How to Manage with Money in Mexico – The Complete Guide
Many travelers debate a lot about the best way to handle money on a trip to Mexico. Questions like – “Which ticket did you take?” “How much cash should you bring?” “Is it better in dollars or euros?” “How much do you pay for the commissions?” – very common questions among tourists before they arrive in Mexico.
How much should the budget be in Mexico?
Our recommendation, take with you between $1000-$1500 in cash which will serve you during the trip and will allow you a smooth process without having to get involved with conversions and withdrawals from the card. Once you’ve landed in Mexico, go to one of the nearest money changers’ stands and make the conversion.
Where do you exchange money in Mexico?
The recommendation is always to exchange at regulated places (Casa de Cambio), or at bank branches. You can already see at the entrance the exchange rate of the representative dollar or the euro against the Mexican peso.
Cash conversion fees in Mexico:
The cheapest fees you will pay for currency exchange will be in cash. That’s why it’s important to remember to bring dollars or euros. Two reasons:
1. In Mexico there is no conversion of weight money into dollars or vice versa.
2. It is cheaper to buy Mexican pesos than dollars or euros.
You will always do the conversion at an official money changer’s store and not through a private person. You may pay a little more, but that way you will know that your money is safe.
The daily dollar/euro conversion rate is always displayed at the entrance to the store.
Important points to remember:
- If this is your first time in Mexico, you will need to open a new user account. The same user will appear in any regulated place where you want to convert. For those converting for the first time, the rate will be more expensive than what is shown on the board (not by much). You can then convert at the normal rate
- No conversion can be made in regulated places of more than $1500 per month. Therefore, prepare accordingly and if there are places where you know you can pay in dollars, it is better to pay in dollars and keep the Mexican pesos.
Using a credit card in Mexico:
When you want to use your credit card to perform operations in Mexico, there are two options:
1. Withdrawing cash from an ATM.
2. Payment by swiping the card itself.
When you withdraw Mexican pesos through an ATM, it then converts a dollar to a peso. Therefore, the recommended thing is, first of all, before your trip to Mexico, you should open an account and deposit some money that you will have for the trip. That way, with every withdrawal you make, one conversion operation will be performed, not two.
Note that your credit card is associated with the dollar account! All these actions can be performed quite simply by talking to a banker.
Credit card withdrawal fees in Mexico:
When withdrawing cash from an ATM, you will pay between 2-4 dollars for each withdrawal.
There is also the conversion fee from the currency you have withdrawn to your account as already mentioned.
The conversion fee from dollars or euros varies between 1.5% – 2.5% of the withdrawal amount.
Several important points to remember:
- To avoid theft – it is always recommended to withdraw money only at ATMs located near banks because other ATMs can copy your info.
- Always take two credit cards with you – one will be in your wallet and you will mainly use it, and the other will be for backup in your backpack/suitcase (hidden). So if something happens to the main card – it gets swallowed by the machine, stolen, damaged or lost – you will have another option to withdraw money and continue traveling.
Important points to remember:
- First, you need to decide on the type of currency – whether it is a visa charged in euros or dollars.
- A fee of 0.8% of the amount is paid for all charges except the first charge.
- While withdrawing cash at the ATM, you will pay $4 for each withdrawal.
- And also there are fees for checking account status, refusal of an ATM to withdraw money, and more.
- Making a transaction or withdrawal in a currency other than dollars or euros (according to the type of card) will be charged a 2.5% fee.
Check the exchange rate:
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