Author Topic: International trip from USA, money exchanging etc  (Read 1724 times)

RosieTR

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International trip from USA, money exchanging etc
« on: October 02, 2015, 08:32:36 PM »
We're planning an international trip for the first time in about a decade. This time, driving from US to Canada :-) Since it's kind of stupid we've never been there and it's a big birthday for me.

Currently the exchange rate is great between the US and Canada, if coming from the US. So, would it be prudent to start changing a few hundred $ here and there to prepare? I would normally potentially use a CC (despite the exchange fees) but since we plan on going in about a month when the debt showdown might be occurring, the dollar may drop a lot. Thanks Congress!

We prepaid for most of the entertainment and have a hotel reserved with the CC but will need some food and gas $.


sirdoug007

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Re: International trip from USA, money exchanging etc
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2015, 10:50:22 PM »
Get a credit card with no foreign transaction fees (chase sapphire preferred is really good) and use that.  Any exchanging money you do will have fees that are unnecessary.

Don't play exchange rate betting games. Just go and enjoy yourself. If you need cash use an ATM in Canada. Works everywhere around the world and your bank gets MUCH better exchange rates than you ever will changing cash.


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okits

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Re: International trip from USA, money exchanging etc
« Reply #2 on: October 03, 2015, 01:30:00 AM »
Yeah, ATM once you get here. Find out what your bank charges for international debit card use (if anything); if it's a big, unavoidable fee just withdraw a big amount once.

In a pinch, many hospitality/tourism-focused businesses will take U.S. cash.  You won't get a great exchange rate on it, but it's widely-accepted currency.

If you think you'll be tipping (baggage handlers, drivers, hotel staff), bring a whole bunch of U.S. $1 bills in good condition for that.  Our smallest denomination bill is $5, so if I'm tipping anything less than that it's coins, and I always feel like kind of a tool slipping someone coins (bulky to carry, too.)

Hope you enjoy your holiday!  :-)

grantmeaname

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Re: International trip from USA, money exchanging etc
« Reply #3 on: October 03, 2015, 02:35:31 AM »
Join your credit union, and you'll probably get a no-foreign-transaction-fee debit card. Then just use the debit card to pay for things and to take cash out at ATMs.

RosieTR

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Re: International trip from USA, money exchanging etc
« Reply #4 on: October 03, 2015, 08:21:53 PM »
Thank you!

jzb11

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Re: International trip from USA, money exchanging etc
« Reply #5 on: October 03, 2015, 08:29:23 PM »
Credit card without foreign transaction fees + ATM ftw