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Forums > Social Discussion > Global Cash-Card advice needed

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Durbs
BRONZE Member since Sep 2001

Durbs

Classically British
Location: Epsom, Surrey, England

Total posts: 5688
Posted:Just wondering if I could get some recommendations on a bank to use on my round-the-world trip...

Was going to go with Smile.co.uk as I'm already with them, so expanding my account to a joint account with Mrs Durbs will be very easy.
However, having just spoken to them - if we use the debit card (Which is Visa, so more globally accepted than Maestro I reckon) to withdraw cash, we get charged both 2.5% "conversion" fee PLUS (!) another 2% Visa fee - 4.5% seems a heck of a lot to just withdraw cash and I can see it adding up over a year.
If we use the card over a counter, it's still 2% (which I'm guessing is fairly standard)

Does anyone have any recommendations, or is this pretty standard?

We'll be taking some travellers cheques, but mainly as back-up incase of card loss - I don't think they'd be the most practical form of cash to take to a lot of places. We've also got our own personal credit cards for making any major/personal puchases, but we're after a debit card to use for everyday expenses.

Cheers


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maus
BRONZE Member since Mar 2017

maus

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Sihanoukville, cambodia

Total posts: 4191
Posted:as a general rule i think you'll get charged with most banks,
although i know with TSB used to do a special travel account programme in which you only got charged a VERY small percentage in countries outside of europe, and countries within europe were free.

not sure if they still do it now they've merged into lloydsTSB, but it may be worth checking out??

hope thats of some use,and enjoy your trip! biggrin


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TinklePants
GOLD Member since Jul 2005

TinklePants

Clique Infiltrator, Cunning Linguist and Master Debator
Location: Edinburgh burgh burrrrrr

Total posts: 4217
Posted:Ummmm.... Take lots of cash???

Hide it in your socks! I went to Turkey last year with 700 spending money in my socks. It works ubblol


Always use "so's your face" and "only on Tuesdays" in as many conversations possible

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Durbs
BRONZE Member since Sep 2001

Durbs

Classically British
Location: Epsom, Surrey, England

Total posts: 5688
Posted:Hmmm - 10,000 in socks could be both risky and un-comfortable wink

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TinklePants
GOLD Member since Jul 2005

TinklePants

Clique Infiltrator, Cunning Linguist and Master Debator
Location: Edinburgh burgh burrrrrr

Total posts: 4217
Posted:and would cause suspicion at airports hehe

Always use "so's your face" and "only on Tuesdays" in as many conversations possible

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spritie
SILVER Member since Sep 2001

spritie

Pooh-Bah
Location: Galveston, TX

Total posts: 2014
Posted:Banks charing a fee to use the card at another ATM (one that isn't theirs) is very standard in the states. I have been told that using a bank issued ATM/debit card will get you a better rate on cash exchange that using the places designated solely for that. Even with the bank fees that I am charged, I have noticed this to be true.

I have also learned from experience that travelers checks are difficult to deal with overseas (both in Europe and Africa). In Italy, there was only 1 bank in town that was willing to change them for me, and it was a hassle since I didn't know Italian. I also had similar problems with cities in Poland with them. Sometimes, you can get the larger hotel chains (and the more pricey ones) to change them for you, but they put a hefty fee on them.

I would certainly say stick with the debit card as you can use it almost anywhere. I would pull largish chunks of money out at a time, and carry the cash around with me for my daily/weekly purchases while traveling. This eliminates constantly raking up fees for pulling out small amounts of cash.


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Durbs
BRONZE Member since Sep 2001

Durbs

Classically British
Location: Epsom, Surrey, England

Total posts: 5688
Posted:Yeah... I don't mind paying a fee, but paying 2 fees seems to be taking the piss (or more importantly the money) somewhat - 4.5% over a year is going to add up to a heck of a lot...

LloydsTSB amounted to 4.25% - The helpful person on the phone based in outer-Mongolia didn't really seem to know what I was going on about mind you... smile


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maus
BRONZE Member since Mar 2017

maus

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Sihanoukville, cambodia

Total posts: 4191
Posted:Written by: Durbs



LloydsTSB amounted to 4.25% - The helpful person on the phone based in outer-Mongolia didn't really seem to know what I was going on about mind you... smile



now thats a feeling i know too well....


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_Clare_
BRONZE Member since Oct 2002

_Clare_

Still wiggling
Location: Belfast

Total posts: 5967
Posted:Hey sweetness wave

Go with the Nationwide - they rock.

They don't charge you to take out money on your debit card anywhere in the world (no charges, no fees, and I think, no commission) - and it's Visa so you can use their card in all Visa-accepting machines.

I travelled with it on my trip, and never had any problems.

Their credit card is also great, and the staff are always really helpful when you phone up stuck in some random country with no money. biggrin

http://www.nationwide.co.uk/banking/


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Kyrian


Dreamer
Location: York, England

Total posts: 4308
Posted:I'm thinking nationwide will be your best bet.

4.25%... eek Criminy thats a lot! My so-called stupid US bank only charges 1% conversion fee (and the atm card doubles as a debit card and functions as a credit card as well), and altho it does charge a flat fee everytime you use an atm which isn't theirs, they have branches in most major world cities, and are sprinkled fairly liberally in south america and parts of far east asia. So careful planning and a fair amount of cash carrying can/has yeild(ed) good things smile

If you're near enough to London and nationwide doens't seem to actually be the wonder people keep telling me it is (firepoise isn't the first!) you might try checking with the british citibanks and seeing if they are any good.


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Eera


old hand
Location: In a test pit, Mackay

Total posts: 1107
Posted:Have a look to see if MBNA charge you for overseas withdrawal; they used to charge standard rates in the UK but it was free from overseas ATMs, which was why I used them.

If they've changed, shame on them!

And start keeping your old cards in a crappy wallet, so if you get robbed or held up, they'll take a bunch of useless cards and leave the good ones on you, which you have cunningly hidden in an inaccessable place.

Money belts no longer work; too many people have wised up to them. I usually carry credit cards in the bottom of a pocket that's safety-pinned shut from the inside. It's a hassel to get to in a hurry, but I've not yet found a pickpocket who can undo them without you noticing.


There is a slight possibility that I am not actually right all of the time.

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fluffy napalm fairy


fluffy napalm fairy

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Brum / Dorset / Fairy Land

Total posts: 3638
Posted:Barclays's in [censored]. ubbrollsmile

Geologists do it in the dirt................ spank

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Durbs
BRONZE Member since Sep 2001

Durbs

Classically British
Location: Epsom, Surrey, England

Total posts: 5688
Posted:umm

Cool guys, thanks - think we're going with Nationwide smile


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ben-ja-men
GOLD Member since Jun 2003

ben-ja-men

just lost .... evil init
Location: Adelaide

Total posts: 2474
Posted:id say go the travellers checks as if u have any left over u dont have to repay the conversion whereas with any cash u have left u have paid the currency convertion there and then back again. also i ran into issues with my bank suddenly not working and all my cards did nadda

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourself, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous and talented? Who are you NOT to be?

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