywhere in the world where credit cards are accepted, as Capital One issues credit cards on both the Visa and Mastercard networks.

Is Visa debit card can be used internationally? ›

Visa debit cards are regarded as the most globally accepted debit cards for all kinds of online and electronic transactions. These cards can be used within and outside India. The VISA ATM network is spread throughout India and abroad.

Is it better to exchange currency or use credit card? ›

Use your credit or debit card when possible

Fees aside, using your credit or debit card is probably your safest bet for getting an exchange rate that's closest to the market rate. But be aware that while your card's issuer bases its exchange rate on market conditions, it does set its own exchange rate for transactions.

Is it better to withdraw euros abroad? ›

Avoid exchanging money at airports and hotels - they usually have the worst rates. If you want to withdraw cash from an ATM when you're abroad, always do it in the local currency. This guarantees the mid-market rate. However, your bank may charge ATM fees and foreign transaction fees (more on this later).

Is it cheaper to exchange money or use ATM? ›

It is almost always cheaper to withdraw cash abroad at an ATM than to exchange it at a bureau de change at the airport or in tourist areas. If you want to buy foreign currency while still in your home country before your travels, then we recommend signing up for a Wise Multi-Currency Account.

How can I use my US credit card in Europe? ›

When Europeans buy something with plastic, they insert their card, then type in their PIN. Despite some differences between European and US cards, there's little to worry about: US credit cards (Visa and MasterCard) generally work fine in Europe.

Is Chip and PIN required in Europe? ›

Much of Europe has already implemented a chip-and-PIN system. That means that using credit cards and debit cards embedded with a microchip and require a Personal Identification Number (PIN code) for transactions.

Can I use my Visa debit card in Europe? ›

Can I use my debit card in Europe? Do I need a pin for my credit card in Europe? These are the most common questions I get about using debit and credit cards in Europe. The simple answer is yes, your debit and credit card will work in Europe.

What type of card are they using in Europe? ›

Visa And Mastercard The The Most Widely Accepted Credit Cards. Visa and Mastercard are both accepted nearly everywhere in Europe that takes credit cards.

Is Chip and PIN required in Europe? ›

Much of Europe has already implemented a chip-and-PIN system. That means that using credit cards and debit cards embedded with a microchip and require a Personal Identification Number (PIN code) for transactions.

Which debit card is best for international transactions? ›

Best International Debit Cards Offered by Indian Banks
  • SBI Global International Debit Card.
  • ICICI Bank Sapphiro International Debit Card.
  • Axis Bank Burgundy Debit Card.
  • HDFC EasyShop Platinum Debit Card.
  • Yes World Debit Card.
  • HSBC Premier Platinum Debit Card.
Aug 3, 2022

Can you use your debit card in Europe? ›

Debit cards from any major US bank will work in any standard European bank's ATM (ideally, use a debit card with a Visa or MasterCard logo). As for credit cards, Visa and MasterCard are universal, American Express is less common, and Discover is unknown in Europe. Check your cards' expiration dates.

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