US Debit Cards and European ATMs

Old Feb 5th, 2014, 04:07 PM
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US Debit Cards and European ATMs

This April we will travel to France, England and Ireland. Will our US debit cards which do not have "chips" work in their ATMs to withdraw money from our US account?
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Old Feb 5th, 2014, 04:15 PM
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Chip/PIN relates to credit cards. You ATM/debit cards will work just fine.
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Old Feb 5th, 2014, 04:17 PM
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Yes. Just be sure to notify your bank that you'll be overseas so they don't suspect fraud and freeze your account.
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Old Feb 5th, 2014, 04:20 PM
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We used reloadable prepaid cards ( Visa) all through Italy. No worries about corruption of your own bank account.
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Old Feb 5th, 2014, 04:27 PM
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>>We used reloadable prepaid cards
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Old Feb 5th, 2014, 04:35 PM
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As noted, no problem. You will need a 4-diget pin code and you should check with your bank regarding your daily limit. Some daily limits are set as low as $300 USD, or about €220 EUR/day.

Prepaid cards are a ripoff!
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Old Feb 5th, 2014, 04:38 PM
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As noted, no problem. You will need a 4-diget pin code and you should check with your bank regarding your daily limit. Some daily limits are set as low as $300 USD, or about €220 EUR/day.

Prepaid cards are a ripoff!
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Old Feb 5th, 2014, 04:56 PM
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I always take two debit cars and a credit card just in case one gets eaten by the machine. Many banks have inside machines for extra safety. You can still buy tickets for trains at the ticket window most of the time. Some automatic machines only take the pin and chip. If you are driving you have to get gas where there is an attendant many times.
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Old Feb 5th, 2014, 05:01 PM
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>

Terrible idea!
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Old Feb 5th, 2014, 05:50 PM
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I notify my bank and also my credit card company that I'll be going to Europe. Before I began to do that, I had an important purchase denied.
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Old Feb 6th, 2014, 06:48 AM
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Know who is your debit card's partner bank is, so if like BankOfAmerica you will not pay any withdrawal fees. A biggy for me-some overseas banks/machines do not accept pins beginning with zero (0), so I had to change my pin before we left and that could not be done online but in person.
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Old Feb 6th, 2014, 07:58 AM
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Chip and Pin relates to Debit cards too, not just CC's.
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Old Feb 6th, 2014, 08:33 AM
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jan47ete: Know who is your debit card's partner bank is, so if like BankOfAmerica you will not pay any withdrawal fees.

To clarify: generally European ATM machines do not charge any fee for use. YOUR financial institution may charge the fee. Plus, you may get charged a currency conversion fee (typically Visa's 1% that is passed on to you - sometimes more).

I never pay any fee at any ATM in Europe because my credit union doesn't charge a use fee or charge me for currency conversion. It's nice not to have to worry about a partner bank!
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Old Feb 6th, 2014, 08:48 AM
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>>Chip and Pin relates to Debit cards too, not just CC's.
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Old Feb 6th, 2014, 02:37 PM
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As others have mentioned, just be sure to check with your bank on daily withdrawal limits and any fees for using foreign ATMs. Something else to consider, though... it may be a good idea to set up a dedicated bank account for your trip, or at least have access to a 2nd account, just in case. Back in 2010, I did almost the exact same trip, and I had an online Capital One bank account for the trip, using their no-fee ATM card. But, about 1/2 way into the trip, I started having problems. At first, I could only withdraw small amounts (£50, and then only £20 at a time), until about a day later where any ATM refused to dispense money to me. With the time zone difference, it was very difficult to contact Capital One, and I had to use Skype over a poor internet connection. Since I was wasting valuable vacation time, I gave up and was able to do an online transfer from my Capital One account to my regular bank account, and use that account's ATM card. I wound up paying fees, but that was a lot better than losing more time trying to sort things out.
So, either make sure you have a very easy and reliable means of contacting your bank from overseas, or have a backup account that you can easily transfer money over to, just in case you have a problem.
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Old Feb 11th, 2014, 10:04 PM
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A few questions of clarification, if I may piggyback on to this thread:
* I have now a chip and sig card...will that be adequate?
* Will I be able to use my non-chip debit card at ATM's?
* As a poster above said, do I really need to change my pin if it begins with a 0?
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Old Feb 11th, 2014, 10:17 PM
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You don't need a chip for ATM machines. You need it when using a credit card or for using a debit card to make purchases.

Your chip and signature card may still not work in some places or in cases where the merchant doesn't know how to process the transaction. My Visa card is a "chip and pin but chip and signature when a person is involved." Last May, it worked everywhere I went (Belgium, France, Luxembourg) and I always had to sign, so I guess the merchants I dealt with knew how to handle the signature part. I used it in just a few train ticket machines (twice used at Paris Metro machines successfully).

My non-chip ATM card also worked fine at ATMs in all of those same countries.

I can't help you with the "0 first digit of PIN" question.
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Old Feb 12th, 2014, 12:51 AM
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Some of these answers can vary slightly depending upon the country in which one banks. However, in all cases, whatever card you normally use to withdraw money from an ATM at home, this same card will also withdraw money from any French bank ATM.

ATMs simply read and compare the pin you enter with the information on your card. There is no pin restriction on leading zeros or even on 6 digit pins though the machine will probably only read and compare the first 4 digits.

Beyond that, one may or may not have problems making purchases with a magnetic debit/credit card. Those carrying pin and signature credit cards will have more options. Those lucky enough to have a true pin and chip card, one in which all transactions require a pin, will never have a problem.

My PedFed pin and chip (defaults to signature) credit card has functioned every place I have tried it: kiosks, toll booths, even at pay-at-the-pump gas stations (at Carrefour).
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Old Feb 13th, 2014, 08:53 AM
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The reloadable Credit Card( in Canada, it Bank of Montreal) costs us $20.00 a year to use in Italy and here in NA and you can load thousands on it( if you have it) For us, not worrying about our regular bank account being compromised was worth it and not a "terrible idea"
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Old Feb 13th, 2014, 12:57 PM
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If you are happy snowgirls then that´s wonderful but as a recommendation to others, the reloadable debit/credit card has many drawbacks.

1. Upfront cost
2. No protection if lost
3. Unfavorable rates of exchange
4. It offers no guarantee that your regular bank account is protected. Any bank account can be compromised.
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