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how & where to exchange money

Raleigh, North...
3 posts
1 review
1 helpful vote
how & where to exchange money

I will be traveling to Sayulita for the 1st week in November.

How much cash (USD) should I bring? And what is the best way to convert additional money (ATM, Bank, credit card?).

Do most places accept pesos or dollars?

thanks for the help! We are very excited about the trip.

Calgary
Destination Expert
for Nuevo Vallarta
Level Contributor
2,045 posts
1. Re: how & where to exchange money

There's some good discussion of this topic at the following links:

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g150793-i46-k33218…

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g150793-i46-k25292…

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g154267-i323-k3313…

It isn't Sayulita-specific, but should be helpful anyway.

Sayulita
Level Contributor
607 posts
2 reviews
2. Re: how & where to exchange money

Although US dollars are readily accepted you will pay for the convenience in terms of the exchange rate that you'll be given. You will receive the best exchange rate by using ATM's to get pesos and use those pesos for all of your spending money. Although rare, ATM fraud has occurred so you should use general precautions when using an ATM, i.e. cover the keypad when entering your pin and be aware of your surroundings. When it is busy in Sayulita it is not uncommon for the ATM's to run out of cash between servicing so plan ahead a bit so that you don't run out of pesos. For convenience sake, upon arrival you may want to use either the ATM in the airport or as you drive north you can use the bank ATM's located beside the MEGA supermarket. Be sure and let your bank know in advance that you'll be traveling to Mexico so that the card won't be rejected due to suspected fraud.

salt lake city
Level Contributor
65 posts
14 reviews
11 helpful votes
3. Re: how & where to exchange money

I strongly agree. ATMs hv the best rates by far. Think at mega I got 2000 pesos & it ended up being $164 us, well worth the $5. If you go to pvr walmart has an exchange rate of 12 pesos to $1 us, better the. 11.81 or so in town (we just got back ystrdy). I saw two cambios in sayulita only one of which was even opened & even then only for a short time 1 day (11.41/1). I exchanged $ once at sayulita espresso for 11/1. Defidently use pesos.

Oakland, California
Level Contributor
7 posts
1 review
4. Re: how & where to exchange money

hi sayulitapita,

thanks for the exchange info. i will be there for christmas thru new years-can't wait. one question.. do the atm machines require a 4 or 5 digit pin code. i experienced this problem in europe once. my pin is 4 digits, europe atms were 5 digit.

Oakland, California
Level Contributor
7 posts
1 review
5. Re: how & where to exchange money

hi sayulitapita,

thanks for the exchange info. i will be there for christmas thru new years-can't wait. one question.. do the atm machines require a 4 or 5 digit pin code. i experienced this problem in europe once. my pin is 4 digits, europe atms were 5 digit.

Vancouver BC
Destination Expert
for Vancouver
Level Contributor
11,411 posts
216 reviews
423 helpful votes
6. Re: how & where to exchange money

My 4 digits work, but works in Europe too...hmmm

Pemberton, Canada
2 posts
7. Re: how & where to exchange money

We just returned from Sayulita and make sure you do NOT bring travellers cheques. Silly me believed this to be a reliable form or currency to bring and exchanger at Cambios. Not! No cash exchange or bank takes them anywhere. I kept asking why and nobody would tell me, just said they wouldn't to it. I finally had to back to the airport to cash the rest of the travellers cheques (to be on the safe side). ATM cards a good bet but large service charge per transaction.

Illinois
Destination Expert
for Bucerias, Riviera Nayarit
Level Contributor
10,554 posts
42 reviews
56 helpful votes
8. Re: how & where to exchange money

I go to Bucerias for months at a time and I just use pesos from ATM's when I'm spending cash. (I only bring about $100 USD with me and that's so I'll have some money when I get back to O'Hare.) Since I get airline mileage points, I try to use my credit card whenever I can, but credit cards are not widely accepted in restaurants and shops. Usually just in the higher-end places.

Since the U.S. Dollar is the currency of the drug trade, Mexican banks are making a strong effort to get out of the money-laundering business. (I find it hard to believe that drug lords or dealers would bother to buy American traveler's checks, but that's what the banks are doing, at least right now.)

You can minimize the bank charges at the ATM by always taking out the maximum amount of pesos that you can. No matter how much you withdraw, the bank charge will be the same.

For those who will be on extended trips in Mexico, check with your bank at home to see if they have an agreement with any banks in Mexico. If they do, your ATM transactions will be free. (My ATM card is with the Bank of America and I get free transactions at Scotiabank and Santander ATM's. HSBC has machines in Mexico, too.)

Sayulita
Level Contributor
607 posts
2 reviews
9. Re: how & where to exchange money

I've only seen 4 digit pin codes used in Mexico. Regarding ATM fees, there are several privately owned ATM's in Sayulita which have have higher fees than the bank operated ATM's. The bank machine I regularly use charges 29 pesos for the service fee (approx. $2.50)

Oakland, California
Level Contributor
7 posts
1 review
10. Re: how & where to exchange money

thanks for the exchange info. is there a way to tell which atms are bank owned verses private owned?