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cash passport - atm or debit card?

11 Sep 2011 hanmontana2011 asked


Hi all,
I am travelling through Italy and Spain in October and November and wanted some advice on the best cash passport card to purchase. Either a debit card or atm card? obviously i would also carry cash with me....

Thank you


  • Read the responses 11 responses so far
  • 11 Sep 2011 Aussie1 said


    have a look at

    high exchange rates too. seem like the cheapest way

    No international transaction fees. No matter where you are.

    Enjoy the freedom of the only Australian credit card¹ with no annual fees, no currency conversion fees and no international transaction fee

  • 13 Sep 2011 cdm115 said


    I would go with debit as you would be able to use it as a credit card or as an atm card. assuming all other things being equal.

  • 3 Oct 2011 Kirsten_Bailey said


    Hi Han,
    I am a travel agent and did a Contiki of Europe last year myself. I definitely suggest the Cash Passport Debit card as it allows you to pay for items by credit in shops/restaurants etc (with NO FEES) as well as withdraw money from an ATM machine if required. The ATM card only allows you to withdraw money from an ATM machine. I tried to use my Debit card as often as possible when making purchases to avoid fees and also as a security measure so i wasn’t carrying heaps of cash around at once. Hope this helps :) Kirsten

  • 3 Oct 2011 hanmontana2011 said


    Hi Kirsten

    Thanks for that – very useful – thats what i decided to do :)

  • 4 Oct 2011 Aussie1 said


    cash card is good with no fees, but it has a very low exchange rate of money

    just got back from europe and the 28 degree card work everywhere( mastercard credit ).( no fees)

    i would reccomend 2 cards

    28 degree card for all items you need to pay for and a cash card just a small out for any cash you need to get out when your away

  • 10 Nov 2011 Maggie said


    Hi Everyone.
    I am travelling to Thailand and Oz and doing 2 contiki’s back to back. Contiki always advise on this cash passport thing that iv never even heard of or the travelex shops which again never heard of. Am from Ireland so these dont exist here only laser/debit card and credit card. Am trying to avoid if at all possible using my debit/credit card to avoid all fees like curency change/ transaction fees etc which would add up to quite a bit over the 4 weeks.
    Is it possible to buy one on these cash passport things on arrival in Oz and transfer my money from my debit card then? I am weary about carrying too much cash on me and my main concern is I need to know how much im spending daily ….. Please offer any advice if you have been or similar experience etc Thanks! :)))

  • 10 Nov 2011 cdm115 said


    This is the UK site for Travelex, they might have something where you can order it through that site.

    Also, I know in the US American Express has a similar service.

    You might end up paying high fees if you do it through a debit card when you arrive. You can also use your debit card when you’re traveling, depending on bank fees it might be cheaper that way.

  • 10 Nov 2011 CanadianWhiskey said


    I’d do both. credit card for purchases. ATM/bank card to take money out. Some banks will let you pay a monthly fee to take withdrawals as many times as you like, or for a low fee each time.

  • 11 Nov 2011 JulieInSanDiego said


    I know that in the US if you go to Travelex and buy the cash passport it is only available in euros and British pounds, so it may be that they don’t offer this item in the currency for where you are traveling.

  • 4 Dec 2011 KristyChippa said


    For any Australians I would look at the ANZ travel card. Its the same as a travelex only less fees and the added feature of having different pins for your two cards which means if one is stolen or lost then only that one is cancelled and the otherone is still active. I have ues this card on my last two Europe trips. Last year I put all Euros on the card, this year as I visited Scandi and Russia which all have different currencies I just put Australian dollars on it and it convereted as I went. It still worked out cheaper than my regular visa debit card.

  • 5 Dec 2011 Explorer1307236 said


    I used my ATM Debit card for purchases & withdrawls! It did end up quite expensive. Next time i would use my Debit / Visa card for purchases and a travelex card for withdrawls.. Also most ATM’S only had a maximum of 300 EURO you could withdraw from so sometimes you had to do 2 transactions.

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