Passbook Account for Banks

I have been researching about banks in the Philippines and I have read just about all the info regarding banking here on this forum, which is really helpful. The banks have accounts with or without passbooks.  Here goes...

1) I think I understand that with a passbook account, you will get this little book where they stamp it with the amount of money every time you make a deposit or withdrawal.

Does this mean that you would not be able to make ATM withdrawals if you have a passbook account?

2)  Can you deposit or withdraw money branch-to-branch - let's say if you have an account with BPI since they have many branches?

3)  If you have a passbook account, will your transactions be recorded in their computer system? 

4)  What are the advantages and/or disadvantages of a passbook account?

Honestly, I am ignorant about a passbook account (can you tell?). When my husband and I were working (yes, we worked for the same company), Bank of America was just across the street from our office so we just crossed the street to do our banking business.  We seldom used the ATM as well, we just used the tellers for any transactions.

Well, thank you very much. I sure will appreciate your information and answers.

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I too have a Bank of America account since day one when I started working in my younger years and still have an account with them today! My accounts here in the Philippines is with BPI since 1998.

I will answer your questions of what I've experience since we retired here in the Philippines since 1998.

1)  I think I understand that with a passbook account, you will get this little book where they stamp it with the amount of money every time you make a deposit or withdrawal. Does this mean that you would not be able to make ATM withdrawals if you have a passbook account?

With an RP passbook account, you will not have ATM or on-line access. You will have to go to your local RP bank in person when you need to deposit or withdraw your money, usually in dollars and convert your dollars into pesos and deposit the pesos into your peso saving  and or checking account that has ATM and on-line access.

2)  Can you deposit or withdraw money branch-to-branch - let's say if you have an account with BPI since they have many branches?

YES, in person and or with an ATM card from your RP local band

3)  If you have a passbook account, will your transactions be recorded in their computer system? 

YES, but you have no ATM and no on-line access with a passbook type account!

4)  What are the advantages and/or disadvantages of a passbook account?

Depends if you have U.S. direct deposit of your pension into your RP local dollar passbook account(which I don't recommend, because your passbook can only be used with that one bank only where you opened your passbook account with direct deposit).

You can write out U.S. personal checks for deposit into your RP local bank dollar savings or passbook account which takes 25 days to clear and post to you RP local dollar savings account, you have no ATM or on-line access with your RP local bank passbook account, but with a regular RP dollar savings account, you do have ATM and on-line access!

Other tips about banking in the Philippines:

* Avoid using your U.S. credit or ATM cards here in the Philippines unless it's for emergencies, because there are additional charges using ATMs other than your own bank!

*Local RP banks usually have low exchange rates! Looking around for reputable money changers for the better exchange rates!

*IMHO, don't even bother with passbook accounts! Just keep your U.S. bank accounts active with your pension directly deposited into them, checking and or savings. Bring your U.S. bank personal checks with you to the Philippines so you can write out checks for deposit! You could transfer from your U.S. bank to your RP bank account, but it will cost you in service charges! I call my BPI account, my "free banking system", because I just write out my U.S. personal check for deposit into my RP dollar account and pay no additional service fees! When my deposits has cleared after 25 days and has posted, I just go on-line to convert my dollars and transfer my pesos to my other peso accounts and then I just go out to any BPI bank to withdraw my pesos via their ATM, P20,000 limit per day per ATM account or in the bank via their bank teller over the counter to get more than P40,000 from two ATM accounts! 

*I use my BPI ATM card at selected Mercury Drug stores listed on TRICARE Heath Coverage to pay for my prescriptions, because I get two receipts, an OR and cashier receipt I can use to file for my reimbursement claim to TRICARE to get 75% of what I paid for my meds!  I also use my BPI ATM to purchase large ticket items where they accept ATM transactions so I that won't have to carry large sums of pesos on my person! I also have a BPI pesos checking account I use to pay my building contractor by check when our home was being built!

*Keep the majority of your money in your U.S. Bank account and have easy access to it!  Anything over $10,000 in your RP bank dollar/peso account, you'll have to report it to IRS at tax time!

* It's ill advisable to have your U.S. pensions directly deposited to your RP dollar savings account, because you can only avail their dollar passbook type account only at that one branch where you opened your passbook account and without ATM or on-line access, unless you're an old fuddy duddy (miser/tight wad) Granny computer illiterate type of person and that's the way you prefer to do your banking transactions!