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75

I think the current usual solution is to get a debit card (or failing that a credit card) with low/no foreign transaction and cash withdrawl fees. (In the UK, the Halifax Clarity Card is the best for this at the moment) Then, when you get to the country, take out cash periodically. Not too much in case of issues, but don't assume you can do it too often as ...


69

Before you leave, call your bank. You'll want to alert them that you'll be using your credit or debit cards overseas, so as not to trigger fraud alerts. Then ask them if there is a network in your destination that involves lower fees. For example, my bank gave me names of specific banks in England, Italy, and Germany and told me that if I used ATMs at those ...


57

I have haggled over the scarfs on the Jemaa el-Fnaa square in Marrakesh. The starting price was usually around 200DH and I was able to buy for 65DH. I was totally unexperienced back then but I made some observations: Wait to be invited by the shopkeeper. Pretend you are just passing by and stopping for a moment to look at the wares. Do not express interest ...


39

I use five strategies to pay for things when I travel: The best rates are often the rates you get with your American credit card or debit card. Try to charge as much as you can. The fees are very low and the exchange rates are fair. However, many American banks charge several dollars for every foreign currency transaction, so if you plan to spend a lot of ...


33

Technically the only note that is valid legal tender in England and Wales are England and Welsh bank notes: Are Scottish & Northern Ireland banknotes "legal tender"? In short ‘No’ these banknotes are not "legal tender"; furthermore, Bank of England banknotes are only legal tender in England and Wales. Legal tender has, however, a very narrow ...


28

In many hotels you can just drop your keys in a box on your way out (or leave them in your room) and the charges will go to the credit card on file. Should you become aware that the card won't work, one approach would simply be to stay as long as you had intended, pack your bags, and just leave. Undoubtedly the hotel will call or email you within a few days ...


26

If you pay by Dollar (or home currency) The hotel will add a charge for this, hence you will be paying more. If you pay by local currency the exchange rate will be decided by the credit card company or bank. These exchange rates are much better than the hotel rates. Check this Visa page for more information regarding this service for Visa holders. AFAIK, ...


26

Assuming a mature system of law and a country where the police is not commonly corrupt and debts not commonly collected by violent means: Are they allowed to hold your passport until you come back and pay? No, unless you agree to it as a means of quickly, cheaply and unbeaurocratically settling the issue. What happens if they call the police? The ...


22

Try a credit union. Many of them boast surcharge-free ATMs. Lots of smaller banks don't collect surcharges either. Those that don't often will have a big sign saying so near the ATM. The Credit Union National Association, the Independent Community Bankers Association and The Co-Op Network all have ATM locators on their Web sites. Ask for cash-back when ...


22

It is certainly not true that "most European countries take gold". You cannot pay for goods in a shop with gold. Nor can you walk into a high street bank with gold and walk out with currency - you would need to do it through a specialist dealer. There are places where you can sell gold jewellery, but you will get very poor prices.


22

I believe you are mixing two pieces of advice. The best currencies are Euros, Canadian Dollars... This is because of the trade embargo against Cuba from the USA. This means US dollars are very expensive to exchange in Cuba, so other currencies should be used. Euros are often said to get the best exchange rate. This is not saying that vendors, hotels or ...


21

My answer is Europe centric: We are used to banks in the USA that will give you a debit or check card with a magnetic stripe. Credit cards are the same way. Some of these credit cards have a chip and almost none of them require a pin when used as a credit card. On the other hand, when you fly / sail / swim across the pond to Europe, almost every local card ...


21

Unless it is a significant amount, changing coins isn't worth it. The amounts are small and most banks and foreign exchanges won't accept coins generally. My solution is to collect the left over foreign coins until I fly on an airline that participates in the Change for Good program and then donate them. British Airways and Virgin also have their own ...


21

Currency inflow/outflow in India is regulated under the Foreign Exchange Management Act. The relevant foreign exchange / customs rules are: Import of Indian Currency is prohibited. However, in the case of passengers normally resident in India who are returning from a visit abroad, import of Indian Currency upto Rs. 7500 is allowed. This translates to ...


21

The only real way to be successful at this is to start knowing the value you place on the item and never pay more than this. Start your haggling below this price - a good rule of thumb is for your starting price to be around the same amount below your final as the asking price is above. Some countries like to bargain harder, but at the end of the day, you ...


20

Thomas Exchange will change almost any currency into Sterling - including the Mongolian, Kazakhestan, Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan, Armenian and Georgian currencies, and many other obscure currencies and even pre-Euro currencies such as French Francs, Italian Lira, etc. We do not charge any additional fees and our rates are always better than the Post Office, ...


19

In most border towns you can, further away not. Sometimes they might also give you small change back in CAD, or charge you a small fee for using USD. If you exchange the money in a bank you will get a much better rate. Try to pay with your Credit card whenever possible.


19

There is no limit, if it's more than 10'000 USD however, you need to declare it: There is no limit on the amount of money that can be taken out of or brought into the United States. However, if a person or persons traveling together and filing a joint declaration (CBP Form 6059-B) have $10,000 or more in currency or negotiable monetary instruments, they ...


19

There is one Pound Sterling, which is represented by Bank of England, Scottish and Northern Irish notes and by Royal Mint coins (there aren't separate coins in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland). Gibraltar, the Falkland Islands and Saint Helena (overseas territories) and Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man (crown dependencies) each have their own ...


18

This varies very much depending on your country of origin and your destination. Best exchange rate mean lowest spread, but keep in mind, that some banks apart of the spread, also charge extra commissions. Keeping that in mind, there are some general tendencies. Exchange rates, from best, to worst: electronic transactions (i.e. transactions made directly ...


18

No. I've lived in Montreal and Toronto and the occasional place will take US dollars, but most places will just laugh at you, perhaps in French. If they do take it, they might give you 80 cents on the dollar or so. Just use credit for everything. There's really no reason not to.


18

You need to have a real understanding of what the local currency is worth in your home currency. It's very easy to get blinded by large numbers. I was in Indonesia, haggling over a set of wicker place mats. The exchange was about 9000 Rupiah to the USD. Starting price was 250,000 Rupiah for a set, about $27.00. We ended up paying 100,000, The price ...


18

I just can tell you about my personal experience: Most often it would have been possible for me to pay with Euros in restaurants, bars or hotels, but the exchange rate was really bad. So I preferred to exchange money in a bank and then use Czech crowns. If you book tickets or accommodation online, it wasn't a real problem for me because the prices in Euros ...


17

This happened to us a few times. Credit card companies can be very fickle things, they allowed someone that wasn't us to pay for $500 worth of CDs across the world, but blocked a local hotel we were staying at from finalizing the charge for our room. When we travel, we generally only bring one credit card to minimize the potential pain of losing our stuff, ...


17

There is no limit to the amount of cash you can carry, however if you are carrying more than $10,000 USD (or equivalent in foreign currency) then you must declare it (full details on how to do that at the URL above). However bringing cash is very rarely the best strategy for foreign exchange. Although your credit or ATM cards might charge you a fee when ...


17

There seems to be no limit as such. However if you carry more than 10'000 €, you might have to declare it depending on the country. For example in Germany, you are to declare it when orally asked to do so. For the UK on the other hand, there seems to be no need to do so. So if you consider taking more than 10'000 €, you should check the rules for the ...


17

It would be more convenient for you to change your Swiss Francs to US Dollars while still in Switzerland, and you would probably get a better deal too. If you walk down the street in the center of any Swiss town, you'll encounter a bank every block or two. They will all likely post their exchange rates quite visibly, and will happily deal in cash. (The ...


15

What I now do and it has worked really well for a few years is plan on average how much I will need, leave it all in a bank account with a visa debit card (maestro doesnt always work). I then just draw it out in 2/3 goes. Safe, convenient, easy and cheap.


15

元, traditional Chinese 圓, is the generic Chinese character for "unit of currency" and is used to refer to the local currency: RMB in China, HKD in Hong Kong, SGD in Singapore, etc. So odds are pretty high the signs you saw were actually for prices in HKD. While many Hong Kong shops do accept RMB, it's just a service for Chinese travelers and the exchange ...


15

You need two things: 1) a good feeling for the local prices and 2) experience. Haggling is more than just quoting low prices. It about your complete presentation and attitude. When they quote me their first price (I will never be the one to call the first price), I usually just smile at them, maybe tell them it is a ridiculous amount etc. So, while not ...



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