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Prepaid Cash Card New Zealand

chriswilson7

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  • Added on: January 8th, 2011
Hi everyone,

This is my first proper post other than the one in the welcome area, so hi guys :). I'm travelling to New Zealand (from the UK) for the whole of June this year, which is the trip of my lifetime and I'm counting down the months! I'm looking into currency right now and am thinking of getting a prepaid travel money card to use over there for the convenience and security, and wondered what you guys think of the Travelex Cash Passport? Looks like there's no loading/ATM/purchase fees etc. in NZ, and I'm going to use it within the next 12 months so I won't incur the non-use charges. So is it a good option?

Thanks,

Chris

chriswilson7

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  • Added on: January 18th, 2011
Anyone? I'm just generally looking for the best option for carrying money in NZ so I'd really appreciate your advice. Thanks.

larizzle

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  • Added on: January 18th, 2011
Welcome to B&A!
I haven't heard of that, but it sounds like a good deal. Conventionally speaking, finding ATMs to withdraw money from is no problem. I carry a Charles Schwab card when I travel; they refund any exchange rate conversion fees, and that worked fine. Enjoy the trip, NZ is an amazing country, although it's a bit chilly in June! 8-)

Zuleika

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  • Added on: January 24th, 2011
It is definitely an option worth thinking about.
However read the small print as they are rarely free, often you get charged for topping it up and/or other hidden fees.

You could also take debit and credit cards as back up.
I tend to just my debit card for abroad as its easy and accepted everywhere. Take a credit card for if you get stuck - you can pay for accomodation and food etc with it in an emergency - but dont use otherwise.


There is info on cash cards on Martins money saving expert and moneysupermarket which is interesting reading too.
Last edited by Zuleika on January 26th, 2011, edited 1 time in total.
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busman7

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  • Added on: January 24th, 2011
If you have a credit card you can also preload it, saves paying interest when withdrawing cash.
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chriswilson7

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  • Added on: March 17th, 2011
Thanks for the feedback guys. It looks a pretty good option, and the coverage of Travelex as well as the card being Mastercard is reassuring too. I can't believe it would be refused anywhere in NZ, and having scrutinised the fees it really looks like there are none except initial loading (not reloading) and if an ATM has its own fees which I imagine it won't in general. I don't like credit cards unless I have to (feel free to convince me if it's really a good idea to get one just for the trip), so I'd be happy with this option backed up by my Visa debit card. :)

Lucky Luke

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  • Added on: March 18th, 2011
It's been a while since I was home but I do remember getting charged a lot of ATM fees - I just can't remember whether it was the ATMs charging for usage or my bank charging for cheating on them with a different bank's machine...

Seeing as you're from the UK, another option would be opening a Santander Zero current account. They don't charge any fees on overseas withdrawls. The only downside is you have to deposit £1,000 per month but it doesn't have to stay there so you could easily just ping the same £1,000 back and forth between that account and your existing one each month. (oh, and not to sound like a sales person but they're offering a £100 reward for switching to them at the moment!)

Enjoy NZ, give Chch a big hug for me :)

chriswilson7

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  • Added on: March 18th, 2011
Will definitely do that. I will certainly be going there and hope to give support in whatever way I can. I hope nobody you know has been badly affected.

The card is Mastercard, which is pretty much the most accepted worldwide cash system, and the website specifically states no ATM fees in NZ$ (unless the ATM itself charges any, which in the UK is rare). So it's not a bank-specific card, which is good. The Santander option is interesting, but probably not worth the hassle for me I think.

Feel free to pass on any tips for my travels - always good to get local knowledge. :)

Sean

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  • Added on: March 24th, 2011
Hey Chris,

When I go overseas, almost every ATM charges a fee to access my cash from my bank back home. It has nothing todo with the card that I have, just the bank "over there" (whereever that is) charges fees to others.

For Credit card - CapitalOne has the best fee structure for exchange rates - i.e. they don't rip you.

As for a special Travelex card, I have no idea - How is that different from your normal ATM/Debit card?
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chriswilson7

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  • Added on: March 24th, 2011
I couldn't probably answer you as an American specifically, but the card details are all at this link:
http://www.cashpassport.com/

Their fees guide seems pretty clear. As for the card - it's a travel card specifically so it should really be set up to take account of common travellers' issues. It is a pre-paid card where you 'load' your money onto it (converting it into the card currency when you load it - and it is free to reload) and then use it for transactions where you travel. Travelex are also well-known globally, so their repute is good to me and I'd feel my money was secure. I like the idea of putting my travel money onto the one card separate from my bank account and taking that with me for the one trip, rather than carrying large amounts of cash or the hassle of traveller's cheques.

Lucky Luke

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  • Added on: March 24th, 2011
chriswilson7 wrote:Will definitely do that. I will certainly be going there and hope to give support in whatever way I can. I hope nobody you know has been badly affected.


Thanks. Luckily none of my friends or family were hurt. A few people I know lost houses but all in all we've been incredibly lucky.


Feel free to pass on any tips for my travels - always good to get local knowledge. :)


Well, a lot of my canterbury based advice will sadly not be very useful but depending where you are headed, I'm sure I can help with a few other suggestions. Feel free to PM me your itinerary or anything you need advice on :D

WomanSeeksWorld

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  • Added on: April 12th, 2011
Be very careful with pre-paid cards, I got burnt by them travelling last year...just be sure to read the fine print and confirm all the charges etc. Good luck!
Im an Aussie living in London and have written a guide to help others doing the same.
Follow my adventures on the path to becoming a fully-fledged nomad.

chriswilson7

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  • Added on: April 12th, 2011
What happened?

Interestingly, the UK Foreign Office has the card advertised on the back of its Checklist for Travellers document sent out with new passports, though it does say that it doesn't 'endorse' the card - only that it is part of the 'know before you go' campaign.



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