Local banks have recently implemented “currency conversion fees” when their credit cards are used for overseas purchases. I had used my OCBC credit card for purchases overseas – once at Amazon.com and the other with Paypal. Both times, when asked by Amazon and Paypal if I wanted to pay in Sing Dollars rather than U.S Dollars, I decided to pay in Sing Dollars knowing that there would be “currency conversion fees” if I paid in U.S Dollars. When the credit card statements came, I discovered I was still charged for currency conversion even though NO conversion was done by OCBC since I paid in Sing Dollars.

Multiple calls and written feedback to OCBC have either been most unsatisfactorily handled or not responded to at all. Each time when I called to complain about the “currency conversion fees”, their customer service reps can only explain that the fees were charged since “Amazon is an American company” and “Paypal is an American company”. They did not seem to understand that at issue is whether a currency conversion was made or not, not whether a company is overseas in America!

Three months on, my complaints have still not been satisfactorily resolved or answered. A request for a customer service supervisor/manager to return my call (since the CS reps can’t seem to answer my questions) have been duly ignored.

And to add insult to injury, I was also just charged $190+ by OCBC for their annual credit card renewal fee. Should that be the price of doing business in Singapore?! Bah Humbug!

Restless in Singapore
A.S.S. Contributor

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