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Coming from UK - Managing cash

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99 posts
30 reviews
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Coming from UK - Managing cash

Hi everyone,

Coming to Costa Rica in November from UK.

We have VISA DEBIT cards, is it worth organising a CREDIT card for our holiday? Would it make life easier?

I know we can pay for things in US dollars, but should we just stick to bringing Colones from UK?

Thank you for your help.


Destination Expert
for Costa Rica
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15,025 posts
60 reviews
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1. Re: Coming from UK - Managing cash

No need to bring colones from UK. Just have your VISA debit card and use it to withdraw colones from ATM's, and to pay at hotels and restaurants and tour operators. Some of the ATM machines can give you also US$, if you will feel to pay in that currency (some of prices of tours are listed in US$ so there is no hassle of calculating the conversion rate if using a currency in which the price is listed). You will need your c/c only if renting a car, for deposit purposes. A debit card can be also used, but in such case money will be taken from your account, and returned back a few days after you will return the car (some says 5-10 working days).

San Jose
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1,000 posts
24 reviews
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2. Re: Coming from UK - Managing cash

I would also think a cc is useful not only for renting a car, but also for deposit at the hotel to open up your account. Remember some hotels will put a hold on your card when you check in and it is a problem if you put in your debit card, same as xelas just explained for the rental car. In my experience, when I worked at a rental car, if you use your debit card for the "hold" it takes more than a month, and sometimes even longer, for the bank to return the money to the card holder. It just depends on the bank, but 5-10 working days is a very optimistic time frame, but it doesnt usually happen. Good luck.

3. Re: Coming from UK - Managing cash

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