Results 1 to 5 of 5
  1. #1

    Default Money Question(s)

    This is really to people who travel from abroad to the USA for a lengthy period of time, as I am intending to do.

    How do you go about funding your trip? I am going for 4 months, and changing all of my pounds into dollars for the whole trip doesn't seem the best way, as I'd constantly have a lot of money on my person, and losing it would obviously put an end to my trip.

    What other ways are there? Have people used their English bank cards and just used ATM's? Has this worked out ok, or does the cost at each withdrawal of money make this less than ideal?

    Is it possible to open an account with an American bank despite being from the UK and only being in the USA for a short period of time?

    Any other ideas/previous experiences?

    Many thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default plastic

    When I'm traveling out of the US, I find that using plastic is the easiest way to handle money. Ideally, your bank could issue you a debit card with a Mastercard or Visa logo that you could use at an ATM or at a store like a credit card. If they can't do that, then I'd look into getting a prepaid visa/mastercard, which would work in much the same way (just a bit more expensive). Generally, using plastic will give you the best exchange rate, even when factoring in the extra fees, but you should certainly check with your bank to see how much they charge for each transaction.

    With the Patriot Act, I think you'll find that opening a US bank account is not really going to be possible, and its probably not worth the hassle anyway.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    Here in the States, you can use a Visa or Mastercard credit or debit card to buy just about anything anywhere. If you use a credit card (or have your debit card run as credit), expect to be asked for ID. Our debit card systems are based on a 4 digit PIN. If you make purchases in a large store such as Walmart or most supermarkets with a PIN-based debit card, you can usually get cash back with no fee - up to $100 depending on the store. A straight cash withdrawal from an ATM usually carries a $1.50 to $3 fee from the ATM operator, but you also need to check with your bank to find out what kind of fee they are also going to tack on. Avoid privately-operated ATM's such as you will find in convenience stores and casinos (as they tend to charge excessive fees), try to use ATM's that belong to a real bank.

  4. #4


    The best UK card to use abroad is the Nationwide debit card, as they charge much less than other banks and building societies to convert the currencies. I have a Nationwide account that I only use when I travel, I pay into it before I leave (or use Internet banking to transfer money into it from my main account while I am away).

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    It's also advisable, if possible, to have more than one card in case an ATM somewhere eats your card. It's not common, but it does happen - and you won't be able to get that card back quickly or easily.

Similar Threads

  1. Making Money on a Roll
    By Mark Sedenquist in forum Saving Money on Your Trip
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 11-09-2016, 03:53 AM
  2. Replies: 5
    Last Post: 05-30-2007, 02:29 PM
  3. Lots of questions? Please help! A couple on a small budget!
    By fuzzy1977 in forum Saving Money on Your Trip
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 07-26-2006, 06:31 AM
  4. money money
    By mjstopera in forum Gear-Up!
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 05-12-2006, 09:35 PM
  5. A couple of questions on the grand canyon
    By roadie4 in forum Planning Summer RoadTrips
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 01-03-2006, 10:22 AM


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts