There Are Many Hidden Fees You’ll Encounter While Traveling–Here’s How You Can Dodge Them
People often spend months, even years, to save up for a well-deserved trip abroad. But despite careful planning and budgeting, they are surprised to land in their destination and find that they forgot to account for certain expenses.
This mistake can end up derailing a traveler’s budget with them ending up spending more money than they’ve anticipated. Here are some useful and money-saving spending tips all travelers should keep in mind when enjoying their vacation.
Avoiding Foreign Exchange Fees
It’s no secret that using one’s local debit or credit card abroad comes with certain fees. It typically ranges around 3% of the amount a person withdraws or the purchase price of the item they’re buying. And there are even more when one chooses to swipe their debit card.
There’s the fee their bank charges for using an ATM abroad, a fee from the foreign bank’s ATM, and the currency exchange fee. Luckily, there are now cards that don’t charge its users this fee and people planning to go to another country might want to sign up for one before their flight. Travel blogger Jackie Sills-Dellegrazie who writes ‘The Globetrotting Teacher’ does and makes it a staple in her wallet.
Sticking with Credit Cards
Another money-saving tip is to pay using a credit card as much as possible. Going this route would still be better than the alternative of converting one’s pocket money even if one’s card doesn’t waive fees. Foreign merchants typically accept MasterCard, Visa, and American Express.
Paying with the Local Currency
When paying with a card, a traveler might still get the choice whether they want to pay in the local currency or in United States dollars. People are recommended to go with the former. According to travel experts, using dollars might be more costly as it’s a way banks can make more off of their clients.
ATMs Over Airport Currency Exchange
It might seem convenient for travelers to have their pocket money exchanged at the airport when they arrive at their destination. Frequent travelers discourage doing this, though. Currency exchange providers at the arrivals area tend to charge up to a 15% premium just to convert a customer’s money.
In the end, going to a nearby ATM would be a better choice– all fees considered. Just make sure to avoid ATMs with a low limit for withdrawals. Choose one that’ll allow a withdrawal large enough to let users get the exact amount they need to avoid multiple transactions and fees.
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