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cash or credit?

In cooperation with: Visit Mexico
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Surrey
posts: 7
cash or credit?

Is it better to use Pesos, US dollare or a credit card?

Olympia, WA
Destination Expert
for Cabo San Lucas
posts: 8,226
reviews: 9
21. Re: cash or credit?

Retired a little before age 62, and have actually wasted $35 here or there in my life.

Anacortes...
posts: 5,363
reviews: 13
22. Re: cash or credit?

Now I always pay with the type of money quoted. Before I learned this lesson, I was at the mall and the price was listed in US dollars, but I only had pesos. When I got back to my room and figured out how much I really paid - I was surprised. They gave me an awful exchange rate - for using pesos!

And I'm one of those travelers that has to watch every penny :-(. If I didn't I would have to give up my trip to Cabo and that's not acceptable!!! I just love Cabo too much to stay away!

Cabo San Lucas...
posts: 1,399
reviews: 18
23. Re: cash or credit?

Boraxo - I'm 56 and retired 2 years ago, so not worried about working to 65, and by the way - you are wrong - period

Eljefe – I’m with you. I must admit, I too have wasted a dollar or 2 and I somehow still manage to pay my bills (except for the months I have to pay for beer for bwask and SJ)

Newgrama - you are right. There are a number of times where paying in USD is the cheaper deal. I have Pesos and USD accounts but usually only carry pesos. I have gone to the bank before to get USD because the "reverse" exchange was really bad on a larger purchase.

Indianapolis...
posts: 667
reviews: 19
24. Re: cash or credit?

I use all three forms of payment. I take US dollars and a Capital One card. I exchange a couple of hundred dollars into pesos at the hotel and carry those around for small purchases, lunch, etc. I'll use dollars for touristy things where the prices are posted in dollars, i.e. when I want to to go jetskiing, or buy something from a beach vendor. Cab fare is also usually quoted in USD, so I'm good with that. More expensive things like dinners at nice restaurants, or the tab I run up at the hotel pool bar, I put on the Cap One card and pay off when I get home. Pretty easy, really. And, never had any problems with the credit card, but mostly only use it at restaurants and hotels.

Colorado Springs...
posts: 747
reviews: 13
25. Re: cash or credit?

For the most part we pay for everything with pesos unless it's a big purchase or expensive dinner, then we use our USAA credit card which is very good with fraud purchases etc in the event there is ever a problem. We try to limit the trips to the bank ATMs, and get out enough pesos to last a bit. We always keep our receipts from the machine.

We've never had any issues.

Edited: 4:35 pm, February 06, 2013
Danville, California
posts: 1,668
reviews: 107
26. Re: cash or credit?

Strange to hear of retirees flushing their money away but I guess that is why you are in Mexico not in California. It costs money to live here, you can't be throwing away $$$ every time you go on a trip. If you waste $35 a week and live in Cabo, that's $1820/year. Just pennies to you, of course.

It always annoys me when people post bad advice on the basis that it doesn't matter to them. Millions of people visit TA every day and look to these boards for advice. I'd bet most savvy travelers end up saving $$$ on their trips thanks to TA. But no thanks to people who think an 11% premium doesn't add up.

As for anecdotes, I can confirm that taxis always ask for the fare in USD. And every time we ask for the peso rate, it is always about 10-20% less. Contrary to years ago, nobody in Mexico seems to want USD anymore so they rip off the tourists when quoting USD rates. Or maybe just more greed. In any case, it pays to carry pesos, and to pay with credit cards where you can. These days, pretty much everyone takes credit cards except taxis and buses.

Olympia, WA
Destination Expert
for Cabo San Lucas
posts: 8,226
reviews: 9
27. Re: cash or credit?

Here's some good advice for you Boraxo. Don't sweat the small stuff. You might live to enjoy retirement.

Cabo San Lucas...
posts: 1,399
reviews: 18
28. Re: cash or credit?

Eljefe- could not have said it better

Boraxo - fyi - we have a place in Cabo because we love Cabo. We do have a home in the US so we can be near our daughters. Sorry if we don't have a California mansion like you do.

BTW - Unlike you, I don't count other people's money or tell them how to spend it or how or when to retire. I just gave the numbers on the worst case if you only spent USD so everyone can make their own decision. I think having and using a mixture of USD, peso and CC is the most economical way.

My story - I had to use one of the TA favorites to go to the airport. They quoted USD. I did not have USD so I asked for a peso price. They used 14 to 1 to covert. Not a very good deal paying in pesos

29. Re: cash or credit?

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