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Best way for using money in Australia from the UK?

Travel Forums Australia / New Zealand & The Pacific Best way for using money in Australia from the UK?

1. Posted by Subz (Budding Member 9 posts) 6y

Hey!

What's the safest/easiest/cheapest way of paying for things in Australia? With regard to either getting my £ converted to A$ or travellers cheques or using my card while I'm out there?

I would imagine walking around with a few thousand A$ isn't the safest idea, but I don't know what to do! Any help would be much appreciated :)

Thanks in advance

2. Posted by Sander (Moderator 4808 posts) 6y

If you're there for just a couple of weeks, withdraw cash from ATMs in reasonably large amounts ($400 at a time or so) with your regular bank card; you get good exchange rates, plus whichever "per transaction" fee your bank charges for overseas use. These fees are always too high (although, assuming you're from the UK, I've seen many posts saying that nationwide has pretty low fees for this), but if you withdraw cash just once a week or so, they'll probably stay within the limits where it's no use bothering to find ways around them.

If you're there for a year, open a bank account once you've arrived, and then do a one time bank transfer of a couple of thousand of dollars in one go. There'll be a hefty fee for that from your bank (somewhere in the region of 20-30 pounds probably, depending on the exact amount of money you're transferring), but then withdrawing from ATMs by your Australian bank will be free, so it'll quickly end up working out cheaper.

3. Posted by Subz (Budding Member 9 posts) 6y

Thanks a lot Sander, very helpful!

Forgot to mention I was there for 3 months, would you recommend the weekly withdrawal method for that?

4. Posted by Mr.N (Budding Member 10 posts) 6y

I've been told Nationwide is free, but I'm unsure to how true that actually is.

If it is, or even if the cost is low I'd reccomend getting a Nationwide account.

I've withdrawn in countrys from Natwest and Alliance and Leicester and it's always been a bit pricey.

I'm with Anz at the moment, they seem a good bank.

I asked Nationwide about a transfer cost and was quoted 30 pounds.

Post 5 was removed by a moderator
6. Posted by Sander (Moderator 4808 posts) 6y

Quoting Subz

Forgot to mention I was there for 3 months, would you recommend the weekly withdrawal method for that?

Yes. With three months, I'm assuming you're just on an eVisitor, rather than on a working holiday visa, and I think banks require the WHV (not at all certain about that, though), in which case opening an account there wouldn't be possible anyway. Costs should be nearly identical for three months of withdrawing, or doing the one time transfer.