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Old 14-08-2016, 19:11   #1
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Currency used while aboard ?

Hello, I am new to the sailing scene and learning as much as possible . I think I made the (mistake) of taking my wife on a surprise 20th anniversary sailing the cheasapeke for 4 nights last month. I AM HOOKED NOW. And planning on at least 1 year sailing after retirement in about 5 years..... One question i had is "how do you pay for things while sailing abroad" ? I am sure you don't keep a wad of cash on you for the whole time out. VISA cards ? lol I have no clue. BE easy on me! I am sure I will have alot more stupid questions to come.

I am planning on chartering another sailboat around march in Virgin Islands to get a better taste of retirement.

Thanks
ToddMc
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Old 14-08-2016, 19:15   #2
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Re: Currency used while aboard ?

When you get to another country you go to a cash machine and get a couple hundred US bucks in local cash. The trick is leaving with as little as possible.
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Old 14-08-2016, 20:06   #3
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Re: Currency used while aboard ?

Small stash of US$... my current stash is less than $100.
Debit card for drawing cash from ATMs.
Credit card for in store purchases.
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Old 14-08-2016, 20:13   #4
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Re: Currency used while aboard ?

Todd, i take it you have not been overseas yet on vacation?

The rest of the world is just like home with blood sucking leaches on every street corner called shops. They all developed a way to extract money from you. Surprisingly enough its exactly the same as home.
They even named it after your Passport: Visa.
Mastercard alone says they are in 36 MILLION shops world wide.
There is more than 3 million ATMs world wide and ready and waiting to spit cash at you.

There are 2 ATMs in Antartica both operated by Wells Fargo at McMurdo. They both have my seal of approval and give you cold hard cash...
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Old 14-08-2016, 20:26   #5
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Re: Currency used while aboard ?

[QUOTE=El Pinguino;2189657]Small stash of US$... my current stash is less than $100.

The $100 bill is the best insurance you can have , you are hanging it out there.
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Old 14-08-2016, 21:07   #6
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Re: Currency used while aboard ?

Be sure to contact your bank to let them know you will be traveling and where or they may shut down your card suspecting phony use. Suggest you have two different cards just in case. My bank was kind enough to shut down my debit card when I went to Bahamas . Lots of wasted time on the phone and a 24 hour delay.
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Old 14-08-2016, 21:09   #7
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Re: Currency used while aboard ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Guy View Post
The trick is leaving with as little as possible.
LOL, I think I still have some foreign coins from my travels as a kid, like 3-4 decades ago.

When sailing, silver & gold coins work, as do emeralds, rubies, diamonds, & other "shiny rocks".
But seriously, in addition to what's already mentioned, there's the option to transfer funds to a bank in another country. Then draw them out in cash, or a card. And if you'll be there for a while, to open an account. Or there are the older methods as well. Even to include Traveler's Checks, etc.

Heck, get with the Mrs. & plan a trip to another land for an upcoming vacation now. Sans boat. Done right it's not crazy expensive. Sometimes less than one at home. And it's usually quite a treat to do. With lots of good, lifelong memories. Not to mention friends.
You might even plan part of the trip with friends. So that initially you have each other for comfort, & then have the option to break off on your own for a bit.
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Old 14-08-2016, 21:26   #8
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Re: Currency used while aboard ?

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But seriously, in addition to what's already mentioned, there's the option to transfer funds to a bank in another country. Then draw them out in cash, or a card. And if you'll be there for a while, to open an account. Or there are the older methods as well. Even to include Traveler's Checks, etc.
I dont think you can open an account in some places, or if its advisable to. For example, St Martin in the Caribbean has some weird laws because its duty free country. All inbound transactions pay a tax in liu of income tax.

Travelers cheques are very expensive and often not accepted afaik.

The ease of use of Visa etc cards really make everything else complicated.

I agree with what pesarsten says, take 2 cards from differing accounts/banks because if theres a weird transaction they stop the card.
I have had trouble in the Caribbean because Australians dont know their geography well and the time zone is 14 hours difference so you buy something at 12 midday in Grenada and in Australia it looks like a 2am ripoff in a war zone....

So keep your bank informed where you are.
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Old 14-08-2016, 23:14   #9
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Re: Currency used while aboard ?

One thing that helps is to call your CC company in advance and advise them of your travel plans, eliminates the whole shutting off the card thing. I would carry at least $1000 in cash, in small bills, stashed in different strategic locations on the boat. I would never carry more than $100 in small bills on my person. Credit cards are the way to go in most instances, and it might sound strange, but I could write a personal check at the hotel I was staying at in Lagos, Nigeria and it was accepted no problem. It is always best to get some local currency for the day to day spending, and most will jump on me for saying so, but I use non traditional markets for my currency exchanges, usually a taxi driver can help you out, or any corner just outside the hotel you are staying, or just as you exit the international airport.
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Old 14-08-2016, 23:59   #10
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Re: Currency used while aboard ?

The folks recommending that you carry a wad of US cash don't know what they're talking about. A $100 bill won't do you any good in most places. There are literally millions of ATM cash machines, one on every block and on front of every bank. Get a chipped bank card without international transaction fees, then use it to buy anything or dining out. Keep a small amount of the local currency for the small stuff.
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Old 15-08-2016, 00:46   #11
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Re: Currency used while aboard ?

I'll try again..... I carry a small amount of US$..... 5s and 20s ... and also a small quantity of $A, $NZ, and $Chilean when I travel.

When I go ashore I never carry a wallet... I only take a credit or debit card ashore if I plan to use it... ie drawing cash or shopping in supermercados or places like Sodomac.
How much Chilean cash I draw depends on where I am going and what I am doing..... some of the ports I call at have no ATMs so fuel and everything else is a cash transaction. In bigger ports cash is still the norm in the markets and smaller shops so I use quite a bit.....

I only take enough cash ashore to cover expected expenditure on the day.

Can't remember when I last used any of my $US....
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Old 15-08-2016, 00:52   #12
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Re: Currency used while aboard ?

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I'll try again..... I carry a small amount of US$..... 5s and 20s ... and also a small quantity of $A, $NZ, and $Chilean when I travel.

When I go ashore I never carry a wallet... I only take a credit or debit card ashore if I plan to use it... ie drawing cash or shopping in supermercados or places like Sodomac.
How much Chilean cash I draw depends on where I am going and what I am doing..... some of the ports I call at have no ATMs so fuel and everything else is a cash transaction. In bigger ports cash is still the norm in the markets and smaller shops so I use quite a bit.....

I only take enough cash ashore to cover expected expenditure on the day.

Can't remember when I last used any of my $US....
We do exactly the same thing. No wallet (no target for pickpockets), small US cash for buying items at the airport on the way home, credit cards for local purchases.
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Old 15-08-2016, 01:13   #13
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Re: Currency used while aboard ?

In the past 4 months we have sailed Turkey, Georgia, Russia, now Ukraine and soon the Romania and Bulgaria with inland travel to Armenia and soon Poland and Moldova. A lot of different currencies and we try to leave each with none but not always possible.

First - we use Bank of America and they have been great. We call them on Skype and set up what we are going to do, where we are going and they monitor it for us. We also have it set up that we can only withdraw a certain amount each day and only a few transactions each day. BOA has been great to us and kept us safe from the financial fraud problems. They cut my card off a couple times in one country when I went over the number of transactions a day due to high cost and low exchange rates. We try to pay a lot of stuff in cash - we calculate how much we need, go to the bank get the money and pay and it sometimes takes 2 days to withdraw the needed funds. We have had our credit card hacked and boy talk about a hassle - think about trying to get a new credit card when you are underway -

The first thing we do when we arrive is find out the exchange rate, check a local menu for the cost of a cup of coffee and simple breakfast then we have an idea of what things may cost. We withdraw some amount and begin to work with it. The only time we ended up with way to much money was in Russia as we did a lot of inland travel and got more than we needed - we did exchange some of it in Ukraine but they would only take the larger bills.

We do keep a small amount of American cash on board but not a lot. We have arrived in a port and needed to pay customs or something similar so we use USD if we have to but usually tell them we need a bank as we have no money and they agree.

the problem is how much are you going to spend so you don't take to much out - if too much that last night can be a great dinner and we have done that a few times.
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Old 15-08-2016, 06:29   #14
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Re: Currency used while aboard ?

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, ToddMc
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Old 15-08-2016, 07:28   #15
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Re: Currency used while aboard ?

Tell your bank where you plan to be (ours has an online section to do it).


Otherwise it's credit cards for larger purchases and local cash from an ATM for smaller stuff. We might have $20 US but we don't try to keep a stash of US or any other countries cash other than what is local.


Travelers checks our largely out of date. You can get them but no one wants them and often you have to take them to a bank to get them cashed.


If we have a major purchase and credit card isn't an option, our credit union does international transfers pretty cheap but check as they have some fairly strict requirements because once the money is transferred it's gone which makes it a pain to do remotely.
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