Post # 1
Hi everyone! We will be honeymooning in Portugal at the end of June/beginning of July. I’m trying to figure out the best way to handle coverting currency. Does anyone here have any good advice? I’m guessing we will need between $2000 and $3000 USD for food/transportation/activities/extras. Obviously I don’t want to be walking around with that kind of cash. My plan for now is to wait a couple months (pretty sure the euro is not on its way up) then find a good exchange rate here in the US at a bank. We can take a portion of our money that way, and use our debit cards as credit there.
I’m curious to hear what others have done. If you have done something similar, what portion of your budget did you take as cash with you? When I have traveled internationally in the past I have brought travellers’ checks and exchanged dollars at the airport, where I know the rates are crazy high.
Any tips would be greatly appreciated!
Post # 3
Are you a triple A member? If you are you can go to them and get $100 worth of euros, they charge the conversion rate plus a small premium but it’s enough for your first few hours. Also, they offer a prepaid debit/credit card that works internationally at ATMs. I used it on three separate trips to Europe and it worked just fine in France, Italy and Austria – no problems anywhere. They charge a nominal fee for it. I notified my regular bank that I would be traveling internationally before I went but my regular bank debit card would not work there, anywhere. I also notified my credit card company and it worked fine, they do the conversion for you. Make sure that your cell phone is global or it may not work in Europe. Call your cell carrier before you go, Verizon sent me a global loaner for the trip for a small fee. While your at triple A you can also pick up a plug adaptor so that your electronics will be compatible, they are difficult to find in Europe and don’t use a hair dryer with it, it will fry the adaptor. That’s how I learned its hard to find us adaptors in Europe – lol! Have a wonderful time!
Post # 4
I’ve taken the same approach for my international trips. I tried to use my no-fee capital one card as much as possible and got a small amount of cash to use when credit cards weren’t accepted. When deciding how much cash to get, keep in mind that if you are traveling to remote areas or small towns you may need more cash because credit cards may be less commonly accepted.