Since a foreign Currency Exchange Rate (CER) changes 24 hours a day, Monday thru Friday (simplified example), how does USAA determine what CER to use for my ATM withdrawals?


Hi GringoCO,

I am tracking down an answer for your question and will post when I have an update! Thank you!

Dear GringoCO,

All ATM and Debit card Foreign Transaction Fee is 1% Of Transaction Amount.


*Applies to debit card or ATM transactions with a merchant or ATM in a foreign country, whether the transaction is originally made in US dollars or converted from foreign currency.



Thank you!


I know about the 1% Foreign Transaction Fee but that's not what I asked. Let me try with an example. If today the Colombian Peso trades in a range of 3,050COP to 3,170COP, what is the COP that will be used tomorrow when I withdraw $1 U.S. unsung my ATM card?

I am sorry I misunderstood your initial question! I will send your inquiry over to the bank and update when I receive an answer, Thank you!


Thank you for your post in the Community. Please note that USAA does not quote conversion rate information with our members. USAA will use a currency conversion rate based on the date the item was processed, and not when it is transacted. USAA Federal Savings Bank may consider many factors in setting its currency exchange rates, including without limitation exchange rates charged by other parties, desired rates of return, market risk, and credit risk.


I hope this answers your question. Thank you.


No it doesn't. I think it is important that USAA discloses what the conversion rate is. I have done small amounts and calculated the currency rate and they are favorable. However, I do believe it is important that USAA provides this information to its members as opposed to just  a favorable rate. I am speaking to a rep now to get a more complete answer. The answer I received was that USAA uses multiple banks since they themselves do not do international wires. Therefore, it depends on what bank they use. 

I agree. Its a bureaucratic non answer. Do they give you the straight published daily rate? Do they use a mid market rate? There are a number of international transfer options available these days and they all somehow seem to be able to quote an actual rate coupled with any actual fee.


One the surface, you may  think hey great,  I can send an international wire for just over $50, but it is only after the fact when you see how much was actually taken out of your account to cover the XXX of other currency you wanted sent that you will be able to back into what it really cost. If the reason quoted is because 'USAA is using multiple banks", then in reality, you are paying a Transfer Fee as the USAA profit portion for them handing it off to one of several banks they subcontract with to do the actual transfer. Since USAA is a large institution, you can be sure that they know exacty what "plus" will be added to the official exchange rate by their subcontract banks. 




We appreciate you sharing your thoughts via Community. Our current process for foreign currency exchange, is that we do not quote currency exchange rates for our membership. We will share your comments with our Member Feedback Teams.


Thank you for being a valued USAA member.

The bureaucractic speak which is vague and avoids a straight answer to the question is distasteful and not fitting for USAA, which seems to operate 'above the fray,' shall we say, in most other ways. YOu need further transparency and some way to DISCLOSE your rates, perhaps with some algorithm that is updated at 9am every morning, or some such thing. We can be sure USAA knows quite clearly what fees it is charging members to run these exchange transactions, or what percentage of the amount they shave off the top. It's ok to profit, please