Foreign Currency

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by SethH, May 10, 2005.

  1. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    I'm getting ready to go on my honeymoon to Mexico. I was considering ordering foreign currency through my bank, but the lady there told me to just use American dollars and my check card. Do you guys think this is sound advice? I'm hesitant to use my check card at ATM's done there due to the risk of someone stealing the numbers from the machine.

    So, let me konw what you guys have done on your trips to Mexico.
     
  2. Eric Kahn

    Eric Kahn Guest

    Your best bet is to use a CREDIT card for every transaction you can, you will get the best exchange rate and not have to worry about having enough cash

    most merchants in mexico will take american cash if they do not take credit cards, just be aware of that days exchange rate and do a little math in your head so the merchants do not rip you off too bad during the transaction
     
  3. Greg_R

    Greg_R Screenwriter

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    ATMs are more encrypted than many of the websites you purchase items from. I wouldn't worry about it (you are more likely to get mugged). Keep ~$20 (US) worth of mexican money and use your credit card for larger purchases.
     
  4. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    It all depends on where you are going Seth.

    Since you are on a honeymoon, I assume that you are going to some place like Cancun. Major resorts glady accept American dollars (and many of the local merchants will as well) and credit cards (smaller, local merchants may well not). There will also be plenty of ATM machines in these resort towns.

    The best (usually) exchange rates will be at a Casa de Cambio in an area where there are several of them.

    Next best is probably your credit card or the ATM machines. All of these will be pretty close to each other.

    Next (probably) will be exchanging at the hotel, although some will have rates competitive in the local market.

    Next is using USD at major places of business.

    Last is using USD at smaller places of business.

    If your honeymoon is not at a resort location, you should plan on using much more cash than you would normally. For example, in the village where I live, there are only a handful of places where you can use credit cards. This includes some very nice B&Bs, plus some of our best restaurants.
     
  5. Jason L.

    Jason L. Second Unit

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    It used to be that using your ATM Card or Credit Card was always the best option. You got the Bank's exchange rate, which was the best you could possibly get.

    However, the Banks and Credit Card companies have been adding exorbitant fees. My Citibank credit card now charges me a 3% fee for any purchases in a foreign currency. What a ripoff.
     
  6. Marc_Sulinski

    Marc_Sulinski Supporting Actor

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    Exactly - you have to check the transaction fee with your credit card company first. The best you will get is probably a 1% fee. Maybe you could even call them and ask them to reduce it. Tell them you will use another card if they don't change it.
     
  7. Jason L.

    Jason L. Second Unit

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    I started calling around to see what rates my financial companies have:

    1. Wells Fargo ATM Card - $2.00 transaction fee for withdrawing funds in a foriegn country + whatever the other bank charges you. Pretty good deal.

    If you want to use the ATM card as a Visa Card then there is a %3 charge. That Sucks.

    2. Citicard - charges %3 fee on CC purchases. That sucks.

    3. MBNA - charges %3 fee on CC purchases. That sucks.
     

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