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Change money in England or Cape Town

In cooperation with: Cape Town Tourism
England
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169 posts
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Change money in England or Cape Town

We are going to sa in December do we change our money before we go, use ATM while we are there or take English and change in the banks, we are going for two weeks

Gros Morne National...
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for Newfoundland and Labrador
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1. Re: Change money in England or Cape Town

Walk up to the nearest ATM.

London, United...
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2. Re: Change money in England or Cape Town

Whenever and wherever we travel we always purchase local currency before we leave. However, we normally don't carry large amounts of cash with us and are quite happy to use our credit cards for the same type of purchases that we might make at home. However, whenever we use our credit cards we always pay in the local currency. We never pay in GBPs. There are too many hidden costs if you pay in GBPs. We also pay the bill from the credit card company when it is due so that we pay no interest

Washington DC...
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3. Re: Change money in England or Cape Town

Use your bank card at an ATM upon arrival at airport and then bank ATMs as needed. Call your bank ahead of leaving so they won't block card suspecting fraudulent use.

Sydney, Australia
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4. Re: Change money in England or Cape Town

We get some rand notes in the smallest amounts we can get before we leave. We take a credit card but reduce the limit before we go in case it is lost/stolen and advise our bank of our intended $ transactions approximately. We use our debit cards at the ATMS there we have a set limit available for draw down on the cards. We use the ATMS inside the banks in cities but not when we are out in the countryside.

Johannesburg, South...
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for Johannesburg
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5. Re: Change money in England or Cape Town

Use the ATMs you get the best rate of exchange rate.

Do not accept help from strangers at the ATM's, even if they are well spoken and well dressed.( true for anywhere in the world)

Birmingham, United...
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6. Re: Change money in England or Cape Town

beware of your banks charges can get expensive look at using a travel money currency card travelex are the only ones that do a rand card then use the same as your debit/credit card wih no hidden charges

London, United...
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7. Re: Change money in England or Cape Town

I've looked into this and I've set up a Metro Bank account to avoid the standard bank charges. Easy to get a current account and credit card too.

Cape Town
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8. Re: Change money in England or Cape Town

Hi Zippy

Absolutely agree. As I have posted on this forum several times - most recently a couple of days ago - coming from the UK and using a Metro Bank debit card is definitely the best way to change money. Mastercard do the foreign exchange and charge 0.5 percent against the full Interbank rate - as quoted minute by minute. Metrobank are billed in Sterling and don't add a penny more in charges.

Just to point out to Rebecca that Travelex certainly do have "hidden charges"! They come from the fact that as the card is denominated in Rand, it is not Mastercard (or Visa) that do the foreign exchange (charging you 0.5percent) it is Travelex. When you load your card by changing Pounds into Rand they charge you a minimum additional 2.75 percent against the Interbank rate. A very nice additional profit for them of 2.75 percent of all your overseas spending!

Living here in Cape Town but with the majority of my income and capital in the UK, Metro Bank saves me a lot of money. As an example of how much can be saved, I bought a R475,000 car using my Metro Bank Debit Card a few months ago. Transferred UK funds into my Metro Bank current account and checked on-line they were cleared. Phoned my branch in London and requested that they allow a single one-off purchase of R475,000. Metro Bank provide personal branch service so they requested that I phone them from the Car Dealers just before the transaction went through. No problems whatsoever when the merchant swiped the card and then my normal transaction safety limit was reinstated immediately after.

This saved me over £700 on the price of the car compared to a transaction for which the institution took 2.75% hidden profit!

I am sure I could have used the same process to buy a house - and will probably try it next time I do!

Edited: 17 November 2013, 22:14
Brisbane, Australia
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9. Re: Change money in England or Cape Town

Just to save yourself the hassle of finding an ATM in the airport (don't know what this is like in CPT, but know its a little painful in JNB) get R1000 before you leave, this should allow you to cover any incidentals before you get to your hotel.

England
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10. Re: Change money in England or Cape Town

Many thanks for all the advice much appreciated