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Last Post This thread is marked as being about Australia
1. Posted by lauriej (Full Member 19 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

hey travellers!!

anyone got any advice on taking money to Oz, for example traveller's cheques or transfer from bank to bank? i was planning on taking traveller's cheques but it's a lot of cash as i'm goin for approx 12 months on a working hol visa. but i heard it's expensive to transfer cash from a UK account to an Oz account! Anyone done this before and got some tips? or is anyone going soon and got some ideas to share?

Thanks everyone! Happy Travelling!!

2. Posted by stevieh (Respected Member 615 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

Hi Laurie,
I don't know what the fee is for moving money from a UK account into an Australian account - can you have an Oz bank account if you aren't a permanent resident?
Anyway, I found it perfectly easy to withdraw from my UK account at any cash machine. Obviously, you pay a small fee, so you draw out enough for a week or two at a time, but it's very convenient.
If you're going to be working, maybe your employer would help you with info. Perhaps they would require you to have an Oz account, or pay you in cash?

3. Posted by Sam I Am (Admin 5588 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

It probably costs about 10-15 pounds to transfer a lump sum (regardless of amount) to an Oz bank account. Personally I hate travellers cheques and for that amount of time it would be a real pain to have so many travellers cheques with you, not to mention the cost (which I am positive will outweigh any transfer fees) and the worry of having them stolen even if they are insured.

Alternatively, once you are in Australia, you could withdraw the maximum allowed from your UK account at an ATM as long as you have an ATM card with either a Maestro or Cirrus logo on it. Then deposit it on your Australian bank account (yes, it is possible to have one if you aren't a permanent resident) which is free.

The cost of withdrawing money from your UK bank account overseas with an ATM card is probably much lower than the transfer costs (call your bank for the exact details). You can't move the whole amount you have saved this way probably as there is a withdrawal limit on ATM's but you should be able to withdraw 500-1000 AUD without problems. It's also a smart thing to do so that you always have two separate sources of money.

The only thing to watch out for if you do this is obviously to withdraw the money at the same time you are going to deposit it, preferably inside the bank. Wouldn't want to lose that cash before you're able to deposit it!!!!

Hope that helps!


4. Posted by james (Travel Guru 4138 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

You can put your money in my account and I will look after it for you!

Seriously, I'd do some travellers cheques, have a credit card, and also use you UK bank account and access it through the Oz ATM network.

5. Posted by archester (Budding Member 2 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!


I've got the same problem. One solution I was thinking about was to take all my money out in travellers cheques (which are commission free from some places in the UK) and then depositing them in an australian account when I open one. The only problem would be if it is not possible to cash the travellers cheques in australia commission free. I suspect the Australian banks charge a commission for cashing them as they seem to charge for everything else (like depositing and withdrawing money - surely the purpose of a bank?).
Does anybody know of any banks that will cash travellers cheques commission free?

6. Posted by Sam I Am (Admin 5588 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

The only thing I remember about banks in Australia is that they charge hefty fees on just about anything (including say more than one withdrawal per week from an atm).

Personally, I would stick away from too many travellers cheques, especially considering that overseas ATM cards work fine in 99% of all cases.


7. Posted by james (Travel Guru 4138 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

Banks in Australia commit robbery. My ANZ account costs $5.00 per month to maintan - that's $60 per year, or the equivalent of 2 cases of beer (at 24 bottles per case).

Oh, I got paid the princley sum of 10 cents in interest for the whole year! I normally keep about $1,000 in the account - so go figure the interest rate.

So when it comes to cashing travellers cheques, you will either pay for it in commission, or pay for it in getting a lower exchange rate but "commission free".

8. Posted by trscrooge (First Time Poster 1 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

Hi guys,
Citibank has a good account for travellers to Australia which you should check out. You can set it up before you come over (but you do need to show ID at a branch to get your card and withdraw money from it when you arrive). There are no monthly fees, it costs $1AUD (approx 35p) per withdrawal at any ATM (any of the banks), and $10AUD for each transfer of foreign exchange in to the account. So you could do one big transfer. Double check all this at www.citibank.com.au/traveller

Also I am in the process of setting up a website for cheap travel advice to Australia and elsewhere... travelscrooge.com.au which will be full of such info if you want to take a look, including really cheap travel insurance.

Hope you have a good trip!

[ Edit: Link made unclickable... ]

9. Posted by jont (First Time Poster 1 posts) 14y Star this if you like it!

You can use interney money transfer companies such as www.easyexchange.co.uk to get funds from the U.K to Aussie cheaply...........you need a bank a/c in both countries though....cheers Jon