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UK Travel - Spending Money?

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  1. #1

    Question UK Travel - Spending Money?

    Hi all,

    In July, I will be visiting my family who lives there for a month. What’s the best way to take spending money? I don’t want to carry alot of cash with me. I have a standard chartered bank account and SC Cathay Mastercard but I’m guessing using that will be expensive?

    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated


  2. #2

    Join Date
    Aug 2017
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    2,155
    Quote Originally Posted by KJSpence:
    Hi all,

    In July, I will be visiting my family who lives there for a month. What’s the best way to take spending money? I don’t want to carry alot of cash with me. I have a standard chartered bank account and SC Cathay Mastercard but I’m guessing using that will be expensive?

    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated
    Withdraw cash there with union pay or use credit card. CC exchange rates are usually reasonable but the convenience trumps saving whatever small % in rates you get from the cut rate places here. Just get enough cash to take care of your first few days.
    KJSpence likes this.

  3. #3
    Ca$h is KING!!

    Some 40+ years ago, after SWMBO & I got married, we went to UrrrK and didn't bother with Amex Traveller's Cheques...... I just carried some GBP 14,000 in the interior pockets of my trousers. And that was when 14,000 Quid was worth one hell of a lot more than it is in the UK these days.

    It, like us, traveled safely & secure whilst we visited relations in England, with the occasional replenishment of Quids from my inner pockets of the trousers into our wallets.

    It was safer than the small amounts of do$h than the shitty Harold Wilson and his gang of reprobates - who in 1967 - allowed me a total of 65 Quid when I left Britain to Hitch-hike around the world !

    Luckily, Singapore was then "in the Sterling Area" and I could once again plunder my nest-egg back in London and it paid for a far more comfortable ongoing travel !

    Personally, in YOUR case, I'd suggest that you carry Sterling, securely tucked away about your person such that any pick-pocket or thief would have a hard time "picking on you".

    Trebor likes this.

  4. #4

    Join Date
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    in recent trips to the UK I have noticed how easy it is to get around without carrying ANY significant amounts of cash. Any thing with a visa or mc network - credit or debit works just fine everywhere.

    Just be careful in pubs and restaurants (anywhere with a handheld terminal) that they charge they charge the correct amount and return your card.

    It is actually quite difficult to use cash in many places.

    KJSpence and aw451 like this.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    try the new ish standard chartered bank smart card. It doesn't charge a foreign transaction fee on your overseas card spending unlike most other HK credit cards.

    Alternatively, if you have a citigold bank acocount, stick some GBP into your multicurrency account, and set the debit card to using the GBP account as a default. Obviously remember to switch it back to HKD when you get back to HK.

    Be warned that most places don't accept cash, as Shri pointed out. London buses, in particular!

    KJSpence and Drunken Master like this.

  6. #6

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    If you are too fussed about the exchange rate use the hsbc global cash debit card.

    https://www.hsbc.com.hk/debit-cards/...rd-debit-card/

    alexdown likes this.

  7. #7

    Join Date
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    If you use a CC remember to ask them to charge it in GBP. If they charge in HKD you will get a crap exchange rate and additional fees.

    HK_Katherine likes this.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    6,123
    Quote Originally Posted by shri:
    in recent trips to the UK I have noticed how easy it is to get around without carrying ANY significant amounts of cash. Any thing with a visa or mc network - credit or debit works just fine everywhere.

    Just be careful in pubs and restaurants (anywhere with a handheld terminal) that they charge they charge the correct amount and return your card.

    It is actually quite difficult to use cash in many places.
    In some countries you can even buy a bus or tram ticket with a credit card ON the bus/tram

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Oct 2010
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    Just withdraw cash as needed at ATM and use the Mastercard to pay in shops, restaurants etc


  10. #10

    Join Date
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    Sai Kung
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheBrit:
    Just withdraw cash as needed at ATM and use the Mastercard to pay in shops, restaurants etc
    HSBC charge 20 HKD for a withdrawal. I know nothing about SCB but with HSBC you need to opt in online to allow cash withdrawals abroad. It hasn’t happened for a while but several years ago I had to redo this when in the UK. The process was instant. Maybe doesn’t apply to SCB, just one thing to double check if you go down this route.

    Sidenote, maybe it’s free for HSBC Premier but I’ve never upgraded (never seen the need).

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