We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Currency

7 posts
Save Topic
Currency

My husband and I leave for Banff/Jasper in a few days. We are American. Wondering what is our best option as far as Currency? Should we use credit cards? ATM For cash? Exchange at airport?

Mentioned in this post
Banff
Banff
Banff National Park, Canada
Jasper
Jasper
Jasper National Park, Canada
5 replies to this topic
Penticton, Canada
Level Contributor
18,229 posts
26 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Currency

CC and ATMs and with ATM you want to know the fees because if there is a fixed transaction fee you will not want to take small amounts out. and best to call your CC company to tell them you are traveling so they do not freeze your CC as it might get tagged as suspicious transaction.

Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
30,805 posts
59 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Currency

So, yes, knowing what your personal bank and credit card fees are can be helpful. You need to look at transaction fees AND exchange rate. Some cards don't charge a transaction fee, but they ding you on the exchange rate. Usually if there is a transaction fee, the exchange rate is fair.

Agree that we use our credit cards as much as possible and then just withdraw cash from the ATM. Usually cash transactions at foreign exchange booths have lousy rates of exchange. If you go that route, be careful about who operates the exchange booth. Small, privately operated ones can sometimes have really poor exchange rates. Going with a recognized company like Thomas Cook or Royal Bank is usually best.

Edmonton, Canada
Level Contributor
93 posts
Save Reply
3. Re: Currency

I would go to your local bank and buy as much Canadian cash as you expect you will need, preferably as $20 bills. Then I'd pay for hotels, meals, gas and most of my purchases with a credit card so I don't have to carry a lot of cash, and let the credit card company sort out the exchange on my credit card transactions. Yes, there will be a fee, but it won't be much.

Edited: 08 June 2018, 03:22
Penticton, Canada
Level Contributor
18,229 posts
26 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Currency

I would go to your local bank

no a good idea for Americans unless there are in a city where banks might have currency on hand - otherwise they will have to order it in and some charge service fees for doing that.

seattle
Destination Expert
for Seattle
Level Contributor
19,976 posts
108 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Currency

avoid at all costs airport exchange booths. The worst exchange rate anywhere!!!! USD should be about $1.29 Cdn. If you have US cash then exchange in Banff at the Clocktower mall at Freyas. They don't charge much and the rate is fair. More importantly check with your home bank to see what the ATM charges are before you leave.

Mentioned in this post
Banff
Banff
Banff National Park, Canada
Reply to: Currency
Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted