ATM or Traveler's checks?

Apr 27th, 2004, 03:23 PM
  #1  
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ATM or Traveler's checks?

I know this has been posted before, but I am leaving in 3 days for Germany and then on to Sicily (Taormina). Would someone please reiterate what is the best source of payment? Using the ATM, cashing the travelers checks or credit card? I know many places in Europe do not accept credit cards.
misscarol is offline  
Apr 27th, 2004, 03:29 PM
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Many places don't accept traveler's checks either. One thing they all take is cash. The society is more cash oriented. I never ate at many places, or stayed at ANY hotels that did not take credit cards.

I guess we never will beat this one to death.
bob_brown is offline  
Apr 27th, 2004, 03:35 PM
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If you do a search, you will find more information on this than you could possibly read.

Briefly, use the ATM to get cash. Use credit cards wherever you are able (and that would be most places).

The ATMs use 4-number PINs so if you use a word, find out what the numbers would be by checking your telephone dial. The ATMs in Europe do not usually have letters on them.

Traveler's checks are an expensive nuisance. Don't bother with them.
SalB is offline  
Apr 27th, 2004, 03:36 PM
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<<I know many places in Europe do not accept credit cards.>>

They don't? Perhaps you'll find some out-of-the-way place in Sicily that doesn't, but I should think that will be the exception to the rule. I've run across very, very few places in Europe that don't take credit cards.

But ATMs are definitely the way to go for cash. Traveler's checks are pretty much a thing of the past, IMO.
StCirq is online now  
Apr 27th, 2004, 03:43 PM
  #5  
LN
 
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You might remember though that you can access only a checking account through an ATM in Europe, NOT a savings account.
LN is offline  
Apr 27th, 2004, 04:01 PM
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We found using a debit card for purchases was the most economical--a good exchange rate, and no additional fees such as the credit card has. We used the ATMs for walking around money.
abram is offline  
Apr 27th, 2004, 04:25 PM
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That about wraps it up. Credit card for purchases, ATM for cash from your checking account. Works for me.

P.S. If your ATM card is also a VISA card, and you lose it, someone could use the VISA portion to wipe out your checking account. I would recommend just a plain old ATM card with no visa/mastercard attached.
Budman is offline  
Apr 27th, 2004, 05:52 PM
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Couldn't they wipe out the checking account from an ATM card that is stolen just as easy as an ATM card that is also a Visa?
ginn is offline  
Apr 27th, 2004, 05:55 PM
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Your account is protected if you lose your card. (I have done it!) Actually my mother has a debit only card and there have been places it would not work when my MasterCard debit card would work.

CarolA is offline  
Apr 27th, 2004, 05:55 PM
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Uh - not unless your PIN is written on the card.

(you can't access your bank account w/ a straight ATM card w/o a PIN)
janis is offline  
Apr 27th, 2004, 05:56 PM
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My post was in answer to ginn (CarolA was posting at the same time)
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