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Changing cash...

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Manchester
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31 posts
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Changing cash...

Would l be wiser to change my money in England or would l get the same rate in NIce and if so where is the best place to change it ?

My bank charges for every transaction so was going to change £1000 before leaving, l am guessing that will be plenty for 6 nights / 7 days.

Norfolk, United...
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1. Re: Changing cash...

I would change it at ATMs when you arrive.

Check your holiday insurance - there is going to be a limit as to how much cash is covered, and it tends to be pretty low - almost definitely considerably lower than £1,000.

Hong Kong, China
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for Hong Kong, Osaka
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2. Re: Changing cash...

Get money from the ATM's but understand any transaction charges you might have to pay. For the foreign withdrawal limit, you can also check with your bank.

London, United...
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for Nice, Villefranche-sur-Mer
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3. Re: Changing cash...

Whilst ATMs in Nice are as our posters suggest the best source, it would be prudent to change a small amount, perhaps £100, into Euro before you leave. With some euro on you, you are covered against all eventualities ( taxis, snacks, anything that comes along) until you can hit the cash machines at a convenient time.

Marks and Spencer offer a pretty competitive rate, anywhere but the airport, who offer the worst. Ask for as many small bills as possible - fives and tens, as ATMs generally offer only twenties and you will not have to find out what happens when you offer a bus driver a twenty euro note for a one euro fare.

For the rest of your cash, any of the main French banks, pop in your debit card (not credit card unless you want to incur more charges than necessary). Its sensible to choose an ATM in a fairly secure setting (not middle of the night) and preferrably just after someone else has completed a successful transaction, so you know the machine is functioning properly, as ATM scams do happen, as anywhere nowadays, and you don't want to lose that precious card.

The basic exchange rate is rubbish compared with some years ago, the euro is much stronger than it deserves to be, so its best not to think about it and concentrate on enjoying your stay.

This will give you a good idea what rates you can expect

www.x-rates.com/d/EUR/GBP/graph120.html

Edited: 08 March 2011, 09:01
Sydney, Australia
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25,104 posts
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4. Re: Changing cash...

While ATMs seem to offer the bast rate and convenience, from reading other posts, the PO in UK is very competitive, usually about the same fees as an ATM, so that might be a good place to get your starter dose of cash.Then use ATMs.

Your bank usually does impose an overseas transaction fee (usually about 2.5 to 3%) plus a small ATM fee (about 1-2 gbp). None of those fees are from the French bank.

London, UK
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7,040 posts
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5. Re: Changing cash...

Check with your bank on whether they impose the foreign transaction fee if you are getting Euros from some other organisations and using a debit card even in UK. The Post Office warned me that some do recently.

Manchester
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31 posts
3 reviews
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6. Re: Changing cash...

I intend to use the PO in England as the last time l used ATM's abroad l got a very poor exchange rate and a charge every time l used it.

It actually ended up a very bad decision financially.

Norfolk, United...
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282 posts
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7. Re: Changing cash...

<I intend to use the PO in England as the last time l used ATM's abroad l got a very poor exchange rate and a charge every time l used it.

It actually ended up a very bad decision financially.>...

...not as bad a financial decision as losing £1,000 worth of euros and only being insured for £200 or so...

London, United...
Destination Expert
for Nice, Villefranche-sur-Mer
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8. Re: Changing cash...

You've had advice, you change wherever you feel comfortable, no problem.

I'd just add a different cautionary note. I had the misfortune to be pickpocketed on a crowded bus to Nice. With Europes open borders, you can't assume everyone around you is a friendly local. The Riviera is a target for professional thieves from around the world for the obvious reasons: no future in being a thief in a poor country.

Never mind the exchange rate, just make sure you have a secure money-belt system to carry your cash.

Nice
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9. Re: Changing cash...

i advised my FIL to use the atms as needed - he brought a wad of cash to avoid transaction fees , put it in his back pocket and very nearly lost it all to a pickpocket.

If i hadn't been with him and spotted the pickpockets , it would have wasted his holiday

Edited: 08 March 2011, 21:17
Manchester
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31 posts
3 reviews
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10. Re: Changing cash...

Thank you for the warnings of pick pockets, l shall be on my gaurd about this now.

Having never used the public transport in Nice l wasnt aware of the problem.

I will discuss it with my wife now and see if we need to re think the situation...