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currency

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
Just wondering what the best thing to do is, I have some american dollars and I need to change them into canadien dollars, am I best doing it here in the UK or doing it when i get to canada. Any ideas?

Cheers

Dave G.
post #2 of 23
Use a credit card for absolutely everything you can. You'll need almost no cash. Get cash at an ATM in Canada. Those american dollars you still have, they're worth so little now, just throw them away.
post #3 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by learn2turn
Those american dollars you still have, they're worth so little now, just throw them away.
Send them to me. I'll make sure that they are properly recycled. If you really want to exchange them, wait until you get to Canada and then go to a bank, you should get a slightly better rate.

Also, use plastic. You might not need any cash at all. Everyone takes it and you get the best exchange rate available.
post #4 of 23
Yup

CC for anything you can use it for.

There's nothing better then getting the exact exchange rate.
post #5 of 23
yeah, right. just use CC for everything. It's better than going to exchange points.
post #6 of 23
Don't bother changing them. You will find in most Canadian resorts they will also take $US. Exchnage rate should be no worse than the cost of changing them.

To convert in the UK you will take a doulble hit on fees plus exchange rates.

By the way, remember also that CC companies rarely use the exact exchange rate but add their own mark-up fee (usually hidden in the rate) of about 2.5%
post #7 of 23
Don't sweat it. Change like $100 usd for pocket cash any old place, then use the CC.
post #8 of 23
Orrrrrrrrrr since as I recall you are coming to Banff for an extended stay you can change it at the bank here when you get here. Better to open an account first as they don't ding you with an extra transaction fee that way. Also custom house currency exchange offers a better rate than the banks if you go during banking hours and no transaction fee. You'll get hit hard trying to exchange to canadian $s in the UK. CIBC is the bank that works for me best in terms of all services and such.

The exchange rate you are offered on your credit card varies a great deal with the card and your home bank. You may do well to check the rate they offer on a given day and compare it to the international cross rates to get a feel for how much of a spread they're taking.

Some businesses will give you a pretty fair rate others will hose you for the hassle factor. In fact if you keep a closer eye on it than the business you might get a better rate than the bank on a given day.
post #9 of 23
Similar to Scots, I confirmed just last week with VISA that they charge 2.5% extra for currency exchange.

Unlike, Scots, I've never seen a retail store or restaurant give an exchange rate anywhere near a bank's rate.

I'm checking on what my bank charges for withdrawing cash at a foreign ATM.

I think your best bet is to shop around locally to get what you think you'll need.
post #10 of 23
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all your help everyone.

L7 were you the guy who told me to bring my skates, if you were I'll see you on Thursday.

All the best for the new year

Cheers

Dave G
post #11 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by pheft
Everyone takes it and you get the best exchange rate available.
Totally untrue.

I don't feel like copying and pasting fine print, but a quick Google on this subject will show the veracity of this.
post #12 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by SnowSnake
Similar to Scots, I confirmed just last week with VISA that they charge 2.5% extra for currency exchange.
Are you guys talking about a credit card or a debit card?

I meant to say use your debit card.

They may charge a few bucks but it's still better then other options.
post #13 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by heinzbeanz
Thanks for all your help everyone.

L7 were you the guy who told me to bring my skates, if you were I'll see you on Thursday.

All the best for the new year

Cheers

Dave G
I think that may have been I. At any rate I think I answered some queries about getting to Fernie and such. I won't be around until the weekend but hopefully around next week with no work nonsense on the plate.
post #14 of 23
Thread Starter 
Look forward to meeting you

Dave G
post #15 of 23
Originally posted by Scalce
Quote:
Are you guys talking about a credit card or a debit card?
I meant to say use your debit card
They may charge a few bucks but it's still better then other options.
]It actually applies to both. My Bank of America/Fleet Bank debit cards ding you for an additional, separately detailed 2% charge every time you use them in a different currency. This seems to be a relatively new way of making money as I don't recall it appearing last year. Personally I find this is actually more irritating than hiding it in the exchange rate!
post #16 of 23
My local Credit Union doesn't charge any fees for using my cards in Canada. It doesn't charge fees for anything, so it may be different than most banks. I use credit because I can keep my checking register accurate. I just pay it off when I get home.
post #17 of 23
My bank has responded to me by saying that a withdrawal at U.S. ATM will result in a $3.00 fee per transaction, plus whatever the ATM charges you. My bank didn't specifically say if there was a percentage on top of the exchange rate, and I'm waiting for them to answer this question more clearly.

So if the ATM charges you, let's say, $1.50, plus the $3.00, that would be 4.5% on a $100 withdrawal. But less than 1% on a $500 withdrawal. I think $500 is the most I can withdraw in one transaction.
post #18 of 23
Isn't it wonderful how banks found a way to make you pay to get to your own money?
post #19 of 23
American Express has probably the best international service in the credit industry. it is not accepted everywhere, but it's darn good and i'm almost positive they won't hit you with exchange rate charges. plus, you can call them collect from anywhere in the world - and the number is right on the card and actually works, unlike most bank numbers.
post #20 of 23
Thread Starter 
I have an american express card but dont like using it because of the extorsionate rate they charge for credit, apart from that i dont like spending money i dont have.

Got my financies sorted now, will be taking canadien dollar travellers cheques which I got through my own bank here in the uk but got them at a pitiful 2.17 dollars to the pound, I wouldnt mind but before christmas I would have got 2.3 to the pound, ah well. Please, if anyone was going to tell me to get the currency change when i get there please dont, as I will probably be very ill. Thanks for all your help guys and gals and have a great season

peace

Dave G
post #21 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by heinzbeanz
Please, if anyone was going to tell me to get the currency change when i get there please dont, as I will probably be very ill.
Dave G
I think I already did but it seemed to have little effect. Hop into the CIBC or Custom House when you get here and check the rate they would have given you. Steal the barf bag from the plane and take it with, you may need it.
post #22 of 23
Thread Starter 
Thanks. I thought you were just referring to the us dollars I had and not my entire stock of assets. anyway will see you in the week L7


take it easy

Dave G
post #23 of 23
Thread Starter 
P.S. wasnt that thrilled with carrying a large amount of british cash around with me until I got to canada. For the sake of a couple of dollars I thought it would be best to get travellers cheques then at least they are insured, thanks for the advise though, just dont want anything to happen before i get out there, have been looking forward to this for such a long time and thought it was the best thing to do.


Thanks again

Dave G
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