Go Back   Horizons Unlimited - The HUBB > All Miscellaneous questions > Travellers' questions that don't fit anywhere else

Travellers' questions that don't fit anywhere else This is an opportunity to ask any question, and post any notice you wish that doesn't fit into one of the other sections.
Contact Overland Solutions for all your custom modifications and setup for overland travel.

LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 23 Mar 2007
Contributing Member
Veteran HUBBer
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: B.C. Canada
Posts: 214
Question ATM fee's in North and South America

Does anyone know of a North or South American bank that has minimal or no International ATM withdrawl fee's?
Like Nationwide in the UK.

We will be travelling in Central and South America this year.

Our Canadian Bank served us well in the past with $2 International fee's, but now want $5 per transaction.

With many local ATM's charging a user fee, this now works out to about $7.50 per transaction...

Let's see... About 20 countries with two transactions per country at $7.50 each = $300...OUCH
Reply With Quote
Old 24 Mar 2007
quastdog's Avatar
Contributing Member
Veteran HUBBer
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Chiangmai, Thailand
Posts: 510
Washington Mutual (WaMu) was about the only bank in the US that didn't charge ATM fees, but they discontinued that practice a couple years ago. Afraid you are probably out of luck in the US regarding free ATM access fees. I use an internet bank in the US that doesn't have its own ATM system - they reimburse me for up to $6.00 in ATM fees each month and as a consequence between that and using WaMu I haven't paid ANY bank service fees in years (when in the US). Canada has its own banks, weren't to unreasonable for the couple weeks I used Canuck ATM's.

I travelled through Cent. Am. in 4th quarter '06 - and am presently in Ecuador after having been in Colombia. Can't speak for the rest of SA.

As to Central and South America, there isn't a 'south american bank' - there's about 18 countries and I don't recall seeing any international banks serving them. Maybe there's a few International banks with branches in major cities in some countries, but I never investigated that - never saw them where I travelled. I just used each countries local bank. For the most part, I only paid currency conversion charges using my Visa debit card - generally in the neighborhood of 50 cents (USD) per $100. I occasionally paid an ATM charge - generally $1.50 USD, but it was rare - and I didn't shop around, just used the first ATM I found that was on the Plus system. (some places, there ain't any shopping around to do - there's an ATM, you use it).

Just guessing, I don't believe I have paid more than $10 USD per month for ATM fees and/or currency conversion charges since hitting Mexico in September - usually less than that I'm guessing (my charges are low - don't add them up at the end of the month). Maybe it has something to do with US bank issued Visa cards - could also be because El Salvador, Costa Rica, Panama and Ecuador recognize USD as official currency so I didn't have to pay currency conversion fees. Also, I take out $200 to $400 at a crack to minimize ATM fees.

Maybe the thing to do to hold down fees is to try to set up a Checking Account with a U.S. bank, get a Debit card attached to it and use that in N & S America - keep pumping money into the account from your main bank.
Chiang Mai, Thailand
Reply With Quote
Old 24 Mar 2007
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Norwich,Ontario,Canada
Posts: 788
atm fees in Mexico and C:A:

For folks from Canada travelling through Mex &CA there will always be a fee , rare is the home bank which does not charge such, and the USA ATMs can add an extra charge . I deal with BMO ,Scotiabank and TD cards and they all charge $3CDN for each transaction, no matter which ATM I pick. Just withdraw the max ammount and then it is not a big percentage
Scotiabank is all over Mexico and CA ,if that makes you comfortable, but any machine with the CIRRUS,MAESTRO, PLUS logo will work. Some of the smaller US banksĀ“ machines will only work for their own account holders.
Reply With Quote

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 Registered Users and/or Members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Bikes for North & South America WildStallions Which Bike? 30 6 Aug 2006 02:08
correcting headlight for use in South and North America nikb South America 7 18 Sep 2005 03:06
North America or South America? Abel Travellers' questions that don't fit anywhere else 3 12 Oct 2001 07:27
South America; Chile North through Columbia? sparerib Route Planning 2 9 Oct 2001 21:56
North or South America? Abel Route Planning 0 2 Oct 2001 15:35


HU DVD Summer Special!

Now that summer is here, get On the Road! Take 30% off the Achievable Dream - On the Road! 2-DVD set until August 31 only. Get On the Road! Learn the tips to staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure!

Our veteran travellers share their tips (and great stories) for staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure.

"A fantastic, informative and inspirational DVD."

"It's brilliant - thank you very much!"

Check it out at the HU Store! Remember to use Coupon Code 'ONTHEROAD' on your order when you checkout.

Renedian Adventures

Renedian Adventures

What others say about HU...

"I just wanted to say thanks for doing this and sharing so much with the rest of us." Dave, USA

"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the DVD series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring! The new look of the website is very impressive, updated and catchy. Thank you so very much!" Jennifer, Canada

"...Great site. Keep up the good work." Murray and Carmen, Australia

"We just finished a 7 month 22,000+ mile scouting trip from Alaska to the bottom of Chile and I can't tell you how many times we referred to your site for help. From how to adjust your valves, to where to stay in the back country of Peru. Horizons Unlimited was a key player in our success. Motorcycle enthusiasts from around the world are in debt to your services." Alaska Riders

contest pic

10th Annual HU Travellers Photo Contest is on now! This is an opportunity for YOU to show us your best photos and win prizes!

NEW! HU 2014 Adventure Travel T-shirts! are now available in several colors! Be the first kid on your block to have them! New lower prices on synths!

HU 2014 T-shirts now in!

Check out the new Gildan Performance cotton-feel t-shirt - 100% poly, feels like soft cotton!

What turns you on to motorcycle travel?

Global Rescue, WORLDwide evacuation services for EVERYONE

Global Rescue is the premier provider of medical, security and evacuation services worldwide and is the only company that will come to you, wherever you are, and evacuate you to your home hospital of choice. Additionally, Global Rescue places no restrictions on country of citizenship - all nationalities are eligible to sign-up!

New to Horizons Unlimited?

New to motorcycle travelling? New to the HU site? Confused? Too many options? It's really very simple - just 4 easy steps!

Horizons Unlimited was founded in 1997 by Grant and Susan Johnson following their journey around the world on a BMW R80 G/S motorcycle.

Susan and Grant Johnson Read more about Grant & Susan's story

Membership - help keep us going!

Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events (22 this year!); we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.

You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, the HUBB or to receive the e-zine. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.

Books & DVDs


All the best travel books and videos listed and often reviewed on HU's famous Books page. Check it out and get great travel books from all over the world.

Motorcycle Express for shipping and insurance!

Motorcycle Express

MC Air Shipping, (uncrated) USA / Canada / Europe and other areas. Be sure to say "Horizons Unlimited" to get your $25 discount on Shipping!
Insurance - see: For foreigners traveling in US and Canada and for Americans and Canadians traveling in other countries, then mail it to MC Express and get your HU $15 discount!

All times are GMT +1. The time now is 00:16.