February 16, 2023
On the subject of pre-paid cards for international travel, I investigated the CIBC/Air Canada Conversion Visa. Loading funds when the exchange rate is favourable to spend while travelling seems appealing. BUT CIBC is holding your cash to its profit until you travel, there apparently is no way to off-load funds if you have € left over and won’t be back in Europe any time soon; CIBC has your money. If your card has insufficient € but US$ or £ or whatever it will draw on the other currency and charge at least 2.5% foreign conversion fee on top to the exchange rate! Not FX-fee free as advertised.
Seems like this card benefits CIBC much more than consumers. Might be useful for people travelling to multiple countries every month but not for vacationers going on a couple of trips per year.