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Falling rand..;where to buy

Luxembourg City...
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Falling rand..;where to buy

I'm travelling to South Africa this weekend (coming from Europe) It seems the Rand is continuously declining (today 1 euro = +/- 15 Rand) which will make my holidays a bit cheaper :)

I wondered where to purchase Rands to have the best deal. Possible options I see:

1) Purchase Rand's at my local bank here in Luxembourg before departure ?

2) Take Euro in cash and exchange it in a South African bank when I arrive ?

3) Take Euro in cash and exchange it on the street in Cape Town ?

4) pay everything with credit card

5) ....

What are your recommendations ?

Leeds, United...
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for Western Cape, Cape Town Central
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1. Re: Falling rand..;where to buy


I have just checked and the Rand is still pretty weak against the euro and sterling. This is an excellent rate and is above where it was 2 weeks ago, when I decided to buy some currency

It is always a guessing game when buying currency and so you will always take a chance in a more volatile market

If you have a cc with no or very low foreign charges, this will give you the bet rates, unless of course the rand strengthens significantly during your holiday. In the UK the best currency deals are online and Travelex was one of the best, where you pre order and pay on line and then pick up at the airport.

Port Elizabeth
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for South Africa
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2. Re: Falling rand..;where to buy

Definitely not Option 3, Probably not option 2 either

Johannesburg, South...
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for Johannesburg
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3. Re: Falling rand..;where to buy

Inform your credit card company/ bank that you will be using the card in South Africa.

For your cash requirements, draw ZAR directly, from any of the 1000's of ATM's, found all over South Africa.... shopping malls service (petrol stations), and elsewhere. This will give you the best rate.

You get the exact number of Rands you want, and your account will be charged for the transaction at home.

Otherwise, use your card for as many payments as you can.

Avoid carrying large amounts of cash.

When you exchange foreign currency for ZAR, at a bank, or a Bureau De Change, you will be charged:

1. Commission.

2 Service Fee.

3 VAT.

Therefore, you will not get anything like the official exchange rate.

DO NOT exchange money "on the street"... besides being illegal, you will get the very WORST exchange rate!

South Africa
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4. Re: Falling rand..;where to buy

Just go to a ATM and get there your Rands, this is the most best options always.

But just let your bank know that you will using your debet and credit card for SA, so they donot block them!!

Edited: 30 January 2014, 10:08
Berkhamsted, United...
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5. Re: Falling rand..;where to buy

Cash advances on a credit card usually carry an extra charge.

A debit card is better; just stick it in the ATM like you would at home.

South Africa
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6. Re: Falling rand..;where to buy

And you can use a visa or master credit card almost everywere too to pay!

Edited: 30 January 2014, 10:09
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7. Re: Falling rand..;where to buy

For cash use an ATM / debit card. The maximum withdrawal is ZAR3,000.

For all purchases use a credit card.

Exchanging cash is time consuming and incurs extra fees so the rate you see in the window is not the rate you end up with.

Calgary, Canada
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8. Re: Falling rand..;where to buy

I agree, on my visit there year before last, I had no problem paying with my credit card (AMEX) at all locations including grocery stores and gas stations...the places you need cash for is when you are at a tourist destination and they sell items in a curious market...and like stated already, carrying large amounts of cash with you is not a good idea and keep an eye on your credit card whenever you hand it over to somebody!

New York City, New...
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9. Re: Falling rand..;where to buy

a follow up question, if you don't mind. Our credit cards here in the US do not have a microchip. We have 4 number pins. When I was in finland, I had a hard time getting my no-microchip card to to work. When I was in china they used 6 digits!. Can anyone clarify the kind of credit cards and the number of pin numbers there are in SA? Thanks!

Cape Town
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10. Re: Falling rand..;where to buy


Although all SA cards have used chip & pin for some time, all terminals in use here accept both C&P and magnetic stripe cards. Both 4 and 5 digit pins are also acceptable - not sure about 6 digit ones. All this is true for both POS terminals and ATMs.

All waitstaff, petrol station attendants, supermarket checkout staff etc know the difference between cards - and know when to push in the chip slot and when to swipe!!