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phylle Mar 24th, 2014 07:05 AM

Any suggestions on how many euros we should take for an 8 day trip to florence and Rome.
Hotels are paid for with cc. We will be using cc pretty much but want cash as well. Prefer not to use cash machines so we want to bring the euros with us.

kybourbon Mar 24th, 2014 07:08 AM

None. Use your ATM card upon arrival to euro. You will get a lousy exchange rate if you get euro in the states.

china_cat Mar 24th, 2014 07:13 AM

wonder why you prefer not to use cash machines? the exchange rate is better than the US, most do not charge fees (unless your bank does) and its safer than carrying around large amounts of cash.

You'll need cash for tipping, taxis, less expensive meals, small souvenir purchases. It's kind of hard to guess what these expenses will be for you, since everybody is different. I find I always spend more cash than I think I'm going to.

vincenzo32951 Mar 24th, 2014 07:28 AM

If you insist on taking euros and not using ATMs, then OK: You need 1,000 euros for an 8-day trip. Then, if you have any left over at the end of the trip, exchange them at the airport and get shortchanged again.

Keep in mind that you're asking this question of people who have no idea what your spending habits and interests are.

phylle Mar 24th, 2014 07:57 AM

So get euros at airport in florence when we land at the ATM? Then exchange any left over euros at fco ATM when we leave. I presume the atm's in Italy will limit the amount we can withdraw at one time, so we will have to make a crew withdrawals. Does this seem like a better plan rather than bringing 1500 euros with us.

BigRuss Mar 24th, 2014 08:05 AM

< Prefer not to use cash machines so we want to bring the euros with us.>

And what is your logic behind this? Would you prefer to pay more in exchange fees by getting ripped off by a US bank (because that's what happens if you exchange in the US)?

You cannot "exchange" at an ATM. You withdraw. At an Italian ATM, you can withdraw Euros. Don't withdraw too much because your leftovers will be useless in the US. If you have a significant amount of Euros left when you are ready to fly home, then EXCHANGE them at the foreign exchange counter. You will be gouged, but so be it.

thursdaysd Mar 24th, 2014 08:06 AM

How do you think you are going to "exchange any left over euros" at an ATM?

What on earth do you think you are going to spend 1500 euros on in eight days if you are using CCs for major purchases?

Draw a couple of hundred on arrival and replenish as needed. Wear a money belt. If your bank charges high fees find a better bank for travel.

janisj Mar 24th, 2014 08:07 AM

>>Then exchange any left over euros at fco ATM when we leave.<<

No -- you can't exchange € at an ATM… They dispense money, you can't get $ back out. But if you do things right you won't have any/much cash left when you fly out. Get a couple hundred € when you arrive and then when/if you need most in a day to two, withdraw more at a city ATM. There is no need at all to carry around tons of cash.

>>Does this seem like a better plan rather than bringing 1500 euros with us.<<

Absolutely 100%

janisj Mar 24th, 2014 08:07 AM

we were all posting at the same time :)

sparkchaser Mar 24th, 2014 08:08 AM

<i>What on earth do you think you are going to spend 1500 euros on in eight days if you are using CCs for major purchases?</i>

High end prostitutes.

bab706 Mar 24th, 2014 08:09 AM

There are ATM's all over Rome and Florence. You will find using the ATM machines convenient - there is a button to press for English transactions. Just let your bank know the dates you will be traveling. We take out as much as we need per day - we don't carry a lot of cash on us. We prefer not to use a credit card for daily purchases as we have experienced credit card fraud in the past.

msteacher Mar 24th, 2014 08:13 AM

A tip on withdrawing cash from ATM... If you want to withdraw 200E, instead withdraw 190. This way you will gat some smaller bills. Many times taxis, street vendors, etc. have a hard time making change for large bills (or at least pretend to).

sparkchaser Mar 24th, 2014 08:20 AM

I don't get the thought process of not wanting to use an ATM. Yeah, I get the potential threat from skimmers but if you use an ATM inside open banks, the threat is minimal.

chartley Mar 24th, 2014 08:27 AM

You will probably need more cash than you anticipate. My experience in Italy is that there are many places that don't take (or don't like to take) credit cards, and times when the card reader doesn't want to work. You will be OK at larger hotels and other large businesses, but it is better to choose a restaurant by what's on the menu, than by whether they accept credit cards.

Dukey1 Mar 24th, 2014 08:32 AM

I wish I thought I could go to Italy and only spend 1500 Euro.

kybourbon Mar 24th, 2014 08:32 AM

You don't want to have euro left unless you are planning another trip and want a 100€ or so to have for your arrival day the next time.

It helps to know the conversion rates when withdrawing. If you are using an ATM card from a credit union, they might have a lower withdrawal limit. Mine only allows $400 per day which is only about 300€ at the moment. You cannot select to withdraw 400€ if your limit is $400. As pointed out, you need to tell your bank when/where or they will freeze your card. You can't select to withdraw from a savings account so make sure your card is for a checking account.

amer_can Mar 24th, 2014 08:38 AM

msteacher you made a good point..less ammounts than various 100Es..great idea ..smaller bills!!! ATMs. are the way to go in Europe..Never had a problem but watch out if any have a charge. Some in Spain do. Don't know about Italy. Put some of the paper in the money belt and off you go!! Happy trails!!

StCirq Mar 24th, 2014 09:01 AM

It's close to insane to bring 1500 euros with you from the States. First, you will have paid 7-10% more for them than you would just using an ATM once you've arrived, plus there's the added risk of carrying that kind of cash with you. That kind of thinking is decades old. Just use your ATM card once there, and inform your bank you'll be conducting overseas transactions. And if you happen to bank at an institution that charges you anything more than the 1% transaction fee, think about opening an account with a bank that doesn't.

Toucan Mar 24th, 2014 09:03 AM

Take a couple of cards that don't charge foreign transaction fees (Capital One, Barclays, Credit Union etc.), make a withdrawal at the airport from an ATM, NOT a money exchange booth! I start with 200 Euros from each card (190 going forward per msteacher's excellent suggestion), this will establish early on that your cards are working. Then just withdraw every couple of days or as needed with the goal of having very few Euros left at the end of the trip.

I also stash two $100 bills somewhere on me (usually in my shoes) just in case.

bilboburgler Mar 24th, 2014 09:55 AM

I understand that hi end prostitutes would have a visa machine :-)

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