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Old 01-23-2019, 08:43 PM   #1
Join Date: Jan 2016
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Bucks for Loons

While researching for a Canadian trip this year, I don't recall seeing anything about exchanging US $ for Canadian $ while crossing the border and I have several questions: Where do you exchange your cash? Can you use a VISA on an USA bank like you can south of the border? Is this really a big deal?

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Old 01-23-2019, 08:52 PM   #2
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My bank got the Canadian currency I needed. Took 3 business days and there was an exchange fee.
Ask your CC about use in Canada, we got one that had no fee attached and used it as needed.
Travel safe

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Old 01-24-2019, 12:05 AM   #3
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We've used our Visa in Canada, Mexico, Europe, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Fiji, New Zealand.
A Visa is a Visa, accepted all over the world.
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Old 01-24-2019, 12:17 AM   #4
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Definitely call and ask if you will be charged foreign exchange/transaction fees on your particular VISA card. Some do, some don't. Our friends didn't ask and were surprised with all the extra charges when they got home.

So we knew to ask before we went to Canada. Most of our cards charged a fee. Surprising! Luckily we had a few that did not. The exchange rate was handled automatically by the card company so we didn't have to worry about that when purchasing anything. The receipt was Canadian dollars but the statement charge was in converted US dollars.

We never exchanged cash. Everywhere we went they took US cash and gave us change in Canadian. Then we just ensured we spent the Canadian before we came back.

Have fun!!
Scott and Liz - Southern NM
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Old 01-26-2019, 12:43 PM   #5
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I know that when we travel to the US from Canada I can get US currency from an ATM or even Wal-Mart by using my Canadian debit card. The bank I use in Canada has a reciprocal agreement with the Bank of America which gives me free transactions if I use their ATMs. Check with your bank in the US, they may have a similar arrangement with a Canadian bank. The exchange rate is calculated on whatever it is on the day. Right now it is very good for US residents coming north and you get something like $1.30+ CAD for a US $1.

Most POS visa and debit card terminals in Canada now use the chip and PIN instead of the swipe.

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Old 01-26-2019, 02:38 PM   #6
Just as confused as you
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When we took our trip to Niagara Falls, Canada we were by the hotel desk clerk to do the exchange at a casino 4 blocks over. Their hotel policy was to charge an exchange fee so they were telling all their US patrons who to ask for at the cashiers booth at what time of the day.
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Old 01-26-2019, 04:42 PM   #7
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We converted US to Canadian at the credit union before we left. After we got to Dawson Creek we decided we needed more Canadian so we exchanged more Canadian at a bank in Dawson Creek, it was open on Saturday. I used our credit cards to start with but then I used all Canadian, very little US cash. I carry credit cards that donít have a foreign transaction fee.

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