Although the eurozone makes it possible to carry vacation cash in your pocket, this storage is neither convenient nor safe. At the latest when traveling outside the EU, the question of suitable payment methods becomes urgent. As a rule, it is best to combine different means of payment.
In the USA and Scandinavia, cash is on its way to becoming an exotic relict. You can pay by credit card practically everywhere – even for small amounts. Most vacationing countries are still a long way from that. Especially when paying away from the tourist centers, in small stores or pubs, cash continues to be true. Holidaymakers should also always have a few coins or small bills ready for the usual tips. In some travel countries, by the way, the euro – and even more often the U.S. dollar – is much more popular than the domestic soft currency.
Bank or credit cards
If you carry a thick wallet with you, from which, in the worst case, the banknotes stick out, you attract the attention of thieves. The bank cards of credit institutions and international payment systems are much more practical. Larger bills (for example, in supermarkets, hotels and restaurants) can be paid directly with this "plastic money" in many countries. However, the acceptance of credit cards such as Mastercard, American Express and Visa varies considerably from country to country. Who does not inform itself before beginning of the journey, must count possibly on surprises.
Actually, the name EC card has been replaced by the payment system "Giropay", but is still more common in the language use. The acceptance of EC card or. Giropay reaches far beyond Europe these days. However, it is especially important to inform yourself about the respective country conditions. At the latest when booking an international rental car, there is hardly any way around a credit card, as car rental companies can block a deposit with its help.
Withdraw money worldwide
Particularly practical when traveling abroad is the possibility to pay with your bank or credit card. Credit card to be able to withdraw fresh cash from ATMs. However, German financial institutions sometimes charge considerable fees for this service, which provide for a percentage of the amount withdrawn. Due to a defined minimum fee, withdrawals of small amounts are particularly uneconomical. However, there are a handful of exceptions with free foreign withdrawals, which vacationers can read about here.
Another money-saving tip: When withdrawing money from an ATM, you should always select an option such as "direct withdrawal". Offers such as "currency conversion" usually conceal considerable – and completely unnecessary – additional fees. This applies above all to ATMs in Great Britain, the Czech Republic and Poland.