Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 1999/10/06

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Subject: Re: [Leica] Travel Photography Made Easy
From: Chandos Michael Brown <>
Date: Wed, 06 Oct 1999 10:28:45 -0400

Odd, I had quite a different experience the year I lived in the 
Netherlands.  I paid an ordinary non-system transaction fee (USD$1.50), but 
the bank gave me institutional exchange rates on all transactions.  This 
was a couple of points better than I could've gotten from any local exchange.

This was also true when I travelled to England and Belgium.  I take about 
$100 in the destination currency when I leave the States (ATMs *do* go 
down)--buys me a cup of coffee in the airport and pays the taxi/bus/train 
fare when I get there, with enough left to eat, etc, w/o having to sweat 
the exchange right away.


At 09:51 PM 10/6/1999 +0800, you wrote:
>You suggest that there are no fees to pay when you use an ATM to
>withdraw funds when overseas. Let me suggest otherwise: When I withdrew
>some funds when I was in Bangkok recently (I live in Hong Kong and have
>a "no fee for ATM use" credit card issued by a bank in Boston), I was
>charged a "foreign use" fee for simply accessing the ATM of Hong Kong
>Bank in Bangkok. Then I was charged a transaction fee (three bucks or so
>USD) for the actual withdrawal, and then on top of those surprises the
>bank gave me a terrible exchange rate, adding yet another cost to me on
>top of the other two insults. I've lived in Asia for almost six years,
>and I find it almost always better to exchange USD into the country's
>currency at the airport upon arrival in the visiting country. At least
>in Asia. The exception being in Manila, where the hotels are usually
>(miraculously) a better deal.
>Jim Nelon
>William Ferris wrote:
> >
> > What equipment to take is always debatable, but the ATM advice is tops.  I
> > travel a lot, everywhere and never get cash any way other than with an ATM
> > card.  Those machines are everywhere---no lines to stand in, no fees to pay
> > and the best rate you can get.
> >
> > Bill
> > ----- Original Message -----
> > From: Nathan Wajsman <>
> > To: <>
> > Sent: Wednesday, October 06, 1999 12:37 AM
> > Subject: Re: [Leica] Travel Photography Made Easy
> >
> > > Bill,
> > >
> > > This is a fun rule...Actually, you should NEVER exchange money when
> > > travelling. Just bring your good old ATM card and use it to withdraw
> > > cash as you need it.

Chandos Michael Brown
Assoc. Prof., History and American Studies
College of William and Mary