Regulation (EU) 518/2019

What is Regulation (EU) 518/2019;

The EU Regulation 2019/518, establishes, among other things, rules for better consumer information on currency conversion charges within the European Union. According to the institutional framework, the total currency conversion charges shall be expressed in the same way, i.e. as a percentage mark-up over the latest available euro foreign reference exchange rates, issued by the European Central Bank (ECB).

The same way that total currency conversion charges appear (i.e. as a percentage mark up over the ECB rate), should be applied by all payment service providers and the parties that provide currency conversion services to an ATM or point of sale (POS).

For example, if you want to make with your card an ATM transaction or POS purchase in a foreign currency, within the European Union, before the transaction, you can refer to the relevant table posted by the Bank, find the local currency of the transaction and check out the percentage mark-up that will be applied, in case the cuurency conversion will be made by the Bank.

During the transaction, if currency conversion services are provided at the ATM or at the point of sale (POS), the party providing the relevant service, will propose to you the currency conversion and notify you with the percentage mark-up. As a result, you can compare and choose how the conversion will be done (by your Bank or at the ATM/POS), based on the lowest percentage mark-up.

Will there be any changes in my card transactions in EU countries with non euro currency?

There isn’t any change in your transactions with cards in foreign currency. When you use your card for transactions in non-euro currencies, you will still be able to choose to convert the currency:

  • at the ATM or at the point of sale (POS) and therefore pay in euros. In this case, you will be charged with the currency conversion charges that are notified to you, from the party that provides the currency conversion service at the ATM or the point of sale(POS).
  • from the Bank that issued the card (i.e. Piraeus Bank) and therefore pay at the local currency. In this case, the currency is converted by the Bank, with the current charges and exchange rates used by the bank at the date of settlement of the transaction.

Why should total currency conversion charges appear this way?

By implementing a unified way of displaying information on currency conversion charges, it is ensured that you are provided with the information you need to be able to easily and clearly compare the charges notified to you at the ATM or POS point for currency conversion services, with the charges applicable by the Bank that provides you with the card, for the completion of the transaction and so you will be able to choose the most advantageous proposal for you.

What benefit do I get from this way of information about currency conversion charges?

Before making a card transaction (purchase or cash withdrawal at ATM’s) in a currency within the EU, you can check out the total percentage mark-up offered by Piraeus Bank for currency conversion, in the currency that you are interested in, from the relevant table that is posted on the Bank’s website.

Thus, when making the transaction, you can compare the charge offered for the currency conversion at the ATM or the point of sale (POS) (i.e. the percentage mark-up over the ECB rate), with the corresponding charge offered by the Bank and select the provider with the lowest charge rate for currency conversion.

Do I need to do some action as a customer?

You don’t have to do anything. The specific way of showing currency conversion charges applies to all card transactions for your own benefit, in order to choose the most advantageous currency conversion charges for you.

What percentage mark-up should I choose to be charged for my transaction?

You should choose the lowest charge percentage for your transaction, for your own benefit. If you choose to convert the currency at the ATM/POS, you will pay the currency conversion charges offered by the party that provided the currency conversion services at the ATM or the point of sale (POS), while if you choose Piraeus Bank to make the currency conversion, you will pay the Bank’s currency conversion charges, as they are listed in detail in the table that is posted on the Bank’s website.