Join our investing community

Where is the best place to exchange/convert money..?

Discussion in 'General Investing Discussion' started by Sk3tChY, 3rd Apr, 2008.

  1. Sk3tChY

    Sk3tChY Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    4th Aug, 2007
    Posts:
    358
    Location:
    Sydney, NSW
    I've never done this before, basically I have some American Dollars that I'd like to exchange for Australian Dollars.

    I know theres those small little places throughout the city which can exchange money for you, but I'm assuming that they will take a certain percentage for it, like most places.

    Its not a large some of money by any means, just like $60-$80 American.

    Is it possible to just go to my local bank and have it banked..? (CBA)

    Cheers.

    Sorry if this is the wrong forum.
     
  2. Simon Hampel

    Simon Hampel Co-founder Staff Member

    Joined:
    9th Jun, 2005
    Posts:
    4,619
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    Not all banks do foreign currency transactions - most of the larger branches do. You'd need to check.

    I did some hunting around back earlier this year before I went overseas and got quotes for how much US$500 would cost me - I was surprised by the difference between the various banks and money changers. The banks were generally cheapest - and the specialist money changers (Travellex etc) were generally the most expensive. I found an Amex kiosk inside a CBA branch at Chatswood that offered good rates, but on the day I needed to do the exchange, it turned out a little UAE exchange kiosk at the Chatswood Westfield was cheaper (they were still using the previous day's rates !!).

    These things change on a daily basis - but don't just look at the headline exchange rate - most charge a fee or commission (and often it is hidden). Ask them for a quote - it takes them only a couple of seconds.

    That being said - for only US$60-80 ... you're only talking a dollar or so difference possibly ... so it won't really matter.

    Note that they usually won't exchange coins - notes only.
     
  3. Bonnie

    Bonnie Member

    Joined:
    2nd Jan, 2008
    Posts:
    16
    Location:
    Brisbane
    I agree with Sim - google or make a few calls to see what rates/commissions are charged.

    I just changed some currency earlier this week and was amazed at both the different rates and the associated fees. I found one of the smaller banks (Bank of Qld) here had the best rates by far. Beware of those who go through AmEx as you'll cop another layer of fees. Post Office sounds good as they don't charge a commission but their rates were a lot lower and came out the worst when I did my ring around.

    Might only be a few dollars' difference, but they are YOUR dollars hey.

    Bonnie
     
  4. Sk3tChY

    Sk3tChY Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    4th Aug, 2007
    Posts:
    358
    Location:
    Sydney, NSW
    Ahh dam, I was hoping to have gotten a simpler answer. :p

    It's only small money we're talking bout here, so 1-2c difference in the rates doesn't really bother me to much. Its more the extra fees/charges I'm concerned about.

    Best option..?

    What are those little Kiosks in the City like..?

    Is there any bank that might just take it and convert it for free..?
     
  5. Simon Hampel

    Simon Hampel Co-founder Staff Member

    Joined:
    9th Jun, 2005
    Posts:
    4,619
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    No.

    Everyone will either charge you a commission, or will hide their commission by giving you a worse exchange rate.
     
  6. Sk3tChY

    Sk3tChY Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    4th Aug, 2007
    Posts:
    358
    Location:
    Sydney, NSW
    Ahh ok, what would probably be my best/easiest option then..? (City CBD wise)

    1. One of them small money exchange kiosks.
    2. CBA, and possibly NAB, I think my Citibank account deals thru NAB.
    3. Post Office.

    ---------------------------

    I mainly just don't wanna pay some hidden charge/fee of like a few bucks for exchanging or wateva, I don't mind getting a slightly lower rate, coz in the end it will probably only be a few cents. :p

    I think I might try one of them Kiosks in the city, prob the easiest option, anyone happen to know how they work..? (Do they charge a %, or have a fee, or anything)

    Note: Its mainly all notes, I got a bit of change, but it doesn't really bother me if that doesn't get exchanged, its just nickels and dimes or wateva the hell you call em.. lol
     
  7. Simon Hampel

    Simon Hampel Co-founder Staff Member

    Joined:
    9th Jun, 2005
    Posts:
    4,619
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    Just go up and ask them for a quote "how much AUD will I get for $X USD" ? They will punch a few keys on their computer and tell you - it's very quick.

    Then go down the road and ask someone else the same question - and you simply go with the one who offers more AUD for your USD.

    Remember that the exchange rates change at least daily - so you need to make all the comparisons at the same time.
     
  8. Sk3tChY

    Sk3tChY Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    4th Aug, 2007
    Posts:
    358
    Location:
    Sydney, NSW
    Ahhh k thanks, I'll do that this weekend or something prob when I'm in the city. I'll probably be drunk however, so I might end up trying to haggle with them, lol.

    Thanks for the info dudes. :)