MAESTRO Debit Card use in Ireland

Travel Forums Europe MAESTRO Debit Card use in Ireland

1. Posted by pmoylan (Budding Member 31 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Is it possible to avoid the lengthy process of establishing a bank account in Ireland through the use of a Maestro Debit Card issued by my current bank in the US ?

Assuming I was going to live in Dublin for a period of 4 months, it seems I would have these two choices:

1. Apply for an Irish bank account upon my arrival and have access to it for only the final month of my stay (I'm told the length of time to establish an Irish bank account is 3-4 months) Since the purpose of my visit is recreational, I don't intend to work which I presume would complicate my ability to open an account expeditiously.

2. Carry an inordinate quantity of traveller's checks to sustain me for 3-4 months.

Obviously, #2 is not a pleasant option from a security or a convenience standpoint.

Can the length of time to establish an Irish bank account be minimized by transferring money directly to an Irish bank from the debit card from a recognized US bank?

Thanks in advance for any assistance or suggestions on how to handle day-to-day financial transacations with or without the benefit of an Irish bank account.


2. Posted by brassmonk (Budding Member 2 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Hey i just recently got back from traveling Ireland for a month. All my friends and i did was take a few hundred dollars worth of Travellers checks for emergencies and the rest of the time we used our bank cards to withdraw cash out of the ATM. Our banks charged us a 5.00 service fee to do it though so we made sure we took out enough to last us for awhile and that we werent taking out money every other day. Also we used credit cards for purchases at some stores, as they dont make you pay any service charges and with internet banking you can just pay off your credit card with money from your bank account. Most bigger stores/restaurants took visa and mastercard, not too sure about american express though i dont think it was as popular. so i would suggest doing it like that, maybe double check what your bank will charge you for each transaction. My bank charged me 5.00 regardless if i took 1000 out of an ATM or if it was a 20 dollar interact purchase so it doesnt make sence to use your card for interact.
Also you need to make sure that your PIN number is only 4 digits, In Europe they only allow 4 digits to be punched in so you if you have to change it do it before you leave.
good luck - Ireland is way too much fun!

3. Posted by tway (Travel Guru 7273 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Is there any way you can use your credit card for the length of your trip? That way, you can take out cash every now and then, but put bigger expenses on your credit card - which will charge the exchange rate of the day and won't charge a user fee. You'll just need someone at home to pay your monthly bills (when my sister lived in NZ, she had my Mom pay off her MasterCard from Montreal. I think you just have to give permission for somone else to pay your bills using your account).

I wouldn't bother opening a new account for 4 months, unless you're planning to get work and need to deposit a cheque.