Best way to access $$$


#1

I’m on the 3 July Grand European tour, I’m looking for some advice from seasoned (or not so seasoned) travelers regarding the best way to access your money.[br]I guess this is primarily aimed at Aussies, but I’m sure others could have valuable input too![br]OK, so I’ve got a couple of bank accounts, one of which I opened just for the trip as it has lower fees than the other bank. BUT I’ve just done some quick calculations and it will cost me around $12.20 from one bank and $17.40 (both AUD…in Euros that 7.60 and 10.90 respectively) to withdraw 300 euro when overseas.[br]Obviously thats going to add up pretty quickly! [br]So whats the best way to access your funds when OS?[br][br][br] [br]


#2

I’m on the 3 July Grand European tour, I’m looking for some advice from seasoned (or not so seasoned) travelers regarding the best way to access your money.[br]I guess this is primarily aimed at Aussies, but I’m sure others could have valuable input too![br]OK, so I’ve got a couple of bank accounts, one of which I opened just for the trip as it has lower fees than the other bank. BUT I’ve just done some quick calculations and it will cost me around $12.20 from one bank and $17.40 (both AUD…in Euros that 7.60 and 10.90 respectively) to withdraw 300 euro when overseas.[br]Obviously thats going to add up pretty quickly! [br]So whats the best way to access your funds when OS?[br][br][br] [br]


#3

Hi there, [br][br]I have found on my past OS trips, I use my credit card for as much as I could. There are no fees on my Visa card for use OS. Only use cash for what you have too.[br][br]And withdraw in $200 or $300 ammounts. Then you are only occuring fees every now and then[br][br]Riss


#4

Hi,[br]Im over in london at the moment…i changed some money before i left at the post office, they dont charge any commission and if you order before 12 midday you get it the next day.[br]Other than that, i got a visa debit card with my bank. you can use it in the atms and im only being charged about $5 per withdrawal…but its not like at home when you withdraw $20, u make it bigger ammounts and keep your wits about you. Otheriwse you can also pick credit when you buy something and not pay the fee at all![br]Hope this helps…any other questions, just ask [br]Katie :slight_smile:


#5

Hey Rob!!![br]I see no-one has mentioned the Travelex card??? Has anyone had experience with this???[br][br]I have a Mastercard debit card, a Visa credit card and now the travelex card… I wasn’t going to bother with the Travelex but I am prone to loosing stuff so my travel agent suggested it as a back-up for the 24hr all country support and replacement card service!!![br][br]Sarah [br]only 13 more sleeps… C u then!!!


#6

Hey Rob!!![br]I see no-one has mentioned the Travelex card??? Has anyone had experience with this???[br][br]I have a Mastercard debit card, a Visa credit card and now the travelex card… I wasn’t going to bother with the Travelex but I am prone to loosing stuff so my travel agent suggested it as a back-up for the 24hr all country support and replacement card service!!![br][br]Sarah [br]only 13 more sleeps… C u then!!!


#7

In regards to Credit card withdrawals do ATM’s overseas require the standard 4 digit PIN or do they prefer 6 digit PIN? Any help will be much appreciated.


#8

Hi Rob,[br][br]Don’t worry too much about fees, what ever way you choose you are going to have to pay something. Just be smart and when withdrawing money make sure that you take the max out.[br]When I did my tour I actually found that I didn’t spend that much cash, as most things you have already paid for. I would try and put as much on my card credit, as it is fee free.[br][br]Sarah, I haven’t used a Travelex card but I knew people that have and they have said that they are good. It is always a good idea to have different options, just in case.[br][br][br]


#9

Hi,[br][br]I’m not sure about the whole credit card and no fees. [br][br]From my experience I have found that the fees are included in the exchange rate. When you get your statement, you see the pruchase and then the rate, but you don’t see any fees. This is part of the ploy by the credit card company making you think there are no fees. [br][br]As far as I know, no credit card company offers fee-free purchases overseas. I might be wrong.[br][br]Cheers,[br]Peter


#10

Visa and Mastercard each charge a 1% fee. And then whatever bank hosts the card charges their own fee usually 2-4%[br][br]so therefore usually its like 3-5% of the total purchase in fees.[br][br]-rachael=


#11

Yes, my bank charges $5 per transaction plus 1% of the amount withdrawn for ATM savings card. For Credit card it’s 2.5% of the amount withdrawn plus the $5.[br]Is it safe to use ATM savings card that has the “cirrus” logo"? I have read that Mastercard, Visa and Cirrus are recognised worldwide. I have also heard that Mastercard is starting to be phased out overseas and that Visa will be used more. Not sure if this is correct.


#12

Virgin credit cards don’t charge any international transaction fees. As opposed to my visa I have through my bank which does. I have found it lot cheaper to use my Virgin Mastercard overseas.[br][br]I just use my bank keycard when withdrawing money, I think it has the Plus logo on it. I haven’t had any problems using any of my cards in Europe.


#13

Hey KatieJ, Do you have the standard 4 digit PIN? One of my Mastercards has 6 digits but wondering if I should change it to 4.


#14

Hey ice5,[br][br]Im using a 4 digit pin, but i cant see the problem in using the six digit one, contact you bank…maybe they can let you know.[br][br]Cheers Katie


#15

OK, I’ve done a quick comparison between standard Aussie bank fees and the Travelex Cash passport.[br]Assuming you have $3000 AUD to spend and you withdraw it all.[br]Assuming that $1 AUD buys 0.62854 Euros[br]Assuming that bank exchange rate is the the same as above.[br]Assuming that you make 6 withdrawls with each card of 300 euros each.[br]Bank fees = $5 withdrawl fee + 2.5% of the AUD amount withdrawn.[br]Travelex fee = 1% of AUD you put on the card, $3.75 per withdrawl and whatever loss you incur buy buying Euro currency from them…today they were selling Euro at 0.607E per aussie dollar.[br][br]Total fees for aussie bank card: $3000AUD buys $1877.52E. 6 withdrawls [br]at $5 each = $30 plus 2.5% of AUD each transaction ($479 x 0.025 = 11.98 * 6 = $71.90) so total fees: $71.90 + $30 = $101.90AUD or 63.77E[br][br]Total fees for Travelex card: $3000AUD buys $1821E, 6 withdrawls at $3.75 each = $22.50, plus 1% fee of $3000AUD = $30 to setup card, so total fees are $52.50 + the loss incurred from buying euros at their rate (1877.52-1821 = 56.52E or 90.31aud, therefore total fee cost with Travelex is $142.81AUD or 89.37E[br][br]I’m sure theres a couple of errors in there but thats a rough estimate…at the end of the day I guess a difference of $26E isn’t that much…will probably come down to which organization has the best support base when you’re OS.[br]


#16

OK, I’ve done a quick comparison between standard Aussie bank fees and the Travelex Cash passport.[br]Assuming you have $3000 AUD to spend and you withdraw it all.[br]Assuming that $1 AUD buys 0.62854 Euros[br]Assuming that bank exchange rate is the the same as above.[br]Assuming that you make 6 withdrawls with each card of 300 euros each.[br]Bank fees = $5 withdrawl fee + 2.5% of the AUD amount withdrawn.[br]Travelex fee = 1% of AUD you put on the card, $3.75 per withdrawl and whatever loss you incur buy buying Euro currency from them…today they were selling Euro at 0.607E per aussie dollar.[br][br]Total fees for aussie bank card: $3000AUD buys $1877.52E. 6 withdrawls [br]at $5 each = $30 plus 2.5% of AUD each transaction ($479 x 0.025 = 11.98 * 6 = $71.90) so total fees: $71.90 + $30 = $101.90AUD or 63.77E[br][br]Total fees for Travelex card: $3000AUD buys $1821E, 6 withdrawls at $3.75 each = $22.50, plus 1% fee of $3000AUD = $30 to setup card, so total fees are $52.50 + the loss incurred from buying euros at their rate (1877.52-1821 = 56.52E or 90.31aud, therefore total fee cost with Travelex is $142.81AUD or 89.37E[br][br]I’m sure theres a couple of errors in there but thats a rough estimate…at the end of the day I guess a difference of $26E isn’t that much…will probably come down to which organization has the best support base when you’re OS.[br]


#17

[quote]Originally posted by KatieJ[br]
Virgin credit cards don’t charge any international transaction fees. As opposed to my visa I have through my bank which does. I have found it lot cheaper to use my Virgin Mastercard overseas.[br][br]I just use my bank keycard when withdrawing money, I think it has the Plus logo on it. I haven’t had any problems using any of my cards in Europe.[br][/quote][br][br]Really? I have a Virgin Credit Card too and their customer service told me that fees are inbuilt into the exchange rate. I was astonished at the poor rate I received when I was in the US last October.[br][br]Maybe it is feeless if your account is in credit, where you are spending your own money not the bank’s???


#18

In today’s Sun Herald, it had some tips for us for those that live in Australia. I’m not sure if it’s any different in other countries bank systems.[br][br]1. The exchange rate quoted in the papers isn’t what you’ll get. It’s the average of the buy and sell rate. When you are buying a currency, the sell rate applies. It is always lower than the buy rate[br][br]2. Phone around the banks and foreign exchange kiosks to see what the best rate on the day is[br][br]3. The worst place for currency exchange is the airport. Choice magazine found you’ll pay 4 to 7 per cent more (or get 4 to 7 per cent less) than at a bank in the city.[br][br]4. The best rates tend to be offered on the banks’ internet sites[br][br]5. Credit Cards, except for Wizard’s Clear Advantage, are the most expensive way to buy in a foreign currency. There’s a 1 to 1.5 per cent currency conversion fee, and the rate is up to 5 per cent worse than you’ll get over the counter. If you take currency out of an ATM overseas, there’s an additional charge usually $4.[br][br]6. Debit cards are no cheaper, except there’s no interst on cash withdrawals[br][br]7. Travellers’ cheques are the cheapest. American Express waives the commission when buying or cashing in[br][br]8.Travelex’s prepaid cash passport is convenient but expensive. There’s a 1 per cent charge when loaded, and $3.75 for each ATM withdrawal[br][br]9. When using credit, debit or Travelex cards to withdraw cash abroad, make fewer but bigger transactions to cut the fees[br][br]10. Always take at least some foreign currency with you. You might need it at the airport.[br]


#19

Wow…[br]Thats a heap of info!!! Thanks everyone… it’s really helpful especially the Herald Sun stuff and Rob’s breakdown…[br]I think we are going to cop fees no matter what we do so it’s whatever you are familar with and comfortable using that seems to me to be most important - im taking all 3, credit card, debit card and Travelex!!![br][br]As for the 4 verus 6 digit pin. I read in 2 travel books for Europe that it is best to have a 4 digit as 6 digit pins arn’t compatible with some ATM’s. They suggested contacting you bank if you have a 6 digit as sometimes you can just use the 1st 4 digits when travelling…[br]Hope this helps…[br](only 11 more sleeps ;D)[br][br][br][br]Sarah


#20

Wow…[br]Thats a heap of info!!! Thanks everyone… it’s really helpful especially the Herald Sun stuff and Rob’s breakdown…[br]I think we are going to cop fees no matter what we do so it’s whatever you are familar with and comfortable using that seems to me to be most important - im taking all 3, credit card, debit card and Travelex!!![br][br]As for the 4 verus 6 digit pin. I read in 2 travel books for Europe that it is best to have a 4 digit as 6 digit pins arn’t compatible with some ATM’s. They suggested contacting you bank if you have a 6 digit as sometimes you can just use the 1st 4 digits when travelling…[br]Hope this helps…[br](only 11 more sleeps ;D)[br][br][br][br]Sarah