I'm starting my RTW next Jan, and one of the doubts I have is about how am I going to handle the money I need for the trip. Of course I'm not carrying 5.000 euros+ cash in my pocket, but I'm wondering how I can avoid paying all the taxes and charges that I pay when simply using ATM machines.
Is there any way of setting up an "international bank account", and pay less charges? Or put some money on those international transfer banking services (ex: western union)?
Thanks for any advice.
One way would be to credit your credit card with the cash. this way you get interest, and you don't pay charges (?) for taking the money out of the ATM. Depends on your credit card company possibly though.
course you can always get travellers cheques as well,.
Check with your bank. Many have plans that allow you to get reduced or no ATM fees. You might have to pay a fee, but if you are going to be withdrawing a lot of times, it may be worth it.
Otherwise, try and minimize the number of withdrawls you make. It's always a balancing act, of course, between taking a lot of money out (making you a target for thieves) or taking out a little a lot of times and paying ATM fees all the time.
If you can open a bank account in the UK, I have heard that Nationwide bank offers no withdrawl fees, including on international ATM withdrawls. Might be worth looking into.
I do not think the credit card idea would work, by the way. They would still charge the withdrawl fee, it would just get credited, like the withdrawl, from your card.
I checked with Nationwide as their advert states no fees on withdrawls anywhere in the world and the way it came over to me at the bank was "they will not charge me" for withdrawing money but the Bank who own the ATM might/will so I did'nt bother!!!!!!!!!
Even HSBC charge for withdrawls outside of Europe as they state HSBC in England is not the same as HSBC Asia,if you are going travelling in Asia you must set yourselve up with an Asia HSBC bank,all a con and fruad as all the banks are.
al de bes
It still might be worth it to give Nationwide a second look, or any back that doesn't charge international ATM fees. For me, I pay $5 Canadian in PLUS network fees when I withdraw money abroad ($3 in the United States). That's on top of the local ATM fees charged by the bank. If I am travelling for extended periods, then those $5 could add up to a lot of money! If you can save yourself that fee, even if the local bank is charging you, it's probably worth looking into.
Thanks for the tips, guys.
I'll give natiowide a look,and some local banks in Portugal.
How about travellers cheques? Are they the answer to all my questions? Don't you pay a fee for them, or is it difficult to cash them in?
I have an account in Bank of America, there is no fee if you get the money from Bank of America around the round. It causes you US$5.00+ if you get it from the other ATM machines.
I don't personally like travellers cheques. I find it hard to find people to cash them in, most places will charge you a fee to cash them (usually larger than the ATM fees), and with ATMs in so many places around the world now, it's easier. Even with guaranteed replacement of travellers cheques, you still need to go through the hassle of getting them replaced. It's much harder for someone to steal money sitting in your bank account in your home country.
Thanks Greg, now I understand what a "travel guru" is all about!
Lai, can you really find Bank of America anywhere in the world?