For Australian Cyclists travelling and touring OS
Hello I'm looking at my options for accessing money while cycle touring in North America for 5 months.
Last year I used Multi-cash passport while in Europe for 3 months, it was great with no ATM fees but it's exchange rate is poor and it charges a percentage every time I reload money into the account.
I have a QANTAS Cash card which I got for free, I'm researching into it if it's better for me. Anyone used his card?
For purchases overseas I use a 28Degrees Mastercard...no OS transaction fees..., Cashouts attract a 3% surcharge capped at $4.
For cash I use my visa debit although there is charges but the exchange rate is good.
I do have a Qantas cash card and the virgin version but have never used them
I'm heading to London tomorrow then travelling through 12 different countries. We are using a debit card we bought at the Post office, and loaded up with 6 different currencies. However, we have travelled through Asia a number of times and usually pay a small fee to withdraw cash from ATMs. The only one I have been concerned about was an ATM in Malaysia with Bank of Islam logos.
Giant TCR 0
Nobody looks back on their life....and remembers the nights they got plenty of sleep !!
Check with your bank, ours has a partner agreement with some banks in other countries. This allows fee free withdrawals from the partner ATMs using our current ATM card.
bychosis (bahy-koh-sis): A mental disorder of delusions indicating impaired contact with a reality of no bicycles.
Last year in Italy and France we actually did this the other way around (but we used a Visa credit card). With 28 Degrees we carried a credit balance and drew cash from it, however 28 Degrees have now applied a charge to cash withdrawals
Riding bikes in traffic - what seems dangerous is usually safe; what seems safe is often more dangerous.
Citibank Plus Visa Debit.
Read up on it on the whirlpool forum and frequent flyer forum.
Don't leave it too late to apply.
http://www.australianfrequentflyer.com. ... 48640.html
The only issue I have with Citibank is that from what I have read you can't lock in the exchange rate. Aus$us is 93 cents at the moment a high over the past year.
From what I have read, there are three options. Use Citibank or my local bank and hope the exchange rate stays the same.
Use travel cards where it's free to load money but have to pay to use ATMs, Qantas Cash is free to load but cost $2 per ATM use.
Or use a travel card like Mulit-cash passport where it cost 1% to load money but ATMs are free.
I'm going for 149 days, so if I use an ATM 100 times qantas will cost me $200 which is the same as adding $20 000 to my multi-cash passport in terms of fees. Exchange rates are a little different so maybe QANTAS having a higher exchange rate will even it out.
I travel a lot and I just use my regular ATM card and visa.
I strongly suggest having two credit cards and two ways to access cash in case one of your cards gets scammed and has to be cancelled. Nothing worse than having no way to pay for anything.
I stay away from cash exchanges at the airport etc as their exchange rates are horrific.
No matter what method you use it will cost you a bit one way or another in fees and exchange rate margins. If you travel, you just have to live with this cost.
Yep, me too - if your card is lost or stolen it's inconvenient no matter whether it's a debit card or a credit card, but unauthorised transactions will be refunded. I always have a backup card. BTW, before you go, it's a good idea to inform your bank that you will be using your card overseas.
Some terminals (in NZ for instance) allow payment in $AUD. But forex fees are difficult to avoid, and currency fluctuations generally don't amount to much.
I've had large currency fluctuations, say 30%! Over all I've won rather than lost .. You can get lucky. We are on a reasonable high at the moment though.
forex fees can be 2.5%
Travel with at least 2 cards from different banks. And one should be a credit card .. just in case you really need a large purchase - eg immediate flight home.
Your wallet should have the days cash in it and some old expired credit cards. Never cut up your old cards .. useful things those bits of plastic. If a robber wants your wallet give to to them, you loose little.
Don't forget to take Aud cash along.
Cash from the local ATM, is by far the cheapest way and it is accepted everywhere. We've taken it all over Asia, Iran, India. Never go to a European moneychanger at the airport.
Security is no different. If you take out cash from a foreign atm and lose it, its gone. Lose a credit card and its tougher.
We also now use a Bankwest Platinum card. Easy to transfer money round online and safe.
No overseas transaction fees and you can always put your own money, in saving you on any cash advance.
Take at least five hundred in AUD cash for emergencies.
Local currency from the ATM.
At least two credit/debit cards, preferably one Visa and one MasterCard. Open up a citi bank, even if just as a back up, there is no monthly fee, and the debit card will be useful for online shopping after you get back.
Don't assume that your card will work, I had a OZ HSBC card not work at a US HSBC ATM. Came back and it suddenly started working again, HSBC couldn't give an explanation.
Call the banks up before you leave, some banks recommend it so they don't cancel the card due to abnormal transactions.
Use two wallets and spilt the cash and cards between the, also make a photocopy of the passport or a scanned version on the phone etc
I had a very similar deal with a wizard mastercard. There was no cash withdrawal fee, although cash withdrawals accrued interest straight away. I got around this by loading it up with cash before hand, or via netbanking while travelling.
For me, the best part was being able to take out small amounts as I needed them, rather than big chunks of cash.
Take AUD as back up/emergency, if you need to use it you exchange it at the time. Otherwise just bring it all back. 500 is enough for accomdation/food etc for a little while and its not too much cash to carry around.
Bah - it's absolutely pointless carrying $AUD in North America - just get $US or $CAD from an ATM on arrival.
Last edited by RonK on Thu Apr 17, 2014 4:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
You are assuming that your ATM card will work.
You are assuming that your ATM card will work.[/quote]
My ATM card works even in Kathmandu.
I looked up the qantas card and the exchange rate is not as good as travelex although the travelex Web site is not the easiest to find out any over charges
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Didn't I just mentioned how my HSBC Australia card didn't work at HSBC USA's ATM, tried two different branches as well. Wasn't cancelled or anything, and worked at the first ATM when I got back. Luckily on that particular trip the non defunt:( NAB Gold was the primary and the HSBC was the secondary card.
Cards should work, but not always. Besides its just 500 or so in cash, get it in hundreds, and you won't even know you are carrying it.
Ok check your card works before you go and just withdraw from the ATM as you go or use your Credit Card. You'll find the cost difference is a small % of your total trip costs.
The banks will sting you either way, trust me ...until recently I ran this business for a bank.
That is why you don't rely on just one card.
How would you be able to check whether the card will work before you get there and use it? This is the crux of having some AUD as backup. I have never actually need to use as yet. But if the network is down or some sort of communication issue (which is what I suspect is the cause of the HSBC problem), wouldn't it be better to have a little cash on you?
BTW. That particular HSBC card has worked for me in Asia, Europe, and NZ.
Yes, but what is the problem with having some cash on you?
Back in the old days USD was the thing to carry... most people knew their exchange rate from USD so could work out what it was worth. These days ? I rather like our cash - water proof! .. but it is not wash proof - shrinks with heat... I think the most universal cash now is the euro... I'd prefer it to the USD. But the AUD is ok at banks and exchange places. Not so good in a back alley.
Do get a PIN for your card .. essential in parts of Europe even over the counter purchases ... the signature is not enough.
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