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Cash or Credit?

7 Jul 2008 AndrewW asked

I use my credit card for almost everything here in Canada. I dont like to carry cash. Im doing the Euro magic next month and im wondering how much cash to take. Im reading 100 euros a day is good. Id rather just throw it on credit card. I can see most shops taking credit card, not sure about restaurants. The only places I see myself needing cash is tips and for optional tours and of course the BARS! <BR><BR>Any advice would be nice <img src="" alt="Big Grin" width="15" height="15"><!--graemlin::D--><BR><BR>Thanks!
  • Read the responses 7 responses so far
  • 7 Jul 2008 work2travel said


    Well, you’ll def need cash to pay for your Optionals, as that’s the only method of payment they take on the European tours.

    Most of the bigger shops will take credit cards, but you’ll have to have your passport with you as ID. Also, you often need to have a bigger purchase amount in order to be able to use them.

    I’m a cc junkie as well, so when I travel I use it when I can to stretch my cash out longer, but always have enough cash just in case.

    Sort of a wishy-washy answer, but I hope it was helpful!

  • 8 Jul 2008 Explorer1104673 said

    Originally posted by T-ALF:
    My plan is to take out 300 Euros the day I arrive, use that until I need more cash and then take out another 300. For places the take CC I’ll use my CC. I’d like to use my CC as much as I can since I’ll get the best exchange rate.

    hey t-alf! which cc do you recommend taking, or do they all give you the best exchange rate?

  • 8 Jul 2008 Explorer1100929 said


    I would take more cash then cards. Trying to figure out just how much you spent isnt to fun. And if you do take cards ask your bank what the fees are. I used two different banks and one had fees and the other didn’t. Wish i would have known that before hand.

  • 9 Jul 2008 Explorer1104673 said


    thanks t-alf! i’m with you – i would rather bring a few more cards and have them available than not being able to do what i want!

  • 9 Jul 2008 MikeEd said


    I’ve been in Deutschland for 15 weeks so far and absolute loving it. From what I’ve found out so far I recommended the following.

    Rather than the exchange rates what you want to look at is the fixed fee per transaction and the % charged. The exchange rate may make a little difference but it is the €7 and normally about 2.5% that hurts more if you use the incorrect ATM machine. Go for the account that has the most ATMs you can use for free.

    You will definitely need to have cash on you for Europe. How would I say this politely? The successful leading countries in Europe such as Germany, France, Netherlands, Switzerland and Austria you could get buy with 50 euros in your pocket for small things and anything expensive you should be able to use your credit card. They generally still won’t take it for places like McDonalds, normally has to be at least €20. If you need more cash you can find machines quite quickly.

    For the other countries you are going to need cash always and you’ll see a cash machine once in a blue moon pretty much if you’re not actively looking for them.

    Once you get to Europe you’ll notice the contrast. Above the Alps things are different but everything just works and is really simple to deal with once adjusted. Below the Alps and um yeah, realise they know you’re going to go there no matter how bad it is.

    What I’ve learnt so far travelling on weekends.

    When I travel in Germany I take enough for two days spending money plus 100€ back in my passport neck pouch that I never use. The 100€ will get me back to were I’m staying if everything turns to scheiße. I tend to use cash for spending money and fixed large cost by creditcard. Such as train/plain/ hostels etc but if you’re on Contiki tour you have already paid for all that.

    When I’m travelling on a long weekend I’ll generally carry a little less money out but plan to get more at the midway point.

    Hope that is of some use

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