Getting Money in Brazil (and Argentina)

Travel Forums Central/South America & The Caribbean Getting Money in Brazil (and Argentina)

1. Posted by TravelChas (Budding Member 6 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

So, a few things have me freaked out about Brazil (and to a lesser degree Argentina), but none more than being able to access my money. Reports of ATM kidnappings and emphasis on street robberies on sites and by word of mouth have me making elaborate schemes on how I'm gonna get my money out.

Give me the truth. What is the most practical, generally safe, and realistic way for me to access my money while on the road. As of now I'll be travelling alone. That's part of what worries me.

The positives (of going) still out weigh the negatives for me, but coming from a place that is generally very safe, I'm a little paranoid about security.


2. Posted by Kingwindle (Respected Member 302 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

Try not to worry about it. The amount of times that this happens to travellers is extremely rare if you take precautions when taking money out.
I have been all through Argentina, and when taking money from an ATM you go into a private booth anyway, its not like England when you take it outside. Not sure about Brazil.
1 rule is, ,if you are gonna take money out, take it out in a very public area, say around midday where there are many people. It gives people less of a chance.
Travellers cheques are safe and can be replaced easily, but incurr more commission than ATM withdrawl. Maybe leave your cards in the hostel safe if you trust them to avoid carrying your card around?

Since being away, i feel safer in South America than at home, so its like at home, as long as you are not stupid then it should be fine. It can be you are in the wrong place at the wrong time and a total coincidence if anything goes wrong which sometimes cannot be avoided, same as home.

3. Posted by mim (Travel Guru 1276 posts) 13y Star this if you like it!

I took money out of ATMs all through Brazil, no worries.
Just be sensible about it, don't flash your cash and generally try to go to ATM's inside buildings, my favourites were the Citi banks they even talked to you and were really polite


4. Posted by Edinburgh1 (First Time Poster 1 posts) 10y Star this if you like it!

Hey i was just wondering if anybody could give me a bit advice. I'm leaving my native scotland to go to argentina on the 14th july and rather than take my bank of scotland visa debit card with me and be charged huge commission rates when taking out money, I'd rather find some other way of taking money with me. I tried opening a bank accoun with an Argentinian bank, but unfortunately you have to be 21 to open an account there. I'll only be 19 when in Argentina... So does anybody have any suggestions as to how I could access my money while over there - preferably free of charge, or the most economical way... Thanks


5. Posted by Fast (Budding Member 37 posts) 10y Star this if you like it!

In Brazil. Rio especially, ATM's are easy to find. They are open from 7-8am until 10pm. Max withdrawal limit in any one bank is 1,000 reais a day. I have use my ATM in Argentina but only in Buenos Aires.

6. Posted by adaziv (Inactive 30 posts) 10y Star this if you like it!

I wouldn't worry too much about this. I tried withdrawing money in Brazil several times and never had any problems. Most banks I was using had the foyer area with ATMs that seemed very safe. However, my problem was that I could only withdraw money from Citibank and HSBC ATMs and no other. Even though I tried my Visa and MasterCard credit cards and my visa debit card still didn't work. That's why I will be reseraching the addresses of these ATMs for this summer.

Post 7 was removed by a moderator
8. Posted by loubylou (Respected Member 664 posts) 10y Star this if you like it!

When we were in Brazil we would only go to the ATMs which were inside a booth and you would have to swipe your card on the outside for the door to open. This lowers the chance that someone can come up behind you at the ATM and steal your money. We have a British visa card and the only banks that would work for us were HSBC and Citibank, but there were plenty of these around, however with some the doors wouldn't open for us after 10pm. If you are in doubt ask in the bank itself during the day when it is open. Whenever we saw an ATM for a bank that would accept our card, we just noted it's location so we wouldn't spend hours wandering around to find one again!

In Argentina we had no problems using any ATM we found. As to withdrawal limits, before we left our bank told us that we would be limited to our daily (UK) withdrawal limit of £250 or the bank's daily limit if that was less than this amount.

Also we only ever withdraw enough money for a day and a half's spending, so if it did get stolen while we were at the ATM or walking back to our room, we wouldn't have lost a lot of money.