Itís Your Money > Money Exchanging

First trip money questions

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Or you can just withdraw cash in ATM at the airport.  Thatís what I do when in need of cash (for cab/uber to the hotel).

^Ooops, wasnít able to read all the replies. 

Oh okay, you may want to google the nearest money exchange shop from the hotel (trusted aside from SM are sanryís and czarina).  That is if you want to exchange your dollar to Philippine pesos.

If you are going to withdraw pocket money in the airport, maybe it is better to withdraw the intended Php5000 instead of just Php1000 because itís the same withdrawal fee regardless of how much is withdrawn (possibly).  Exchange rate difference from other means wouldnít hurt since itís just $100.


--- Quote from: Montanacal on March 31, 2018, 12:30:34 AM ---Hi All,,

I am going over for the first time in May,,

I have read about Xoom, Transferwise and others. I have watched videos about arriving there, using the ATM for some quick cash for the taxi situation and another video about going to an exchange place and what to look for in all of that.

Thats a lot of variation.

My questions are thus

I get off the plane and go where?
Do what?
Use what service?

Yes its remedial and wide open,,

I ask in this way because theres seemingly myriad of possibilities

--- End quote ---

My advice would be to bring some nice crisp new $100 and $50 bills to start with, for those from the U.S. and crisp new largest bills when from other countries, also I would recommend those from the U.S. open accounts with Charles Schwab or Fidelity while still in the U.S. so they can use ATM machines for free since both reimburse fees ATM fees charged. I use Fidelity and always have a couple of other bank ATM cards with me as well when here, then either use the ATM at the airport to get pesos or go to the money changer there and exchange $50 to $100 worth to get you started.

Should it really matter to any of us who have just spent a large amount in airfare that we will get a few pesos less at the airport than at money changers elsewhere, the difference in my opinion is just not worth worrying about when exchanging $50 or $100 but over time getting the largest exchange rate can mean a huge difference in total cost of living.

Next, of course off to the hotel, and then ask at the hotel which money changers in your area offer the best rates and go from there, usually go to a local mall and there is often many money changers there, I check the rate online HERE to give me a general idea of close to what I should get, usually get 10 to 30 centavos less than the online rate except in the airport, then it will be a couple of pesos less.

My opinion is to always have more than one way to get money, there had been times when I saw that the ATM machines were empty or not working for some people when people tried to use them, the money changer is usually open but I had seen no one in the booth one time when my wife and I arrived in Cebu. Also one time years back the international cable got cut and I was unable to get money from the ATM for days using my U.S. ATM card but no issue when using cash at money changers, my point is to always have a backup plan because I have personally found that nothing is for sure when in the Philippines.

Enjoy your trip..

I forgot to add, before you leave, make sure to tell your credit card companies and banks or sign into your accounts and do it, if possible, that you will be in the Philippines.


--- Quote from: Montanacal on March 31, 2018, 01:54:01 AM ---Ya,, my first impression and I don't know if its correct,, ATM for some pocket money,, just for little things the night that I arrive. I bet I wouldn't need 1000p that night as I land at  10:15pm and I have a shuttle to the hotel..

So then the next day I need to find out where to exchange about 1000USD for the next leg of things.


--- End quote ---

ATMs in the PHL charge a fixed fee usually P250 per withdrawal.  So if you are going to use an ATM you should withdraw the maximum allowed if you want to minimize costs.


ATM withdrawal P2,500.  The P250 fee would be a 10% fee.

ATM withdrawal P10,000 (maximum allowed for most ATMs).  The P250 fee would be a 2.5% fee.

ATM withdrawal P20,000 (maximum allowed for a BPI ATM).  The P250 fee would be a 1.25% fee.


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