Are new cards chip and pin or chip and signature?


For my Europe travel, a chip and pin is more useful than a chip and signiture. Can USAA provide one?


The email announcing the change to Visa said "no more foreign transaction fees". Does that mean the foreign exchange fee still exists?




I would also like to know the answer to this question. The MC you just replaced with this Signature Visa was a true Chip and PIN card. 

Hi Psychology,


Thanks for reaching out in Community. I will pass along your question to our bank team who will be able to answer this for you.


Thank you for posting in Community. USAA provides Signature Preferred Chip Card; however, some merchants require the use of the PIN. USAA has opted to use signature when the merchant does not have a preference. In addition, the Foreign Transaction Fee no longer exists on credit card accounts. Thank you.


So far, I can report that the new USAA Visa cards are chip and signature NOT chip and pin. This may work fine in the US but for USAA members living overseas this is a less than optimal solution. My old USAA Master Card was a true chip and pin. Back in 2013, I had to specifically request the chip and pin card be mailed to me to replace my previous USAA Master Card but it worked throughout Europe! Great! 


I received my new USAA "Signature Visa" in the mail today. I called USAA and asked the representative if the new USAA Visa was chip and signature or chip and pin. He assured me I could make purchases using the pin. While on the phone we set up a new pin. I used to new card at a merchant this afternoon and the merchants keypad device spit out a paper receipt that required signature, so not a pin. Very disappointed. 


Then to the subway, I stopped to buy a ticket at the vending machine that I have used successfully many times with my old USAA chip and pin Master Card. The vending machine would not compete the transaction. I entered the pin when required, but the vending machines screen displayed the message, " Financial institution does not support this transaction type."  So, I had to dig for enough coins to pay for my ticket. 


I will try the card again tomorrow; however, at this time it looks like USAA is not supporting its members who are living overseas. 


So, my question is: Will the new USAA Visa card support chip and pin purchases? 

Thank you for posting in Community. Your Visa chip Credit Card can be accepted overseas and is ready for international use. The card can be used for both signature and PIN transactions. This was done as merchants in the U.S. have yet to fully convert to the Chip technology.

CynthiaUSAA, I'm not sure you fully understand.


Like the poster above, my previous USAA credit card was a true chip-and-PIN Mastercard. Two years ago I moved to Europe, and this was incredibly useful. Everywhere accepted the card by inserting (not swiping), and entering the PIN (never signing.) 99% of all merchants/restaurants in Europe are set up for this along with 100% of all public transportation kiosks.


The "new" USAA World Mastercard I received 6 months ago and the "new new" USAA Visa Signature card received this week are both ONLY "chip-and-sign" cards. EVERY merchant/restaurant I have used them in now print out a slip of paper for signature, which is both time-consuming and frustrating. Luckily I have not yet had the experience of the poster above, but if these cards cannot be used in automated kiosks they are nearly useless to those of us who live in Europe.



NOVA Brewer,
Thank you for your post. We understand the need for Chip based cards while members are overseas. However, we needed a solution that would be beneficial for members stateside as well as abroad. The Chip and signature cards allow members the freedom to utilize the card in the U.S., where most merchants have not adopted chip technology, and internationally. The international merchants should be able to run your transactions as a Chip transaction.

If you would like to discuss this matter in greater detail, please contact one of our banking specialists at 1-800-531-8722. Thank you for your post.

Has anyone tried to use the new Visa card in an unattended machine? 


Cards can support many CVM (Card Verification Method) types. The CVM list on the card contains the different CVM’s that the card supports and when each should be used. The terminal then will select the highest applicable CVM that both the terminal and the card support.  So it would easily be possible for USAA to issue a card that supports both signature and PIN.


If the card can only function as chip-and-signature and does not support chip-and-pin that means the card will not work at gas stations, train ticket vending machines, etc.

Mike T,

Thank you for posting in the Community. The cards issued have Chips available but are signature preferred as most U.S. merchants have yet to adopt and switch to Chip and PIN technology. This gives your card the flexibility to be used stateside as well as internationally based on how individual merchants can accept transactions. If the merchant does not have a preference, or accepts both options, the signature option will be used.


If you have additional questions regarding Chip and PIN cards, please contact a banking specialist at 1-800-531-8722.