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Exchange of money

In cooperation with: Visit Mexico
Zimmerman, Minnesota
2 posts
1 review
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Exchange of money

Is it true that I need to exchange my US $$$ for peso's, or can I get paso's from the ATM.

I know this sounds stupid, but a co-worker of mine told me that, when using the ATM we can indicate that you want your money in pasos not US $$

thanks for any infor

Lewiston, California
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9,609 posts
74 reviews
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1. Re: Exchange of money

Yes as it's Mexico the banks will show your available balance in Pesos. If you do not know your balance in dollars look at the post exchange rate in the bank's window & divide your balance by that rate. Normally around 11 to one. Kinda of neat as if you have 5,000 US in the bank it will show 5,500 pesos. Back in the old days when the rate was around 4,000 to one$250 US dollars was a MILLION pesos! If you choose to spend dollars you will lose about 9% on all transactions so unless you are super rich or just Tonto use pesos.

West Kelowna, Canada
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1,081 posts
3 reviews
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2. Re: Exchange of money


Let's see if we can make it simple:

Debit Card-- Comes direct from your account at the exchange rate the moment of the transaction. Charges are only what (IF ANY) your bank charges you for international withdrawals. Usually under $2 US -- NEW NOTE: Find out what bank is your bank's associate bank in Mexico, for example: Bank of America customers can withdraw cash with their Bank of America Check Card or ATM card without a fee at nearly 13,000 Bank of America ATMs in the United States and at over 12,000 international ATMs operated by members of the Global ATM Alliance. Santander Serfin in Mexico; Citibank is with Banamex

Credit card-- Accepted at hotels, better restaurants, some merchants. NOT preferred for shopping, see below. Using for cash advances will get you the WORST exchange of the day, involve about a 7.5% to 17% fee for processing PLUS your card company charges of 2% or so AND the international fee. Merchants accepting credit cards AUTOMATICALLY have the VAT deducted from their accounts; IN ADDITION, they have to pay the 7.5% to 17% processing fee, thus cash usually gets a 10% discount.

Cash-- US dollars accepted, usually at a bad rate. Pesos preferred; Canadian dollars looked at in strange ways in most places but accepted in many and the cambios. Traveler’s checks accepted at banks, cambios, hotels and many other places--same as cash.

Exchange rates:

Best-- The banks, only because you don't pay the ATM fee but you get to stand in line

2nd Best & most convenient-- ATM's, withdraw maximum amount, lose 0 to 1%, LOCATIONS -- airport, Commercial Mexicana (2), every bank and many other locations.

Cambios-- lose a few dollars on rate, OK for traveler’s checks and cash money

Credit Cards-- BIG HINT--IF you feel your account doesn't have the cash then take the cash advance BEFORE LEAVING HOME and put it in your account. You will save MAJOR dollars!!! OR spend a lot of time crying over the cost of your vacation after the fact.

You can carry Traveler’s checks, I am still carrying the same ones I bought 8 years ago.

3. Re: Exchange of money

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