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MasterCard or VISA???

Travel Forums North America MasterCard or VISA???

1. Posted by DanniB (Full Member 56 posts) 10y

hey just wondering what the most widely accepted type of card is in Canada and the US, mastercard of visa?
Also, how difficult is it to open a canadian or american bank account as a tourist?? can you point me in the direction of some american / canadian bank websites please? thanks

2. Posted by elan (Budding Member 5 posts) 10y

Both VISA and MC are accepted in most places I think equally. But rarely I saw a MC logo only. MC is more american than VISA I think. It is possible to open an account in JP Morgan Chase bank. They have a kinda International department. You just need 2 pieces of ID and one must be a photo ID

[ Edit: Edited at Aug 27, 2006 4:09 PM by elan ]

3. Posted by mikeyBoab (Travel Guru 5077 posts) 10y

I'm pretty sure Mastercard and Visa are owned by the same group, which, in my mind, makes them pretty much the same . . .

4. Posted by roteague (Budding Member 46 posts) 10y

Quoting dannib

hey just wondering what the most widely accepted type of card is in Canada and the US, mastercard of visa?
Also, how difficult is it to open a canadian or american bank account as a tourist?? can you point me in the direction of some american / canadian bank websites please? thanks

Both are widely accepted. Why do you feel the need to have a local bank account? Are you planning on staying a long time? If you need access to cash without carrying it, then just use an ATM card - I've used mine in Australia, New Zealand, Germany, England, etc .... I think you get the picture.

5. Posted by LauraMC (Inactive 30 posts) 10y

The banks in Canada (theres only about 5-6 major ones) like to screw you over with service fees. If you have less than $1000 in your account, they're likely to charge you service fees each month to use your account.
The major ones are: Royal Bank www.royalbank.ca
TDCanadaTrust www.tdcanadatrust.com
ScotiaBank: www.scotiabank.com
Bank of Montreal: www.bmo.com

The ones I see most often around (which is something to consider so you don't cruise around all day looking for your bank) are Royal Bank, TDCanadatrust and Bank of Montreal. One thing thats awesome about the Canadian banking system is we have Interac setup which allows you to use your bank card at most stores to pay for your purchase which debits your account immediately. I don't think the nation wide system is available in the U.S.

6. Posted by LauraMC (Inactive 30 posts) 10y

few things also to consider when bringing your own VISA card and bank card over:
make sure your bank uses the Plus, cirrus or maestro network. Otherwise your card will be eaten and that equals no funds and no card.
Make sure you check into your daily withdrawal limit on your bank card/visa. I had problems withdrawing money when I was in Italy. I had to collect call my bank because I was getting desperate. Turns out they put a stupid $20 withdrawal limit on my card which wasn't going to get me anything.

7. Posted by DanniB (Full Member 56 posts) 10y

LauraMC your awesome! i was just about to start another post called "those little symbols on my bank card - cirrus and maestro" but i now have no need :)
i have never seen any ATM with those symbols in sydney (which might be me not looking) but i know i have them on my bank card! COOL that means i can access my cash from overseas - LOVELY!
thanks champ.

8. Posted by roteague (Budding Member 46 posts) 10y

Quoting DanniB

LauraMC your awesome! i was just about to start another post called "those little symbols on my bank card - cirrus and maestro" but i now have no need :)
i have never seen any ATM with those symbols in sydney (which might be me not looking) but i know i have them on my bank card! COOL that means i can access my cash from overseas - LOVELY!
thanks champ.

I've used my ATM card all over Australia (MC and Visa as well). The only problems I found were trying to use ATM cash machines in stores, etc. Generally, they only worked a bank ATM machines. I prefer this since, I don't have to carry large sums of cash, and I don't have to deal with the excessive fees that Thomas Cook and others charge for currency conversion.

9. Posted by friscokid (Full Member 122 posts) 10y

www.firstrepublic.com

bank in ny, ny; san francisco; Los Angeles and up and down the california coast -- napa valley to san diego (including santa barbara)

this bank will take care of you as long as you can prove who you are.

master = visa its the same thing just a different name. its american express and discover the credit cards not accepted as much as visamastercard.