Yet another Euro question...

Old Aug 16th, 2006, 05:34 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 279
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Yet another Euro question...

Sorry for yet another question as it relates to exchanging....hopefully someone can help...

Would it be less expensive to convert money prior to our trip (we are changing some with our bank regardless) or to just take some Euro with us prior to the trip and use ATM's when there?

Do we get "hit" with an ATM withdrawl charge each time? If so, it seems like exchanging alot prior would be cost effective?

We plan on using our Capitol One Visa as much as possible when eating out, etc...

Kathryncee is offline  
Old Aug 16th, 2006, 05:38 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 70,413
Likes: 0
Received 50 Likes on 7 Posts
"Sorry for yet another question as it relates to exchanging....hopefully someone can help..."

By starting this way - I'd assume you had read some of the previous threads you talk about.

short answer:

Use an ATM card after you are in Europe - for all the reasons mentioned in those threads. ATMs are cheaper, easier and safer than bringing cash from home . . . . .
janisj is online now  
Old Aug 16th, 2006, 05:38 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 937
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
this many answer a few questions

http://fodors.com/forums/threadselect.jsp?fid=2
JandaO is offline  
Old Aug 16th, 2006, 05:43 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 70,413
Likes: 0
Received 50 Likes on 7 Posts
JandaO: That is just a link to the Forum. You need to go back into which ever thread you want to link and click on its title. That will bring up the actual URL of the thread. Then you can post it here.
janisj is online now  
Old Aug 16th, 2006, 06:06 PM
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 279
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
sorry, can't find the link?
Essentially what I need feedback on is do you get hit with a transaction fee each time you use an ATM there?
Kathryncee is offline  
Old Aug 16th, 2006, 06:06 PM
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 279
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Also- I have read some other threads but still can't figure this out....

ATM several times with fees associated or one time fee of exchange prior to leaving?
Kathryncee is offline  
Old Aug 16th, 2006, 06:18 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 10,605
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I have a free checking acct at a bank that rebates any ATM charges incurred. Since Europe doesn't charge for ATM withdrawals, I've never had a charge for getting cash with my debit card. (Visa Int'l will pass a 1% conversion fee, that's it). I only keep enough money in this account for my trip, and I use the debit card to pay for hotel, tickets, cash, etc. We also each take one different credit card for emergency/backup.

You can change money in advance but then you have to carry the cash around. If you want to start off with a bit, just get $100 equiv. at the airport. If you really think you want to get a stash, order it from BankofAmerica.com and pick it up at a branch to avoid a delivery charge.
Travelnut is offline  
Old Aug 16th, 2006, 06:20 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,916
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Lousiest rate: Exchanging dollars for euros in the US.

Slightly less lousy rate: Exchanging dollars for euros in Europe.

Best rate: Using ATMs in Europe. Ask you bank to increase your daily withdrawal limit so you can limit your ATM stops and pay less in transaction fees.
TimS is offline  
Old Aug 16th, 2006, 06:28 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,540
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Why would you bother exchanging before you go? What could you possibly need the Euros for? No one in the US will take them and if you are buying duty free on the plane you can use plastic. I just don't get it.

However, to answer your other question...depending on your bank, you may or may not have incur an ATM withdrawl charge. So, if that is a problem, ask your bank to raise your daily withdrawl limit for the trip and just use ATMs less often (get out 400 Euros once instead of 200 twice, for example). However, even despite the withdrawl charge (really just a nominal amount), you will be better off in the end with ATMs as the best exchange rate is with ATMs.

Have a good trip
taitai is offline  
Old Aug 16th, 2006, 06:34 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,890
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
If you are being hit with high ATM fees it is YOUR bank that is doing it. This is a bad bank. Get a different bank - since they are probably hitting you up for fees in the US too.

Your bank should not charge you anything to take out your own money - EVER. Even Citibank (which gives nothing away) does not charge a single penny for ATM withdrawals no matter where they are from. (If you pay $1 to use the ATM at the drug store it is the owner of the ATM that is charging that fee - for your convenience - not your bank.)

So - getting money from an ATM in europe should not result in any FEE. It will incur a small (depending on your bank 1% to 3%) difference between the interbank exchange rate (valid only for millions of dollars) and the rate they give you.

(If you change cash - either at your bank in the US or a bank in europe or a Bureau de Change there will be an 8% to 10% difference in the rate of exchange - and sometimes a fee as well. By doing this, rather than using ATMs, with $1000 you will be throwing away about $70.)
nytraveler is offline  
Old Aug 16th, 2006, 06:34 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 70,413
Likes: 0
Received 50 Likes on 7 Posts
"ATM several times with fees associated or one time fee of exchange prior to leaving?"

Even if your bank charges $5 per transaction like BofA (which is about the highest) you will still come out far ahead getting your cash out of ATMs in Europe. Most US banks only charge between $1 and $3.

While you may only have a one-time "fee" getting euro at home but you will also pay at least 10 cents more PER EURO. And sometimes even more. Plus you'd have the problem of carrying a lot of cash w/ you which isn't very wise - you get pickpocketed and it is gone . . . .
janisj is online now  
Old Aug 16th, 2006, 06:36 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 2,224
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Citibank doesn't charge a fee for non-Citibank ATM withdrawals? Are you sure about this?
fishee is offline  
Old Aug 16th, 2006, 08:06 PM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,098
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
So in a nutshell: In Europe, ATMs associated with a financial institution (e.g., a bank) do not charge a fee for withdrawals. But your home bank might charge you for withdrawals from ATMs they don't own--you have to check with your bank. Even if your bank does charge a few bucks for such withdrawals, these ATMs will give the best exchange rate available at the time of your transaction.

Just be aware that there are some ATMs in parts of Europe that are not associated with financial institutions, and these can charge and extra fee and whatever exchange rate they want. I've never seen one, but I have seen articles and posts about such ATMs.

Buying euros in the USA is usually (always in my experience) very expensive--even if they don't charge a fee, they give a terrible exchange rate.

That's a fairly good sized nut.
RufusTFirefly is offline  
Old Aug 16th, 2006, 08:34 PM
  #14  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 279
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
that is a good size nut.. thank you.
Okay.. I'm going to mabey exchange 100 before I go just to have some.. then ATM's.. thanks for all the clarification.. I appreciate it!
Kathryncee is offline  
Old Aug 16th, 2006, 08:59 PM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 937
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
oops, my bad. here is the thread I wanted to share.

http://fodors.com/forums/threadselec...2&tid=34851446
JandaO is offline  
Old Aug 16th, 2006, 09:07 PM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 937
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
and this one
http://fodors.com/forums/threadselec...2&tid=34851446

JandaO is offline  
Old Aug 16th, 2006, 09:09 PM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 937
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
dang it..
I need to go to bed.

goodnight.
JandaO is offline  
Old Aug 17th, 2006, 06:28 PM
  #18  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 279
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Jando- get some sleep and thank you again! Kate
Kathryncee is offline  
Old Aug 17th, 2006, 06:42 PM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 25
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I've been travelling to Europe with students for the past ten years. We used to use travelers cheques but that's pointless today. The best rates are usually when you use your bank card at an ATM. I have a monthly fee at my bank that covers unlimited card use. It's worth it.
skye2006 is offline  
Old Aug 17th, 2006, 08:12 PM
  #20  
kp
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,279
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Just back from Paris and used ATM, credit card and Euro I had purchased from the bank in the US. Euro from the US bank cost about .06 more per $1 than the ATM cost and almost .09 more than using my credit card. I was visiting smaller towns and couldn't be sure that ATM's would be available when I needed cash.
kp is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -