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Old 08-13-2009, 09:57 AM
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I'll be visiting Jamaica, Puntarenas, Cartagena, Mexico. They have different currencies. Is it worth it getting U.S. traveler's checks (cruise ship site said some ports take TC) or just use U.S. cash and/or credit card or do I need to get the local currency?
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Old 08-13-2009, 10:53 AM
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Never been to Cartagena but all the other places take U.S. money. I haven't used traveler's checks in years although many still do. I just use cash and take a credit card ashore. I also inform the credit card issuer before I leave home and give them an itinerary, so they know to expect charges from wherever on X day.
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Old 08-13-2009, 11:21 AM
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I don't really want to get TC. They were useless in the U.K. a few years ago.
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Old 08-13-2009, 11:49 AM
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I don't know any place that doesn't love American Money. Credit card will give you a better exchange. But be advised your credit card company probably also will charge fees for exchange transactions. Only use the credit card in bigger stores like Diamonds International, Columbian Emeralds, etc. I wouldn't trust using them in a small store.
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Old 08-13-2009, 12:35 PM
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I wouldn't trust using them in a small store.
Like the fool who used a credit card at the native market on Labadee and was stunned when false charges appeared on his card statement.
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Old 08-13-2009, 12:58 PM
 
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I have never been charged for using the CC by my bank on any trip I have taken. Using the CC in any destination insures that you receive the accurate exchange rate for the day it is processed and you also have some recourse on your transactions. Good ole greenbacks are the best but know the exchange ahead of time or you will pay the price...Make sure you use it at only the reputable places.

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Old 08-13-2009, 01:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dave:
quote:
I wouldn't trust using them in a small store.
Like the fool who used a credit card at the native market on Labadee and was stunned when false charges appeared on his card statement.


I didn't even know they accepted cc!
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Old 08-13-2009, 01:23 PM
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Diamonds International, Columbian Emeralds, etc.
I don't think I'll be buying any gems this trip!
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Old 08-13-2009, 01:26 PM
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I was thinking that at smaller places, like street vendors, cash would be best and more established stores would accept cc. I know in Labadee the vendors seemed eager to get American cash.

I have been charged some exchange rate finance charge or something when I have used my cc for currencies other than American.

Do the ships post the current exchange rates? I have no idea what exchange rates in the Caribbean and Mexico are. Guess I need to find out.
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Old 08-13-2009, 02:52 PM
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A lot of credit cards are charging foreign transaction fees now. I read where Capital One doesn't. But I don't have a Capital One so I don't know. Each individual should call their credit card company before they leave to let them know they will be traveling, and they can ask about foreign transaction fees then.

I have never seen a ship post exchange rates for a Caribbean/Mexico cruise. Most likely because most people just use American money for Caribbean/Mexico, and the ship doesn't carry any exchange. However: I did see exchange rates posted on my Baltic cruise. The ship carried money to exchange for the Baltic ports.
 
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