I just got off the phone with Bank of America and I have some decent options for accessing my limited amounts of money while I'm abroad.
The bad ideas:
1. I can use any atm in Europe. However, I will have to pay a $5 fee each time I use the atm plus whatever fee that atm charges.
So, pay 5 to 10 dollars each time I use an atm PLUS the currency conversion fee? No thank you!
2. Only make purchases with my credit/debit card. But, on each purchase there will be a 3% fee on each and every purchase.
Add an additional 3 percent onto my budget, I definitely can't handle this option either.
3. James Bond style I handcuff a metal suitcase onto my wrist and keep all of my money for 4 months traveling on my body at all time in order to avoid crazy bank fees.
This definitely sounds like the best idea. Dangerous, heavy, and easy to rob? I love it!
The decent ideas:
1. Transfer the money to a european bank where I can access my money in Euros from multiple bank locations.
The problem with this idea is that I would have to transfer the money from my current account here and I could lose money on the bank transfer fee.
The best option (I think, I hope):
1. Bank of America has association with banks in France, England, Germany, and Italy where I can make withdrawals without any penalties.
The only problem is that I'm going to Spain where BOA doesn't have any banks where I can make withdrawals without penalties.
But maybe I can take enough cash or travelers checks to Spain? Spain is at the end of itinerary so I have time to figure it all out.
Right now I'm just trying to save save save in these last 2 weeks before I leave. I'm babysitting several times a week; making meals at home out of all of the random supplies in the pantry and the freezer; and selling some old clothes, books, and dvds.
It's 2 very busy weeks until I leave!