Traveling abroad is all about getting used to that country's currency. Many destinations use their own, and it's generally best to exchange money upon arriving at the new location. But, how can you ensure a reasonable currency conversion rate?
Whenever you need money for shopping on vacation, withdrawing money from the ATM remains a popular and somewhat cheaper method than others. You may also be lucky and find your bank in the city you are in at the moment. ATM's are usually expensive in exotic destinations regardless, and you might not save up much. Many travelers notice the charges are quite high when comparing to back home. A good idea is to browse different banks and then select the one that is the most cost effective.
Another thing to take into account are the ''no fee'' places. Even if it looks like you will be saving money by cutting down on commissions, this is not always the case. Some of these bureaus are tricky, and you will need to pay close attention to the rate before making any transaction. Make sure to check the Interbank rates as often as possible, as the rates change pretty much daily. If you choose to use this method, it may end up pretty costly as the bank generally charges about 7 % to 9% of the amount withdrawn. Furthermore, you will also need to consider the conversion rate. This option is best to be avoided unless you have no other method.
Perhaps you need a lot of money at once, and in that case your best bet is contacting your bank. Ask them to raise your withdrawal limit to the amount you think you will need. For example, if you plan an expensive shopping trip, you will probably need more cash at once. In that case, pay attention to the limit of each ATM and withdraw small amounts from each. Many machines do not allow withdrawals over a certain limit, so learn about it beforehand.
Use your credit card whenever possible and avoid withdrawing cash. This option is particularly useful if you want to make one large purchase. You will still be paying a fee, however most often this fee is more affordable than other options. In addition to that, some banks do not charge a commission, so check to see if your bank made the list. Even if a fee is required, it usually stays between 1% and 3%, which is still within an affordable range.
Whenever you are offered to pay in US dollars abroad, you should probably decline. This is actually one of the most expensive options when it comes to currency conversion. The dynamic currency conversion includes some hidden fees you are not told about, and the exchange rate is generally bad.
Once you know what all your options are, this will enable you to make better choices when it comes to spending on vacation. In the end, your vacation or work trip will end up less stressful and much more enjoyable.