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Thread: Worlds travel tips

  1. #1
    Custom Title CoyoteChris's Avatar
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    Worlds travel tips

    I have never traveled outside of the US, so I am playing newbie trying to find out tips...herer is what I found out so far for Worlds.

    1. My debit card may be used in Canada without penalty FROM MY BANK. The exchange rate is figured in. My bank said to make sure that the Canadian Merchant wouldnt be adding on any fees.
    2. My credit card company WILL be adding on a three percent "out of country" fee if I chose to use that. Guess which card I will use to pay my motel room with?
    3. My bank will "sell" me Canadian Currancy at the exchange rate for free if given two weeks notice to procure it.....
    Chris going Looney

  2. #2
    Missing Tdizzle and SDiggity golden411's Avatar
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    At the risk of mentioning the obvious:

    Do you have the necessary travel documentation for crossing the U.S.-Canada border? If I am not mistaken:

    - If you are flying to/from Canada, you will need a U.S. passport.

    - If you are driving to/from Canada, a U.S. passport card will suffice in lieu of a traditional U.S. passport.

    But I believe that in either case, a U.S. driver's license and/or birth certificate is not sufficient.

    Have a great time, Chris! I look forward to your reports.
    Last edited by golden411; 02-01-2013 at 12:39 PM.

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    skating philosopher Mrs. P's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CoyoteChris View Post
    I have never traveled outside of the US, so I am playing newbie trying to find out tips...herer is what I found out so far for Worlds.

    1. My debit card may be used in Canada without penalty FROM MY BANK. The exchange rate is figured in. My bank said to make sure that the Canadian Merchant wouldnt be adding on any fees.
    2. My credit card company WILL be adding on a three percent "out of country" fee if I chose to use that. Guess which card I will use to pay my motel room with?
    3. My bank will "sell" me Canadian Currancy at the exchange rate for free if given two weeks notice to procure it.....
    Chris going Looney
    I wouldn't recommend using a debit card for hotel rooms --- http://lifehacker.com/5815138/why-yo...-or-rental-car -- of course this is irrelevant if you have a ton of cash in your bank account.

    But that said, even if your credit card is charging a higher fee they may offer some things that may be beneficial. I know my Costco Amex offers some travel perks (namely insurance) so I don't have to pay for them. Those perks may be worth the fee.

    Always a great idea to secure a certain amount of cash. Don't have too much on you and keep what you aren't using in the hotel safe.

    Looks like U.S. and CAN dollar is basically the same, which means you'll be paying a little bit more in U.S. dollars (don't be surprised to see a turkey dinner at Denny's cost like $15. Seriously this happened to me once.)

    Get Tim Hortons coffee while you're there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CoyoteChris View Post
    I have never traveled outside of the US, so I am playing newbie trying to find out tips...herer is what I found out so far for Worlds.

    1. My debit card may be used in Canada without penalty FROM MY BANK. The exchange rate is figured in. My bank said to make sure that the Canadian Merchant wouldnt be adding on any fees.
    2. My credit card company WILL be adding on a three percent "out of country" fee if I chose to use that. Guess which card I will use to pay my motel room with?
    3. My bank will "sell" me Canadian Currancy at the exchange rate for free if given two weeks notice to procure it.....
    Chris going Looney
    I travel internationally somewhat. Those 2-3% credit card foreign transaction fees are quite annoying and can add up quickly.
    If your (checking-account) bank charges little-to-no fees to withdraw cash at a foreign ATM, this is the most economic way to get cash. My bank charges $1 per ATM withdrawal and sometimes that was much better than those 3% foreign transaction fees.

    There are some credit cards that do not charge any foreign transaction fees at all. Capital One card for example.

    Enjoy your experience!

  5. #5
    Custom Title CoyoteChris's Avatar
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    Pretty true. There is something called an "enhanced" drivers licence with passport info imbedded in a microchip in the license.
    but that does not work for flying....only driving....thank you for your best wishes....just wish Worlds would start answering some questions I have....


    Quote Originally Posted by golden411 View Post
    At the risk of mentioning the obvious:

    Do you have the necessary travel document for crossing the U.S.-Canada border? If I am not mistaken:

    - If you are flying to/from Canada, you will need a U.S. passport.

    - If you are driving to/from Canada, a U.S. passport card will suffice in lieu of a traditional U.S. passport.

    But I believe that in either case, a U.S. driver's license and/or birth certificate is not sufficient.

    Have a great time, Chris! I look forward to your reports.

  6. #6
    Custom Title CoyoteChris's Avatar
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    Thanks for that excellent link! You do make good points. I get one percent back on my card so I would be loosing 2 percent if I pay the 3 percent fee with my credit card...or about $20 bucks....the money is in the bank, but credit cards are safer in some ways.
    Quote Originally Posted by Mrs. P View Post
    I wouldn't recommend using a debit card for hotel rooms --- http://lifehacker.com/5815138/why-yo...-or-rental-car -- of course this is irrelevant if you have a ton of cash in your bank account.

    But that said, even if your credit card is charging a higher fee they may offer some things that may be beneficial. I know my Costco Amex offers some travel perks (namely insurance) so I don't have to pay for them. Those perks may be worth the fee.

    Always a great idea to secure a certain amount of cash. Don't have too much on you and keep what you aren't using in the hotel safe.

    Looks like U.S. and CAN dollar is basically the same, which means you'll be paying a little bit more in U.S. dollars (don't be surprised to see a turkey dinner at Denny's cost like $15. Seriously this happened to me once.)

    Get Tim Hortons coffee while you're there.

  7. #7
    Custom Title CoyoteChris's Avatar
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    Very true. Everyone's ATM, cards, banks, etc are different. My bank warned me to read the disclosues carefully before using an ATM in Canada...and ever since my wife's identity was stolen when she let a waitress take away her credit card out of her sight to pay for a meal, I only use cash to pay for dinners....believe me, you dont want a call in the middle of the night from Wells Fargo asking you if you are trying to send money to the West Indes and Bulgaria....
    Quote Originally Posted by gimble View Post
    I travel internationally somewhat. Those 2-3% credit card foreign transaction fees are quite annoying and can add up quickly.
    If your (checking-account) bank charges little-to-no fees to withdraw cash at a foreign ATM, this is the most economic way to get cash. My bank charges $1 per ATM withdrawal and sometimes that was much better than those 3% foreign transaction fees.

    There are some credit cards that do not charge any foreign transaction fees at all. Capital One card for example.

    Enjoy your experience!

  8. #8
    skating philosopher Mrs. P's Avatar
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    Chris I'm surprised you've never been to BC. given our state's proximity to it. Let me know how Ontario treats you -- will you have time to go to Toronto or any of the other cities?

    You might be better off getting cash ahead of time, but that said, I never have had problem getting cash from an ATM. I find your bank won't charge much, it's the ATM of the other bank that might ding you. But sometimes they don't. I withdrew money from ATMs in Seoul and they didn't really charge me much of anything.

    Just wondering, which airline will you be flying with?

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    Having been to US's 51st state a few times, they all take USD. From parking to food to hotel to anything. It's Canada, not Republic of Congo. Your dollar will work there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CoyoteChris View Post
    My bank warned me to read the disclosues carefully before using an ATM in Canada...and ever since my wife's identity was stolen when she let a waitress take away her credit card out of her sight to pay for a meal, I only use cash to pay for dinners....believe me, you dont want a call in the middle of the night from Wells Fargo asking you if you are trying to send money to the West Indes and Bulgaria....
    Yeah. Definitely something to watch out for.

    A friend used his credit card in the gas station in Windsor Canada just once. By the time he returned to the US two days later, there were already many charges by someone else.

    That same year, I used my credit card in Madrid airport to connect to the internet (hence, it never left my sight) and someone set up an escort website and bought domain name and equipments on my card and it was used to set up a paypal account as well.

    But that was in 2005. Even though I've been to other countries once or twice every year and use ATM for cash withdrawal and credit cards for purchases, I haven't had any issues since then. Maybe just lucky (so far)...

  11. #11
    Custom Title CoyoteChris's Avatar
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    I am flying on United. They are the only US airline that flys from Spokane all the way, with stops and hubs, to London. I figure if flights go "south", they will take care of me.
    As an accidental tourist, I am going to try certain things and see what happens....I will take Canadian money but try US money first, for instance. Will write up a report. No time to or desire to take in other activities....or cities....
    I am going to try and be open minded about Canada in my report and I have a friend who has nothing but nice things to say about Canadians....however, I have way more friends with not so nice things to say about the border guards and how Canadian citizens treat Americans that I have to wonder what the truth is? We shall see!

    Quote Originally Posted by Mrs. P View Post
    Chris I'm surprised you've never been to BC. given our state's proximity to it. Let me know how Ontario treats you -- will you have time to go to Toronto or any of the other cities?

    You might be better off getting cash ahead of time, but that said, I never have had problem getting cash from an ATM. I find your bank won't charge much, it's the ATM of the other bank that might ding you. But sometimes they don't. I withdrew money from ATMs in Seoul and they didn't really charge me much of anything.

    Just wondering, which airline will you be flying with?

  12. #12
    Tripping on the Podium
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    I would suggest getting Canadian Money for any cash purchases, a lot of places won't take US. There are a couple of banks right near the Arena, I know some have partnerships with US banks so the fees might not be too high.

    The London airport is a nice small airport, and there will be a long line of cabs waiting to take you to your hotel. Check with your hotel on the cost of a cab, depending on were you are staying it can be far from the airport.

    Note on the board guards, your know it goes both ways, I have felt like a criminal trying to get into the US thru the land guards, i think it is just the nature of the job.

  13. #13
    Tripping on the Podium
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    I am shocked that it will take your bank two weeks to get a foreign currency that seems crazy. I ordered Swiss Francs from my Canadian Bank and it only took 3 days. You can always bring american and exchange it at the local banks, RBC, BMO, TD they always buy it from you at a cheaper rate, and there might be an exchange fee since you don't belong to the bank.

  14. #14
    Custom Title CoyoteChris's Avatar
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    I heard back from my bank when I went in personally. It takes "4 days" or so..and costs 12 bucks for $400...we shall see. There seems to be no free lunch here....unless you use your debit card and the Canadians dont add a fee. Anyway, $400 should get me through the week.....the cab will be about $30 to the hotel......a far cry from "free shuttle on demand" at the hotels at Omaha. But London is no worse than some hotels in Colorado Springs.
    Quote Originally Posted by waterblades View Post
    I am shocked that it will take your bank two weeks to get a foreign currency that seems crazy. I ordered Swiss Francs from my Canadian Bank and it only took 3 days. You can always bring american and exchange it at the local banks, RBC, BMO, TD they always buy it from you at a cheaper rate, and there might be an exchange fee since you don't belong to the bank.

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    Spiral Lover tulosai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CoyoteChris View Post
    I heard back from my bank when I went in personally. It takes "4 days" or so..and costs 12 bucks for $400...we shall see. There seems to be no free lunch here....unless you use your debit card and the Canadians dont add a fee. Anyway, $400 should get me through the week.....the cab will be about $30 to the hotel......a far cry from "free shuttle on demand" at the hotels at Omaha. But London is no worse than some hotels in Colorado Springs.
    It depends who you bank with but if your bank has ATMs in Canada there is often no fee. I bank motly with citibank and while they are not AS great about it as they used to be, I've made ATM with drawls in Ireland, Germany, France, Spain, Canada in the past 4 years and never been charged a conversion fee.

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