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DBT Corporate Travel Information - Travel Guide

Money matters

* Access to cash using credit cards and EFTPOS cards via ATM machines is replacing the traditional method of travellers cheques in many countries.

* Credit cards are a must for Australians’ travelling to Europe, but remember, if you want to use them in ATMs you need a PIN number. Contact your bank for further information.

* It's a good idea to leave home with your card in credit especially if you intend using it to obtain cash at ATMs. Cash transactions are free when you're in credit but cost up to $6 when you're not. Ordinary credit card purchases don't incur a fee.

* With EFTPOS, many countries aren't as advanced as Australia and you may not be able to use your card to make purchases. However, they do work in ATMs around the world but each cash withdrawal costs up to $6.

* Don't expect shops to act as banks like they do in Australia. Some places will only give out cash if you spend a certain amount, while most won't give you cash at all.

* Credit cards are great for big purchases if you want to keep a record of them, or if you are going to a country where the banking system is not as efficient as Australia.

* Don't put all your eggs in one basket. Take some foreign exchange with you because the rate you receive in Australia could be better than overseas. Also take some travellers cheques and credit cards/ATM cards.

* In some countries, the rate of exchange is far better for cash than travellers cheques.

* Always take some local currency for the country you're visiting. Remember, not every country has easy money access and you don't want to arrive in a strange country on a wet Sunday without enough for coffee or a pay toilet.

* Get your foreign exchange at a bank because the rate will probably be better than at the airport (bureau de change).

* Travellers cheques sometimes offer a better exchange rate than cash because they are easier and safer for banks to deal with. However, most shops, B&Bs etc won't take them, so you'll need money too.

* Always carry your passport when you want to cash a travellers cheque, most places won't cash them without it.

* Keep a record of your travellers cheque numbers and note the number's you've cashed.

* Leave cash, travellers cheques etc in a safe place, eg the hotel safe. Don't carry all your money with you, spread it among your wallet, suitcases etc.

* Work out in your mind a rough currency calculation guide (eg $US, multiply by 1.6 to get rough Australian equivalent)

* In most cities you can buy a public transport day pass which is cheaper then buying sectors.

* Hotels charge like wounded bulls for all telephone calls. Telstra have phone cards with serial and pin numbers for overseas use. Dial a toll free number, enter your serial and pin numbers then the number you want to call. If you're in the UK dialing home you are charged at Australian rates. Remember to call at times when Australian rates are low (7am - 7pm UK time).