Bank ATM questions for England

Jul 17th, 2010, 04:59 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 12,961
Bank ATM questions for England

Hi everyone,

I will be traveling to Chester and London England this week. I have a couple of ATM cards and was wondering what most banks accept.
Cirrus, NYCE, Interlink, or Plus?

Thanks!!!
girlonthego is offline  
Jul 17th, 2010, 05:05 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 7,300
Cirrus and Plus are the most common. Never saw an ATM that did not take both. Don't know about the other networks you listed.
fmpden is offline  
Jul 17th, 2010, 05:06 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 20,479
If you have a BofA card, you can use a Barclay's ATM without paying the normal BofA foreign fee ($5 per transaction).
Michael is offline  
Jul 17th, 2010, 05:15 PM
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 12,961
I wish I had known about the BofA card thing. Damn. Thanks.

fmpden: I have a couple of cards. I guess one of them will work.
girlonthego is offline  
Jul 17th, 2010, 07:46 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 7,300
Be sure to notify the security department of the card issuer of when and where you will be. The statement about BA is a little misleading. ALL FEEs are determined by the card issuer. There are no fees for using an ATM in Europe unless your card issuer decides to charge you fee. BA still charges a currency conversion fee.
fmpden is offline  
Jul 17th, 2010, 07:50 PM
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 12,961
yeah I have been on the phone all night calling the credit cards and banks to let them know.
thanks fmpden!
girlonthego is offline  
Jul 18th, 2010, 12:10 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 20,479
BA still charges a currency conversion fee.

If so, I believe that this is new. I'll report later on what I was charged this spring using by BofA ATM card at BNP ATMs.
Michael is offline  
Jul 18th, 2010, 09:00 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 20,479
Here is what I can report from my ATM withdrawals at a BNP ATM in France using my BofA ATM card:

On May 10 I withdrew 250€, for which I was charged $318.19. This represents a -3.51% fee (a May 7 withdrawal is similar). The alternative (I did not keep by French withdrawal receipts) is a charge of 23.63% on a 200€ withdrawal. As bad as BofA is on tacking on excessive fees, I doubt that they would charge that much. Could I have been using my BofA credit card? No, because I do not have one.

The conversion rate was obtained from http://www.xe.com/ccc/. The only explanation that I have for this anomaly is that with partner banks, BofA uses a bank exchange rate which is better than the standard rate listed on xe.com.
Michael is offline  
Jul 18th, 2010, 09:08 AM
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 12,961
Michael, it almost makes you want to just order the money before you go! I can't believe 23.63% that sounds like highway robbery!!! Even the 3.51%!

The banks get you no matter how or where you take the money out!
girlonthego is offline  
Jul 18th, 2010, 09:10 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 20,479
The 3.51 is a minus, I should have been charged more according to xe.com.
Michael is offline  
Jul 18th, 2010, 09:19 AM
  #11  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 12,961
well at least one charge wasn't so bad! I guess it depends on the luck of the atm. oh well. It is not like I am taking out a million dollars on vacation. I already know it costs to have a good time, especially dollar vs pound! ouch!
girlonthego is offline  
Jul 18th, 2010, 09:24 AM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 20,479
I don't think that you understand. I should have had more than $318.19 withdrawn from by account for the 250€.
Michael is offline  
Jul 18th, 2010, 10:08 AM
  #13  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 12,961
No I think I get it. The one charge of 23% was a lot! The other 3.whatever was in your favor. Correct? So, it is a crapshoot on how each bank charges or not.
girlonthego is offline  
Jul 18th, 2010, 10:12 AM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 20,479
Both are BofA charges, depending on how much one assumes I withdrew in euros. It is not a crap shoot. If I am correct in my assumptions, withdrawing money from a partner bank is definitely advantageous to the traveler compared to any other ATM card withdrawal (my credit union charge is 1.5%, of which 1% is the conversion fee charged by Visa).
Michael is offline  
Jul 18th, 2010, 10:20 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 2,420
Be sure to take the number the bank will give you so you can call if there are problems.

If using BofA be VERY sure you have that number. (Basically the issues with their "security" department being understaffed and unable to do their job properly were the main reason I changed banks)
CarolA is offline  
Jul 18th, 2010, 10:23 AM
  #16  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 12,961
Okay. If using a partner bank, of course you will get a much more favorable exchange. I unfortunately don't have BofA. But according to Carol, that is a good thing. I am not sweating it. I will figure it all out when we get there. I am bringing some pounds with me.
My mother in law gave me some euros for my teens. I am assuming I can change them easily in the airport for them?
girlonthego is offline  
Jul 18th, 2010, 10:38 AM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 63,239
girlonthego: "If using a partner bank, of course you will get a much more favorable exchange."

Not true. You will almost certainly get exactly the same (or almost exactly the same) exchange rate. The only advantage to using a partner bank is the lack of ATM fee. BofA normally charges $5 per withdrawal - by using a partner bank you'd save that.

But - for example, my bank only charges $2.50 and my credit union charges $1 so no big deal.

I have NO idea what Michael's 23% charge was - no ATM transaction I've ever done has had anything like that. He may be confusing the 'buy' and 'sell' rates -- I don't know. Whatever it was - that is just confusing you/the issue.

You will not suffer using ANY ATM card.
janisj is offline  
Jul 18th, 2010, 11:01 AM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 20,479
janisj,

Because I do not have the actual withdrawal slip with me, I do not know if I withdrew 200€ or 250€, although I suspect the latter, for which I was charged only $318.19 instead of the expected $337.40 according to xe.com. In other words, withdrawing from a partner bank is definitely advantageous.
Michael is offline  
Jul 18th, 2010, 11:26 AM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 63,239
"In other words, withdrawing from a partner bank is definitely advantageous."

Not in my experience -- hundreds of withdrawals over 20+ years. The exchange rate doesn't vary almost at all bank to bank/machine to machine.

You say you don't even remember how much you withdrew -- could have been €200 or €220 or €250 or ?? Are you sure you are not comparing the buy and sell rates? Or did you withdraw cash from a non-bank ATM? Those are not regulated and there could be tacked on fees that your bank converted to $.

But in any case -- the RATE is not decided by the ATM-owning bank. The rate is determined by your own bank/system. You asked the bank in France for xx € and it gave you that. How much you paid is calculated when it transaction is processed by your issuer.
janisj is offline  
Jul 18th, 2010, 11:28 AM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 63,239
Meant to say >> How much you paid is calculated when it transaction is processed by your issuer, and it doesn't increase the rate depending on which bank you used.
janisj is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 03:56 AM.