When traveling from New Zealand to Thailand, where can I buy Thai Bahts and get better exchange rate and lower commissions?

It's only for the first 10K THB (Thai Baht) for the first days. The rest I will withdraw from ATMs.

The options I considered:

  1. Withdraw from an ATM at Bangkok's airport.
  2. Buy THB from New Zealand's post office or some other foreign currency agency.

5 Answers 5


ATMs at the airport are numerous and easy to find. In Thailand, ATMs give you a better exchange rate than changing cash, especially for less-popular currencies like NZD. However, you need to be aware of the fees your home bank may charge (fixed fee + percent commission). On top of this, almost all ATMs in Thailand charge an additional 150 THB fee for international transactions, so it's better to withdraw larger amounts. Citibank ATMs near Asoke/Sukhumwit BTS Skytrain station do not charge the 150 baht fee (as of Jan 2012).

Second best is probably changing cash to THB in Thailand. Rates at the Bangkok airport are reasonable, but some places in the city offer better rates.

Exchange rates for THB in your home country are probably significantly worse than in Thailand (due to currency export controls).


I would use the ATMs at the airport. I never had problems with that and the conditions should be the same as for any other ATM in Thailand. The rates should be better, unless you pay high fees for ATM withdrawal, this depends on your card and bank.

  • Are they easy to find at the airport? Jan 14, 2012 at 19:35
  • @Arik Fraimovich - I actually have not been to the new airport in Bangkok. But without the exception of some super tiny airports, all airports I've even been to have ATMs. I just did a quick search and there are ATMs at the airport, but people complain that there is a charge of at least 150 TBH. There may be cheaper ATMs elsewhere in Thailand but not in the airport. Jan 14, 2012 at 19:47
  • If you're flying into Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok then yes, you can easily find ATMs. Actually, you can even find them at the old one in Don Mueang but that's only for domestic flights now. Jan 16, 2012 at 11:15

One way to avoid the 150 baht ATM charge (actually two ways...) are:

  1. Go to the bank and use the card to withdraw money over the counter - they will simply charge the VISA Debit etc from your card (assuming not just an ATM card - most these days have debit card abilities). This will save the fee in Thailand (and the rate will be just as good).

  2. Use a NEON ATM machine (this is a Japanese loan company that is very popular here in Thailand) - they also allow ATM withdrawals but do not charge the 150 baht like Thai banks do). You can find these in shopping malls.

  • 1
    AEON ATM Machine as correcting
    – meddlesome
    Feb 5, 2013 at 6:30

Airports give low exchange rates so I advise you to just exchange the minimum required currency initially. You can get the best exchange rates at malls while shopping.

  • 2
    This is true in most countries, but not so in Thailand. The rates in the airport is pretty comparable to the high street.
    – Wolf5370
    Jun 14, 2012 at 10:49

Avoid ATMs. Almost all will charge 150 baht transaction fee, and your home bank will likely charge another 150 baht fee. That is a lot.

Just use currency exchange place at the BKK airport. They have pretty good rates. Not the best, but they don't completely rip you off like at most other countries' airports.

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