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If you love to travel, then you may want to consider taking out the CIBC Air Canada AC Conversion Visa Prepaid Card. This tool can help you keep your travel budget in line and can be used wherever Visa is accepted.

Rather than carrying cash when you’re abroad, you can safely use a reloadable prepaid card that comes with all the funds you’ll need for your travels. The safety and security of the card’s advanced chip and PIN technology mean your money is safe regardless of where you shop. 

There are also no conversion fees when you make a purchase. You can lock in at a competitive exchange rate when you load the card, and the associated app can be used to load up to as many as 10 currencies at a time. 

Let’s take a closer look at the CIBC Air Canada AC Conversion Visa Prepaid Card to help you determine if this is the prepaid credit card for you.

CIBC Air Canada AC Conversion Visa Prepaid Card 

The CIBC Air Canada AC Conversion Visa Prepaid Card acts as a no foreign exchange fee credit card that can save you time and headaches if you’re an avid traveller. Rather than carrying cash with you in all sorts of currencies, this prepaid card allows you to load up your card and support 10 different currencies, including the following:

  • Canadian dollars
  • US dollars
  • Euros
  • British pounds
  • Australian dollars
  • Japanese yen
  • Hong Kong dollars
  • Turkish lira
  • Swiss francs
  • Mexican pesos

Basically, you’ll have the exact currency you need right on your card for you. There is no annual fee and the funds can be used in stores, online, and at ATMs to withdraw local currency wherever Visa is accepted.

How To Use The CIBC Air Canada Prepaid Card

Using this card is fairly straightforward. The main way to access the services is online since the only physical location where you can order the card is the Toronto Pearson Airport. As long as you have an internet connection and an available $25, you can get started. Simply follow these steps: 

  • Order the card: Either go to the banking center at the Toronto Pearson Airport or order the card online. You will need to load a minimum of $25 Canadian dollars to move forward. There is no credit check and the service is available to those who aren’t CIBC customers. 
  • Activate the account: The next step is to go through the account registration process. This involves going to the online service and accessing your preset PIN. From there, you will be prompted to change your credentials. If you are unable to access the online service, there is a customer helpline available. 
  • Load the card: Finally, load funds onto the card using either the application or the website. The system makes available ten different currencies for travel to 45 countries. Once you have loaded the amount, it works like a traveller’s cheque and the exchange rate is locked in.

Benefits Of The CIBC Air Canada Prepaid Card

Particularly for those who frequently travel overseas, the CIBC Air Canada Prepaid Card offers a lot of advantages. The most noteworthy of the benefits is the ability to access a locked-in currency exchange rate. This way, when the exchange is at its most profitable, you can put money on the card and not worry about the risk of it fluctuating during your travels. Other advantages include:

Access To Several Currencies

The card allows you to access ten different currencies for travel in 45 countries across the globe. This is particularly useful if your trip plans involve visiting more than one location as it saves you the hassle of dealing with travellers’ cheques. 

Shop Like A Local From Home

With the CIBC Air Canada AC Conversion card, you can spend like local with travelling and while you’re home. Shop on global e-commerce sites using your foreign currency and avoid exchange fees.

No Conversion Fees

Along with locking in the exchange rate at the time when you load the card, the CIBC Air Canada AC Conversion Visa Prepaid Card also comes with conversion fees when making a purchase. Moreover, there are zero fees when it comes to ordering the card and loading or reloading the card.

Security

Advanced safety features include encrypted chip technology and a unique PIN code that restricts access to the cardholder alone. 

Mobile App

The mobile app is available for both Android and Apple technology. The app lets you monitor your account, manage your currencies, and add funds from your phone. It also gives access to security features such as account freezing in case your card is lost or stolen. 

Online Shopping Features

This card lets you shop with foreign currency on global e-commerce sites. While most websites accept USD (American dollars), it can often save you money to shop in the domestic currency of the retailer. This can prevent you from having to deal with fees for foreign exchange, costs that can add up quickly.

Fraud Protection

You can have peace of mind as the prepaid card is not linked to your bank account. While cards that connect to your checking account run a small risk of theft, this card operates independently. 

Low Or No ATM Fees

You can get affordable ATM withdrawals, with the card offering one no-cost foreign withdrawal each month. All withdrawals made within Canada are entirely free of charge. Keep in mind that this refers to the fees set forth by CIBC, not those issued by the ATM company, so you can still be charged for the transaction. 

Drawbacks Of The CIBC Air Canada Prepaid Card

While there are a lot of advantages to the CIBC Air Canada Prepaid Card, it isn’t without its drawbacks. Determining whether this card is right for you is a matter of weighing the downsides against the advantages. Some issues with the card are that:

Won’t Contribute To Your Credit Score

Though it is secured by Visa and CIBC, the card is prepaid, and thus will not play into your credit profile. The services have merit; although unlike a credit card, it won’t improve your credit score if you use it responsibly. That said, if you encounter issues with the card, it won’t harm your credit either. 

Foreign Transaction Fees For Unsupported Currencies

If a transaction is made outside of the range of the card’s supported currencies, it comes with a 2.5% charge. While this sounds nominal for smaller purchases, it can quickly add up, especially if your trip itinerary includes an area that uses a less popular currency.

CIBC AC Conversion Visa vs. KOHO

CIBC Air Canada AC Conversion Visa Prepaid CardKOHO Prepaid Reloadable Mastercard
Annual Account Fee$0– KOHO Essential: $4/monthly or $48/annually
– KOHO Extra: $9/monthly or $84/annually
– KOHO Everything: $19/monthly
RewardsN/A– Earn up to 2% cash back on groceries, transportation, food, and drink
– Earn up to 50% extra cash back with partnered merchants
Foreign Transaction Fees2.5% for unsupported currencies1.5% (Free for KOHO Extra and Everything)
Cost Per Transaction$0$0
ATM Withdrawal Fee– Free in Canada
– 1 free per month outside Canada; $1.95 and up after that
$0

Is the CIBC Air Canada AC Conversion Visa Prepaid Card Right For You?

This prepaid credit card may be perfect for you if you:

  • If you travel extensively and often visit multiple countries during a single trip
  • Want to avoid credit card interest and credit card debt
  • Like the idea of being able to track your expenditures
  • Want a credit card without all the typical fees of credit cards and bank accounts
  • Like the convenience of using your mobile device to make payments
  • Want to save money on conversion fees

Frequently Asked Questions

What is maximum amount I can load on my prepaid card? 

The maximum amount you can load is $20,000 CAD. The maximum amount you can load in a 24-hour period is $3,000 CAD.

Is my CIBC Air Canada AC Conversion Visa Prepaid Card a credit card? 

No, the card is not a credit card. Instead, it’s a prepaid card that you can use much like a credit card, but it must be preloaded with funds before you use it. 

Can the CIBC Air Canada AC Conversion Visa Prepaid Card be used for online purchases?

Yes, you can use your CIBC Air Canada AC Conversion Visa Prepaid Card to make online purchases, just like you would with a conventional credit card.

Can I build credit with the CIBC Air Canada AC Conversion Visa Prepaid Card?

No, unfortunately not. Prepaid cards can’t help you build credit because they don’t report to the major credit bureaus.

Why would someone need a prepaid card? 

Prepaid cards are simple to obtain and can provide you with a convenient way to make purchases, either in person or online. They can also be used to help you budget and save, especially since they’re free of the high fees that come with credit cards.

Final Thoughts

A credit card without any foreign transaction fees will cost you less when you travel and will provide you with the convenience of spending in various currencies all from one source. This card may be great for you if you’re looking for convenience while minimizing the financial burden of foreign transaction fees.

Lisa Rennie avatar on Loans Canada
Lisa Rennie

Lisa has been working as a personal finance writer for more than a decade, creating unique content that helps to educate Canadian consumers in the realms of real estate, mortgages, investing and financial health. For years, she held her real estate license in Toronto, Ontario before giving it up to pursue writing within this realm and related niches. Lisa is very serious about smart money management and helping others do the same.

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