Money Exchange matters

Oct 14th, 2003, 08:33 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 12
Money Exchange matters

We will arrive Sindey next sunday. What is the present convertion between A$ and US$. Where is the best place to exchange money?

thanks
Edgar_G is offline  
Oct 14th, 2003, 09:41 AM
  #2  
sandi
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For current conversion exchange rate:

www.oanda.com/comvert

for current rates.

The best place to get local currency is by using ATMs, best rates, be sure to have a 4-digit PIN number for your ATM card. Foreign ATMs do not charge you to use their machines, it's your bank that you have to contact to ascertain the % they charge of a flat fee.

It's also not recommended that you use your credit card for ATMs as these withdrawals are cash advances and you get charged immediately.

Otherwise use your credit cards for restaurant meals, hotel bills and large purchases. But do contact your credit card company to find out the % they charge, if any, for foregn conversion and any other fees.
 
Oct 14th, 2003, 12:45 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 2,114
Edgar
I presume you mean SYDNEY?

The current exchange rate is roughly $AUS1 = $US0.68.

I suggest you check with one of the online exchange agencies, as advised above, to ascertain exactly what it is.

ATM machines are probably the best bet.
margo_oz is offline  
Oct 14th, 2003, 07:24 PM
  #4  
 
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If you want money when you first arrive at Sydney airport, try Thomas Cook Foreign Exchange or Travelex, both should be easy to spot in the terminal and will give a decent rate. The rates will be on a board in clear view.
Kay
KayF is offline  
Oct 22nd, 2003, 12:22 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 6
Edgar,

The exchange rate quoted by margo_oz look to be accurate but keep in mind that they will change slightly from day to day. My experience is that US credit card companies will charge you somewhere around 2% for using your card for any international purchase. If your card doesn't charge that right now it probably will in the very near future.

As to exchanging money you might thiink about getting a little cash at the airport to help you with cab, train, or whatever money till you get a chance to get to a bank. That's where you will get the best rate other than certain ATM machines.

The currency exchange booths will get you on two fronts so be aware of what you are getting into. First, the exchange rate they have listed is always higher than the real exchange rate (if it's $.68 at the bank it's probably $.70 to $.72 at the exchange booth). Second, they charge you a commision on the transaction. Sometimes its a set fee like $10, sometimes it's a rate...something like 5%. In either case it adds to the cost of the transaction. Banks tend to give you a better rate and give you a set fee to exchange.

With all these fees we ended up using our credit card as the 2% fee turned out to be a pretty good deal.

Good Luck and enjoy your trip.
Uncle_Mickey is offline  
Oct 22nd, 2003, 01:54 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 328
Edgar:

FYI - I was in New Zealand last week (from Canada) and used my Canadian Bank's ATM card & VISA card exclusively.

All but my car rental is posted already with my online bank statement.

I compared each days $$ conversion to that days rate in "www.oanda.com/comvert", from Sandi's posting - the $$ delta between ATM Card/VISA Card rates & the "www.oanda.com/comvert" was that my Bank conversion was exactly 2.01% more (~1.8% on credit card & ~2.2% on ATM) including all conversion & transaction fees.

Additionally, I checked the Travelex rates in Toronto - Los Angeles - Auckland as a comparison just to see what the charged & their conversion rates were much closer to what my Bank charges than the "www.oanda.com/comvert" & Travelex also charged the equivalent of a $4.50usd transaction fee per transaction.

Since I do travel internationally about once every quarter, this confirmed what I had suspected for the past year or so, that ATMs & credit cards are now the most economical way get forgien currency rather than going to money exchanges, getting travelers cheques, etc & you are always getting the cash 'you need' rather than what 'you think you need'.

Hope this helps.

Z
TravelMaster is offline  
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