Thursday, August 5, 2010
Things to Consider When Changing Money
Since you are going to travel abroad, you will need to have your money changed. While there are various means to change currency, the best and easiest way to do is through ATMs. ATM machines are found almost anywhere in the world.
Before traveling to places, you need to know whether to bring cash, credit and ATM cards or travelers check. Cash is always the best payment method, but some still prefer to use their credit cards to minimize the hassle of bringing huge amounts of money when shopping. Although traveler's check are rarely used nowadays, it is a good fallback should you encounter any problems with your credit or ATM cards.
Do not freak out should there be a case wherein you cannot withdraw cash out of an ATM. It does not always mean that there may be a problem with your card as sometimes there is a different process when it comes to cashing out money in foreign countries as some electronic transactions need to be submitted and approved by the bank. There will also be cases when your card may not be read by cash terminals or counter's POS (Point of Sale systems) in less developed countries, or ATM machines not reading your card because it does not accept ATM machines from foreign countries. Sometimes you can check for another ATM machine because it may be possible that the ATM machine just ran out of money.
Some people think that it is best if they have their currency changed before travelling is a very good idea. Though in some cases this may be true, it is not always necessary. Banks and money changers are usual in travel destinations and airports. You will be able to find ATM machines almost everywhere. Be advised though to check for government advisories regarding the use of ATM cards from foreign countries because not all banks may accept your card and just by specific banks. Some people reason that they want to change their money ahead of time to avoid possible and dramatic changes in exchange rates, you may want to follow this lead as well.
If you will have to cross border to visit a country with a different currency, know if they accept general currencies like Euros or Dollars and also know where you can change money if necessary.
If you just want to go ahead and familiarize yourself with the currency you'll be carrying, you can have your money changed a bit earlier. This is also a good practice so not to fumble when paying for goods and services when you get to your travel destination. Also try to know the worth of a bill or coin so to have at least a rough estimate of how much you are spending in your currency.
One other good pointer is to change your money in reputable places like banks and accredited money changers. Do not deal with black market money exchangers as you are most likely to be scammed and lose your money.
Do not exchange too much cash than what you really need. You might end up paying a lot just to change them back to the original currency you traded them for. Also, some countries have a limit on the maximum amount of their currency that you can bring out of their country.