According to the Mastercard’s official statement, Mastercard cards issued by Russian banks would no longer be supported by the company’s network abroad. Visa similarly said that cards issued in Russia would no longer work outside the country.
“Cards issued by Russian banks will no longer be supported by the Mastercard network. And, any Mastercard issued outside of the country will not work at Russian merchants or ATMs,” Mastercard said in an official statement, noting “the unprecedented nature of the current conflict and the uncertain economic environment".
“We don’t take this decision lightly. Mastercard has operated in Russia for more than 25 years,” the company added.
“As we take this step, we join with so many others in hoping for and committing to a more positive, productive and peaceful future for us all,” Mastercard said.
Visa, for its part, announced that “effective immediately, Visa will work with its clients and partners within Russia to cease all Visa transactions over the coming days.”
“Once complete, all transactions initiated with Visa cards issued in Russia will no longer work outside the country and any Visa cards issued by financial institutions outside of Russia will no longer work within the Russian Federation,” Visa said.
Bank of Russia has already confirmed that all Visa and Mastercard bank cards issued by Russian banks “will continue to operate normally on Russian territory until their expiration date”. The regulator didn’t stress the fact that normal operation will be possible “on Russian territory” only.
The central bank warned that Russians traveling abroad should carry alternate means of payment such as cash. Yet, there are limits on the amount of cash a traveler can take with them out of Russia.