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Best way to carry money in NZ

Level Contributor
64 posts
6 reviews
Best way to carry money in NZ

Hello people, whats is the best way to carry money around in New Zealand? Am travelling for 3 weeks in NZ, not comfortable carrying money in cash. Credit cards are expensive considering currency conversion fees. Can I look at option of prepaid travel card? Do most of places in New Zealand countryside accept travel cards?

Thanks a lot for your time.

17 replies to this topic
Christchurch, New...
Destination Expert
for Zhuhai, Christchurch, South Island
Level Contributor
39,647 posts
443 reviews
1. Re: Best way to carry money in NZ

Credit cards are definitely the best way to go. You will NEED a CC to rent a car. Find one that doesn't have high fees and accept that every method of currency exchange incurs some cost - often if they say "fees free" the exchange rate is cr&&p to make up their profit!!

You will need a small amount of cash for farmers' markets, roadside fruit stalls & the odd ice-cream stand etc.

Level Contributor
64 posts
6 reviews
2. Re: Best way to carry money in NZ

Thank you @zhuhai2007. I will keep this in mind and probably carry money in cash and CC .. :)

Queenstown, New...
Level Contributor
4,445 posts
58 reviews
3. Re: Best way to carry money in NZ

As suggested, credit card is one of the best options, and most find that the cc fees and exchange rates can be the least costly.

Many people happily use preloaded travel cards, personally I've found CC and ATM card to be most economical for me in the long run.

Destination Expert
for Croatia
Level Contributor
17,580 posts
170 reviews
4. Re: Best way to carry money in NZ

It might be different for you, but I used a cash card on our trip to USA and Canada couple years ago. That was a costly mistake and I tore it up as soon as I got home.

Credit card as suggested is least costly option IMO. Check with your bank for any charges for withdrawals and use overseas.

Edited: 18 February 2017, 19:48
Bombala, New South...
Level Contributor
1,011 posts
26 reviews
5. Re: Best way to carry money in NZ

Shop around for a decent credit card. I know which ones in Australia but not elseswhere. Even a bad credit card would probably be better than a good travel card.

Christchurch, New...
Destination Expert
for South Island
Level Contributor
9,527 posts
220 reviews
6. Re: Best way to carry money in NZ

Kiwi use cc rather than cash. most traders accept Visa and Masta Card. Some banks are in an alliance where you can use other banks ATM without withdrawal fees. There are ATM's on most corners in cities.

Vero Beach, Florida
Destination Expert
for Vero Beach
Level Contributor
9,343 posts
179 reviews
7. Re: Best way to carry money in NZ

Best wishes with currency conversion fees. Even in the United States, many credit cards have currency fees, others don't. Try Visa.

Level Contributor
3 posts
28 reviews
8. Re: Best way to carry money in NZ

Hello, did you use mostly cash and credit card? I am travelling to NZ (South Island) later this month and so far think pre-paid forex card might be the best option. It is supposedly accepted wherever credit cards are accepted and without the extra mark-up. The conversion rates seem to be good with bookmyforex.com.

Did you have any problems with shops/ restaurants/ car rentals etc. taking cards? My accommodation is already paid for.

New Delhi, India
8 posts
1 review
9. Re: Best way to carry money in NZ

Hi , did you finally use the pre-paid forex card ? I am headed out next month to NZ and had a similar query as being discussed on this thread.


Chester, United...
Level Contributor
3,526 posts
183 reviews
10. Re: Best way to carry money in NZ

Hope I don't sound too daft, but is contactless use of credit cards widespread in NZ for small purchases?

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