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Is it better to purchase Euros for U.S. dollars in the U.S. or in Europe? Thanks.
Some people like to exchange a small amount before going to Europe so they have some ready cash. However, it’s probably safer to exchange money in Europe than the U.S. All that cash could be lost or stolen during your travels. Instead of exchanging all your money in the U.S., consider putting most of your travel money into an account that you can access through your debit card. You will find ATMs or other money exchange facilities at most airports so it is easy to get cash when you arrive in Europe.
Once in Europe, you can use your debit card in one of the many ATMs to get cash in the local currency or to pay bills. However, there will probably be some fees. Before leaving the U.S. find out if your bank is partnered with a European bank that allows you to use their ATMs for free.
You can also use an ATM to get a cash advance on your credit card. However, this is expensive as you have to pay fees plus interest charges. If you plan to use your credit card in Europe, before leaving the U.S. find out what your credit card company charges for conversions. Some will charge a flat fee and others will charge a percentage (generally 1-3%) of the amount converted.
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