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Old 24-06-2016, 15:44   #31
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Re: Curious Idiot question #3 How do you pay for that?

4 years ago dropped anchor at a picturesque village in north of Scotland. Had the price of a pint in my pocket so went to the pub. Couldn't pay for anything with card. Tried the village shop...Nope. Nearest bank 17 miles away..Not handy cos no wheels on yacht. Mobile Bank calls once a week - and it had been that day! Always have a reserve of cash now!
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Old 24-06-2016, 18:06   #32
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Re: Curious Idiot question #3 How do you pay for that?

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Travelers checks are way out of date.

The misses organizes group tours. It's rare but she has had the occasional person bring travelers checks. No one wants to touch them. We've had to loan a couple people cash until they got home because they brought travelers checks and no ATM card.

Not saying you can't find someone who will take them, just that no one wants to mess with them.
Our experience too! We had been carrying "emergency" traveler's checks for years. Decided that it was silly, so started trying to cash them and had a hell of a time finding anyone who even knew what they were... and this was in urban Australia. Finally got it done, but it was a pain (and a big surprise!).

We were last in the Solomons in 1998, and at that time there were no ATMs around, and banks only in Gizo and Honiara. We actually ran out of cash before we had reached Honiara and were unable to make any purchases... not tht there were too many opportunities! Not surprised to hear that things have changed!

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Old 24-06-2016, 19:45   #33
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Re: Curious Idiot question #3 How do you pay for that?

Once you get beyond the gilded gates of the tourist resorts and out into the local economy, you'll find that cash is king. At little markets and produce stalls the world over, they no takey plastic.
In The Bahamas f'rinstance, ATMs and stores that accept credit are in the major centres, but in the out-islands not so much. Even in Nassau - we were there a little over a month before the Baha Mar resort was scheduled to open; one day they flipped the switch on and blew all the island's generators. No power at all for about 3 days. A lot of stores and banks had their own generators, but no-one came in on the weekend to reset the systems, so no money from the ATMs. The network was down, and everywhere we went, it was "cash only."
So probably depends on how far off the beaten path you intend to travel, but IME our little stash of cash came in mighty handy a couple of times.
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Old 24-06-2016, 19:55   #34
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Re: Curious Idiot question #3 How do you pay for that?

Oh, got another cautionary anecdote - just before we crossed to The Bahamas, we did a little shopping trip to stock up on essentials. Went to the usual places, including Target. At the till, credit card was declined. No problem - as a frequent traveller to the US, I was fairly accustomed to occasional hiccups with Canadian plastic, so I pulled out an alternate card and paid with that. Later on while in Freeport, catch the news that Target has been hacked and millions of people have had their credit card info stolen. Predictably, both cards were cancelled by the banks, and replacements mailed to my home, in Canada. I'm sure I could have arranged to have replacements sent to the Bahamas, but I heard horror stories of both the post office and UPS, FedEx etal in Freeport. So if you go plastic, make sure you have a backup and a backup for the backup.
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Old 24-06-2016, 20:34   #35
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Re: Curious Idiot question #3 How do you pay for that?

A few years back I surveyed a 30yr old Formosa 41 that had at one time circumnavigated. I found $5,000 in old style (Canadian) $100 bills wrapped in saran wrap and glassed on to the hull interior in an almost inaccessible location.
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Old 24-06-2016, 20:35   #36
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Re: Curious Idiot question #3 How do you pay for that?

No matter how remote you are going, there will always by ATMs at the port of entry. The best thing to do is estimate how much local cash you will need for everyday expenses and draw enough from an ATM at the start.
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Old 24-06-2016, 22:01   #37
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Re: Curious Idiot question #3 How do you pay for that?

even rural mexico has banamex atms.
there is no way for non mexicans to cash checks.
most banks only send their cards to the address of record for the account. they willnot send to where you say you are. how do they know it is you. i have been thru this 5 times now in the 6 yrs i have been out of country. it is difficult to receive your needed card in under 2 weeks.
i make sure i have 2 weeks local money on hand.
most of you will be only part time, returning after x number months, so the logistics are not so punishing. those of us out here full time find ways to prevent hardship
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Old 25-06-2016, 05:00   #38
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Re: Curious Idiot question #3 How do you pay for that?

There are ATM's almost everywhere now. Yes, even the Solomon Islands, Honiara, gizo, Munda. The only place I can remember that didn't have an ATM in the last few years was Funifuti in Tuvalu. And even there it was easy to get a cash advance at the bank. Get a VISA debit card and a separate VISA credit card and a couple of thousand dollars in crisp new hundred-dollar notes and you will be covered where ever you go. Just be sure to tell your bank you will be traveling. You don't want your card cutoff when you need it most and then when you finally get through to your bank security guys, to have them ask, "did you know someone is trying to use your card in Tahiti?"
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Old 25-06-2016, 16:18   #39
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Re: Curious Idiot question #3 How do you pay for that?

How many U.S. dollars are recommended to keep in that deep dark hole?
How many U.S. dollars are recommended to keep readily accessible in a drawer?
The Solomon Islands were just an example of an out of the way place.
I bank with a local credit union. I don't know if Im comfortable using an ATM all over the world. Also don't know if small credit union is the way to go. Im thinking a big global bank. other than Schwab and Capital one, any other big bank recommendations?
Someone mentioned EVERY port of entry has an ATM. How much in foreign currency is recommended for day to day living?
Is there a way to easily convert the country you are in excess currency to currency where you are planning to go next? Or does this just depend on where you are at any given moment?
Whats the best way to go about bribing a local official? Offer to tip them for helping you out a bit because you haven't done everything properly before hand? Or just be blunt and ask them "how much?"
Thanks for all the responses. I am enjoying asking these questions and learning a lot.
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Old 25-06-2016, 17:46   #40
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Re: Curious Idiot question #3 How do you pay for that?

There is no right generic answer for the amount of cash to stash. This all depends on you. We stashed what I call a "light month". This is what we burn in a month of exceedingly simple living. It's enough for an immediate catastrophe (of limited proportions) or an extended period of time waiting for other options.

What is your risk tolerance? How much do you need to feel comfortable knowing you may not have access to cash for some time?

We used Fidelity for our no fee cash account.


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Old 25-06-2016, 18:02   #41
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Re: Curious Idiot question #3 How do you pay for that?

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No matter how remote you are going, there will always by ATMs at the port of entry. The best thing to do is estimate how much local cash you will need for everyday expenses and draw enough from an ATM at the start.
Now THAT'S optimism.
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Old 25-06-2016, 18:08   #42
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Re: Curious Idiot question #3 How do you pay for that?

What Sailmonkey said.

I'll add that cruising guides, noonsite, CIA factbook, perhaps advice from your country's foreign affairs dept, etc. often discuss the vagaries of your destination's currency. Do you have a prospective or likely first stop in mind for your cruising plans? It might make it easier for peeps to chime in with specifics, that would give you the best example.
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Old 25-06-2016, 19:28   #43
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Re: Curious Idiot question #3 How do you pay for that?

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Now THAT'S optimism.
It's worked out OK for me in many remote locations in different countries over many years.
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Old 25-06-2016, 19:29   #44
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Re: Curious Idiot question #3 How do you pay for that?

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What Sailmonkey said.

I'll add that cruising guides, noonsite, CIA factbook, perhaps advice from your country's foreign affairs dept, etc. often discuss the vagaries of your destination's currency. Do you have a prospective or likely first stop in mind for your cruising plans? It might make it easier for peeps to chime in with specifics, that would give you the best example.
No, I have no first destination. My purpose on this forum is research. I am in the first stages of learning. Thanx for your input.
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Old 25-06-2016, 20:19   #45
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Re: Curious Idiot question #3 How do you pay for that?

OK, but I only used USD as we were cruising the US and The Bahamas, where the Bahamian dollar is fixed to the USD - both can be used interchangeably in The Bahamas, but the Bahamian dollar is useless outside of The Bahamas. If you're cruising Europe or the Med a stash of Euros would make more sense. Travelling the Caribbean, it might make sense to have a mix - while some countries have their own money, many use USD, several use the Euro and several others have the East Caribbean dollar.
In some countries it is illegal to use any foreign currency - now what's legal and what actually occurs may differ, but regardless you might not want to withdraw a large amount of Scooterbucks, in the event you can't exchange it back and wind up with a lot of very expensive Monopoly money.
Stu is in Papau New Guinea - two countries on one island; this stands in stark contrast to The Bahamas where there are 700 islands in one country. And I would bet my stash, that no more than 10 of those have ATMs on them. You can get a cruising permit for a year, and could easily spend that year exploring every isolated cay. So what works in one area of the world may not be realistic everywhere, and much of it depends on how and where you plan to cruise.
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