Wells Fargo’s announcement that they will issue up to 15,000 EMVcredit cards to customers it identifies as travelers is a big steptoward addressing both the need and a business opportunity. Chasehas said it will begin issuing EMV versions of its upscalePalladium Card by June, with other cards to follow. Thisannouncement follows on the heels of the first such U.S. issuer,the United Nations Federal Credit Union, which began issuing EMVcards in 2010 and is planning to expand the program. Theopportunity part of EMV issuing is that so long as the U.S. remainsan EMV-less island, U.S. international travelers may be motivatedto seek out issuers who support these cards, and possibly even payfor the privilege. Wells Fargo and Chase may be the first largeissuers to pursue this early-mover marketing advantage. It will beinteresting to see who follows next.
My travel card wish list? EMV card, no foreign transaction fees,cash back rewards. Yes, I want it all. But for a traveler, EMV is agood place to start.