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Euro Travellers Cheques

Belfast, United...
Level Contributor
12 posts
3 reviews
Euro Travellers Cheques

Heading to Rhodes next week and wondering if it is better to take Euro Travellers Cheques, Sterling Travellers Cheques or does it matter? Just wondering what the Euro exchange rate would be.

Gerry

birmingham
Level Contributor
55 posts
4 reviews
1. Re: Euro Travellers Cheques

I'm just going to reserve £1000 euros with Travelex and £800 on a pre paid Travelex Card - no withdrawal fees at ATMs. Also have a Post Office Credit Card and this is 0% and no fees on anything I put on the card whilst abroad.

Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Train Travel
Level Contributor
97,538 posts
17 reviews
2. Re: Euro Travellers Cheques

Take a debit card and get money out of ATMs. The exchange rate will be better, and you will not have to look for somewhere that might cash a cheque.

Edinburgh, United...
Level Contributor
93 posts
4 reviews
3. Re: Euro Travellers Cheques

I keep seeing this recomendation to just use debit cards, but I think anyone considering doing this really needs to be very cautious about what it's going to cost them. Yes, the exchange rate may (emphasis on "may") be better, but with the additional withdrawal charges on top you're more likely to end up losing out.

I am of course speaking from the perspective of someone in the UK, using a UK registered debit card, and therefore at the mercy of ripoff-merchant UK banks.

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
25,995 posts
61 reviews
4. Re: Euro Travellers Cheques

Do not use Travellers Cheques. It is very hard to cash them and there is usually a fee to do so.

And Greece uses Euros so money should be in Euros.

There is no charge from the Greek bank to use an ATM but there may be charges from your own bank.

Most banks charge a 2% to 3% Overseas Transaction fee for using a CC to buy things or an ATM for withdrawal, and an additional E2 or so per ATM transaction. Find out what your own bank charges and what the PO charges for travel money.

The bank money rate varies from day to day but you can always check it using www.xe.com and then see what your travel card is charging.

Today 100pounds sterling buys 111.375 Euro

The rate offered by the PO card is 108.12 so you can see you are paying about 3% to buy the euros plus a E2 fee to withdraw money.

These are the fees for the PO card

…postoffice.co.uk/travel/…fees-and-limits

In short,the travel money card from your PO it is about equivalent to using your debit card in an ATM. So do your sums.

And maybe you can find a bank that is fee free for overseas transactions, as we have for several accounts here in Australia.

Belfast, United...
Level Contributor
12 posts
3 reviews
5. Re: Euro Travellers Cheques

Thank you all for your comments. It has been 11 years since I have been to Lindos so I am not even sure if it has an ATM (small village). Also my bank will charge me for using my card abroad. I think Travellers Cheques are my cheapest and safest option but hope I will be able to change in the village. I just hope with the Greek economy being the way it is that I get a good exchange rate for sterling cheques.

Applecross, United...
Level Contributor
3,136 posts
1 review
6. Re: Euro Travellers Cheques

There are 2 ATM's in Lindos - one next to the donkey station and one just round the corner opposite the church.

Personally I always take Euro notes to Greece and keep a debit and credit card in case of emergencies. Someone recently changed 300E at one of the Lindos cash machines and was charged over £9 for the privilege ! (HBOS)

PS Incidentally, Lindos is the only place in Greece to have a bank located above a donkey station. Isn't that an interesting fact ?

Edited: 30 June 2011, 04:23
Athens, Greece
Destination Expert
for Peloponnese, Athens
Level Contributor
12,253 posts
80 reviews
7. Re: Euro Travellers Cheques

>>>Someone recently changed 300E at one of the Lindos cash machines and was charged over £9 for the privilege ! (HBOS)<<<

Not quite as painful as it first sounds, the rate they would have got would be higher than any cash rate offered on the same day & definitely better than TCs.

Debit card is the way to go, BUT only if you have one with reasonable charges, that's the hard part!

Even though Nationwide now charge it can still work out cheaper, you get the commercial rate, not the tourist rate (for cash & TCs), 2% charge, plus a quid withdrawal fee. As that withdrawal fee is the same however much you take out it is better to take large amounts rather than lots of small ones.

Example taken on the same day:

Post office cash exchange rate, 1.07

Post office TCs , 1.07 & 1.5% commission

Thomas Cook cash, 1.08

ATM rate for card withdrawals, 1.115

So, do your homework for the charges on whatever card you have. The cash rates quoted aren't going to vary a huge amount whether you get them in the UK or Greece. Some will sound low, but no commission charged, some sound a good deal, but commission taken. What it boils down to is the basic exchange rate (commercial) is the same worldwide, what you end up with when exchanging cash depends on how much the exchange bureau/bank/shop etc want to make out of the deal.

Edited: 30 June 2011, 05:03
Athens, Greece
Destination Expert
for Peloponnese, Athens
Level Contributor
12,253 posts
80 reviews
8. Re: Euro Travellers Cheques

To save you the calculations,

300 @ 1.07 costs you 280.37 pounds (PO cash)

300 @ 1.07+1.5% commission costs you 284.58 (PO TCs)

300 @ 1.08 costs you 277.78 (Thomas Cook cash)

300 @ 1.115 +2%+1 w/d fee costs you 275.44 (NW card)

Of course, the one thing you can't be in control of, or forecast, is how the rate will get better or worse during your holiday! The basic exchange (trading/commercial) changes by the second, whereas the cash places set a rate for the day based on the previous days behaviour.

Buckinghamshire
Level Contributor
1,388 posts
16 reviews
9. Re: Euro Travellers Cheques

Thanks for your great informative posts as ever Yaissas. Please will you be my personal banker,lol.

Athens, Greece
Destination Expert
for Peloponnese, Athens
Level Contributor
12,253 posts
80 reviews
10. Re: Euro Travellers Cheques

International payments used to be part of my job, so I do have some knowledge to work with :))

More to the point, now I am living here I have to know the best way to get funds (apart from large bank tfrs, which are irrelevant to holidays) on a daily basis, for myself & anyone coming to visit.

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