Search found 63 matches

by rcsracing
Sun Mar 04, 2018 3:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Minimizing costs of a medical procedure (Colonoscopy)]
Replies: 87
Views: 7503

Re: [Minimizing costs of a medical procedure (Colonoscopy)]

As an expat in Slovakia, I'm exposed to the healthcare norms of Europe. Due to high risk for colon cancer with family history, I need to get one every 5 years well below the normal age. I just had one done in January and my American-trained (but Slovak nationality) doctor asked me to consider the pr...
by rcsracing
Wed Jun 28, 2017 9:15 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Rental home and ex-pat ?
Replies: 14
Views: 1759

Re: Rental home and ex-pat ?

One area to investigate are the employer's expatriate policies. I'm an expat today that didn't have any rentals when I began the program a few years ago. The tax equalization policy that we have (where the company calculates a theoretical "as-if" tax return if I was living in my home state) sets a l...
by rcsracing
Wed Feb 08, 2017 4:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: London & Prague recommendations
Replies: 15
Views: 1671

Re: London & Prague recommendations

I can't help with London, but I've been to Prague. You can do most of the main stuff by foot if you're anywhere near the old town. Things to see - - Old Town Square - one of my favorite town squares in Europe so far. Jan Hus memorial, astronomical clock. Tyn church, etc. - Charles Bridge - a few min...
by rcsracing
Fri Feb 03, 2017 3:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Expat Forums or Advice on Expat Package?
Replies: 10
Views: 1819

Re: Best Expat Forums or Advice on Expat Package?

Just to give a perspective - I'm an expat in Slovakia for a US based company. The expat package is pretty standard for all employees here, but it has been reduced over the past few years. 1 - Housing - included with TV/phone/other utilities, leased by the company. Furnished, repairs are covered. I h...
by rcsracing
Wed Jan 25, 2017 1:09 pm
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: HAPPY 93RD BIRTHDAY, TAYLOR!
Replies: 199
Views: 13208

Re: HAPPY 93RD BIRTHDAY, TAYLOR!

Happy birthday and thank you for all that you do!
by rcsracing
Thu Jan 12, 2017 2:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA eligible for January only
Replies: 1
Views: 298

Re: HSA eligible for January only

Yes, at least that is how I understand. In 2015 I became an expat and my insurnace plan changed effective August 1st of that year with no more HSA.

Professional tax prep (big 4 firm) and I was eligible for 7/12 of the contribution. I had to withdraw the excess.
by rcsracing
Fri Jan 06, 2017 9:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: ATM card for overseas travel
Replies: 25
Views: 2148

Re: ATM card for overseas travel

PNC for balances over $5k (not sure what the account tier is called). They've been more friendly as a long term expat (3+ years) than Fidelity was when setting it up. High limits, reimbursed fees and they allowed me to set a long term travel notification (3 years), compared to the three months that ...
by rcsracing
Wed Jan 04, 2017 10:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mega Backdoor Roth IRA Through Fidelity
Replies: 19
Views: 4274

Re: Mega Backdoor Roth IRA Through Fidelity

I have a Fidelity 401k that allows it.

1) First, "In-service withdrawals" are in the summary plan description.
2) Second, after tax (non-Roth) contributions are allowed.
by rcsracing
Fri Dec 02, 2016 11:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: CBP (INS) Global Entry program worth it?
Replies: 65
Views: 5338

Re: CBP (INS) Global Entry program worth it?

For what it's worth, I did my interview a few years ago in Dulles. I think it lasted 15 minutes.
by rcsracing
Mon Nov 14, 2016 7:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to give a young traveller in France some "walking-around money?"
Replies: 25
Views: 3078

Re: How to give a young traveller in France some "walking-around money?"

As a current expat in EU , I recommend cash + ATM withdrawal. That'll be the lowest fee overall. To the comments about having the right notes - just have a few $20 USD to carry over until the first withdrawal on EU soil. Somebody would take that or VISA/MasterCard in a pinch. But the first ATM visit...
by rcsracing
Sat Nov 12, 2016 4:38 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Mark your calendar for year-end fund distributions
Replies: 20
Views: 3707

Re: Mark your calendar for year-end fund distributions

This year's distributions for me (Fidelity, Total Stock and Total Int'l Stock) will several times bigger than last year due to increased savings into my taxable account. Are there any actions here for me? I know that some say to avoid buying the distribution and understand the plusses and minuses of...
by rcsracing
Thu Nov 03, 2016 10:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Chase Sapphire Reserve
Replies: 216
Views: 36429

Re: Chase Sapphire Reserve

I applied a couple of days ago and my application is "under consideration". I checked Credit Karma before applying and it only showed 3 new cards in the last 2 years. My credit score is in the low 800's. Can anyone venture a guess as to whether or not I'll be approved? Similar process to mine. A fe...
by rcsracing
Wed Nov 02, 2016 3:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Chase Sapphire Reserve: Too good to be (completely) true
Replies: 186
Views: 34569

Re: Chase Sapphire Reserve: Too good to be (completely) true

I'm an expat in eastern EU and just got my Reserve card a couple weeks ago. I immediately signed up for the Priority Pass Select. It got here last Friday, just before a 4 day trip to Rome. 3 visits to lounges during the trip (long layovers in Prague). No hassle. Combined with the travel credit, I'll...
by rcsracing
Wed Nov 02, 2016 12:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Chase Sapphire Reserve
Replies: 216
Views: 36429

Re: Chase Sapphire Reserve

As an expat in Europe, I have an opportunity to travel a bit on weekends. I just received the Reserve card about 10 days ago, and immediately applied online for the Priority Pass (lounge access). I used it several times for a 4 day trip, no hassles at all. Financially, I'll make out fine for getting...
by rcsracing
Sun Oct 09, 2016 3:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Most reliable/safe/bulletproof way to get cash overseas
Replies: 30
Views: 3643

Re: Most reliable/safe/bulletproof way to get cash overseas

I've been an expat in Europe for just over a year. Fidelity was good for travel, but not as an expat. I use PNC primarily, with one of their checking account tiers that has a 5k monthly average minimum balance. They've been great and even modified my account so that I don't have to call in every 3 m...
by rcsracing
Wed Jul 06, 2016 4:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a Fifth Wheel-Help
Replies: 34
Views: 4079

Re: Buying a Fifth Wheel-Help

I think a good first step is to do some rentals. I'm not sure if there as many rental options for a 5th wheel setup, but that's what you need to do first. Just like a car, you'll take a massive depreciation hit on day 1. But expect some issues if it's a few years old. Lots of questions to answer fir...
by rcsracing
Fri Jul 01, 2016 3:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Safe, affordable European cities to travel?
Replies: 38
Views: 4787

Re: Safe, affordable European cities to travel?

If you're going during peak tourist season, expect bigger crowds and slightly higher prices. That season will be late May - late August. As some have already said, tourist type cities will handle English just fine. It's always good to learn Hello, goodbye, please, and thank you from a guidebook or s...
by rcsracing
Thu May 26, 2016 3:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: series/ movies filmed in your home town?
Replies: 87
Views: 5207

Re: series/ movies filmed in your home town?

The current/final season 4 of Banshee, one of the Cinemax produced shows) was filmed in my previous hometown. They were wrapping up filming the same weekend that I left for my expat assignment.

-Ricky
by rcsracing
Tue Apr 26, 2016 8:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will Chip + Sign CC work in Europe?
Replies: 27
Views: 3038

Re: Will Chip + Sign CC work in Europe?

Excellent advice, thank you. Is Austria the same way? Not in my experience in Vienna. But it's always wise to have some cash on you. My first try of using my Barclays Arrival+ card after I moved here to Eastern Europe was a failure in the grocery story. Something wasn't right on the travel indicato...
by rcsracing
Sun Apr 24, 2016 2:11 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: how do people keep AA constant with ongoing contributions?
Replies: 23
Views: 2740

Re: how do people keep AA constant with ongoing contributions?

I'm in a similar boat. My taxable contributions today outweigh tax-advantaged additions. So as I add more stocks into the taxable, I need to adjust the tax advantaged. For the taxable additions, I split this into my normal US/Intl allocation, so this addition doesn't move that ratio. Then twice a ye...
by rcsracing
Mon Apr 11, 2016 7:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to use iPhone 5S in Europe on wifi only?
Replies: 28
Views: 3163

Re: How to use iPhone 5S in Europe on wifi only?

Yes, and my iPhone 5S from Verizon was already unlocked (as with most newer phones). Easy store visit for that (Free).
by rcsracing
Mon Apr 11, 2016 12:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to use iPhone 5S in Europe on wifi only?
Replies: 28
Views: 3163

Re: How to use iPhone 5S in Europe on wifi only?

Check out WhatsApp for text replacement. It works over the data network (Wifi or cell), but this is not a true text message. The recipient needs to be using WhatsApp as well. As an expat, I use it frequently to reach out to friends in the U.S. Like the others said, either pull the SIM card or turn o...
by rcsracing
Fri Apr 08, 2016 7:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Which bank for ATM use outside the US?
Replies: 26
Views: 2372

Re: Which bank for ATM use outside the US?

Fidelity. Never have had any issues with international use. That was my experience as well. There T&C's were updated last year about longer term international stays. For a vacation, no problem. As an expat, the wording certainly applied to me. So I do my banking over here through PNC, which had no ...
by rcsracing
Thu Mar 10, 2016 10:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to get a real Chip and Pin card?
Replies: 108
Views: 30773

Re: How to get a real Chip and Pin card?

The "default" to Chip+Signature hasn't been a big issue since I've lived over here, it just makes it a bit more challenging if the clerk hasn't worked with signature much.

For all of the automated kiosk type stuff, the card has worked with my PIN (and sometimes not even that if it was a low amount).
by rcsracing
Wed Mar 09, 2016 1:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to get a real Chip and Pin card?
Replies: 108
Views: 30773

Re: How to get a real Chip and Pin card?

I'm in Europe as an expat for the next few years. I have the Barclays Arrival+ card. It's chip+signature & chip+pin, with signature as the first tier. That means when I go the grocery store and insert my card, the machine prints out a signature slip. The store system allows it, but the clerks usuall...
by rcsracing
Tue Mar 08, 2016 11:07 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Woohoo - we got over $50k!
Replies: 28
Views: 5741

Re: Woohoo - we got over $50k!

Congratulations! Here's to hoping the next 50k comes even faster than the first! :sharebeer
by rcsracing
Sat Feb 27, 2016 9:43 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Which brokers are friendly to expats?
Replies: 29
Views: 7575

Re: Which brokers are friendly to expats?

Data point for fido: I moved from the U.S. to Europe more than a year ago. I maintained my accounts with fido, and use a U.S. address. I log in frequently without using a VPN or other service. I have purchased mutual funds without issue. Do you use their cash management account for ATM withdrawals?...
by rcsracing
Sun Jan 31, 2016 9:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacing timing belt on 2009 Accord(Do it or sell?)
Replies: 83
Views: 25357

Re: Replacing timing belt on 2009 Accord(Do it or sell?)

Check your owner's manual from Honda. I think, but could be mistaken, that most of these engines are listed at 7 years/105k miles for timing belt/water pump. You're probably 8-10 months early, just from time, but very safe on mileage. So close on one factor, very safe on the other. If it were me (an...
by rcsracing
Tue Jan 26, 2016 2:29 am
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: Happy Birthday Taylor!
Replies: 87
Views: 7391

Re: Happy Birthday Taylor!

Happy belated birthday, Taylor! While I'm not a frequent poster, your specific advice to me a few years ago (same as the advise that you always give) of striving for a low cost, simple portfolio while resisting the urge to tinker has changed my financial future. Thank you very much for all of your a...
by rcsracing
Sat Jan 23, 2016 11:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Resume tips: Leadership/Management levels
Replies: 6
Views: 1368

Re: Resume tips: Leadership/Management levels

One of the keys at that level is business challenges matched with solutions, preferably tied with numbers. "Led paper-less workplace initiative, removing 6 million pages annually yielding $250,000 in savings". To me, anyone can "build roadmaps" and "create strategies". At this level, you'll begin to...
by rcsracing
Thu Jan 07, 2016 4:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fidelity Cash Management Account--any real life experience you can share?
Replies: 31
Views: 7401

Re: Fidelity Cash Management Account--any real life experience you can share?

I used it for several years with no issue. However, I received a notice about foreign living from Fidelity in late July. Just a few weeks before I was moving to Slovakia for an expat assignment. The letter basically said that the Fidelity accounts were for US residents, and if Fidelity suspected tha...
by rcsracing
Sat Dec 05, 2015 2:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any opinions on a ventless dryer?
Replies: 16
Views: 2817

Re: Any opinions on a ventless dryer?

I have a Bosch vent-less here at my flat in Slovakia. The hot air is run through an internal condenser. The water collects into a tray/tank that can be easily pulled out and emptied into a sink. The previous dryer, which had repair issues and was replaced, had an accessory kit to plumb the condenser...
by rcsracing
Sun Nov 29, 2015 12:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New expat - Backdoor/Mega Backdoor and Portfolio Update
Replies: 9
Views: 897

Re: New expat - Backdoor/Mega Backdoor and Portfolio Update

Wow. That was definitely helpful. Yes, my US income tax will show a very large number for the reasons that you mentioned. I am single, so the only way under my current salary to get to a Roth is through one of the backdoors. It's appealing due to increased tax advantaged (tax free in this case) spac...
by rcsracing
Sun Nov 29, 2015 11:48 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New expat - Backdoor/Mega Backdoor and Portfolio Update
Replies: 9
Views: 897

Re: New expat - Backdoor/Mega Backdoor and Portfolio Update

I won't see them face to face to taxes. I will reach out to them in the coming weeks to see if we can discuss the 401k in service -> IRA -> Roth conversions. I know other people at my company do this type of conversion every year, but I'm not sure if anyone has done it as an expat. For the records u...
by rcsracing
Sun Nov 29, 2015 10:21 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New expat - Backdoor/Mega Backdoor and Portfolio Update
Replies: 9
Views: 897

Re: New expat - Backdoor/Mega Backdoor and Portfolio Update

Thanks. Phone calls I can handle through a US VOiP phone. Paperwork - I'll retain all of the info/records, but my income taxes will be completed by one of the big firms. I'll be sure to make sure it's clear to them. No other retirement accounts outside of my current 401k (I've rolled over each time ...
by rcsracing
Sun Nov 29, 2015 9:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Giving out VIN on old car for sale?
Replies: 8
Views: 1476

Re: Giving out VIN on old car for sale?

I don't see any harm in it. If you had listed it on Autotrader, you can (not sure if "must") share the VIN on there as well. If anyone looks at your car in person, they can get the VIN from the tag on the drivers side , in the bottom corner of the windshield.

I'd share it.

-Ricky
by rcsracing
Sun Nov 29, 2015 8:17 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New expat - Backdoor/Mega Backdoor and Portfolio Update
Replies: 9
Views: 897

New expat - Backdoor/Mega Backdoor and Portfolio Update

First, many thanks to the members of this board that provide help, especially to the new members. 3 years ago, I asked for some portfolio help. https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=103864 Thankfully, I listened and was able to construct a portfolio that was simple and inexpensive, wh...
by rcsracing
Sun Nov 22, 2015 2:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: best way t o purchase euros
Replies: 16
Views: 1872

Re: best way t o purchase euros

I relocated to Eastern Europe in August for a few years as an expat, so I have a little bit of first hand experience. My bank account is in the US (PNC), and my paycheck is deposited there in USD. 1) Credit cards - many places accept them. Many of those can/will handle cards without a chip (For exam...
by rcsracing
Thu Sep 10, 2015 5:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Efficiency" initiative at work
Replies: 3
Views: 804

Re: "Efficiency" initiative at work

I've been through something similar in the last few years. I decided to stay put and see how things worked out. For peace of mind, I did refresh my resume and make sure that my emergency fund was adequate. For me, once I start the job hunt, I tend to get focused on that and probably find more reason...
by rcsracing
Thu Sep 10, 2015 3:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good used tow vehicle (large SUV) for cheap?
Replies: 13
Views: 2398

Re: Good used tow vehicle (large SUV) for cheap?

Just a note, as a previous <07 GM truck owner with rusted lines. They can be replaced for not a terrible amount of money. I think my local shop charged me $3-400 to replace all of the lines with "custom bent" lines instead of OEM branded pre-bent ones. I had one rust out and decided to future-proof ...
by rcsracing
Tue Aug 18, 2015 12:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Chip and pin credit cards?
Replies: 28
Views: 3819

Re: Chip and signature in Europe?

Will chip and signature cards work in the eurozone? -jalbert As a current expat (Day #8 in Slovakia :happy ), the C&S cards will work in most places. This includes restaurants, clubs/bars, and inside gas/petrol stations. However, they won't work in automated areas such as train terminal kiosks. For...
by rcsracing
Thu Mar 05, 2015 12:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Quick help: International credit card fees
Replies: 8
Views: 741

Re: Quick help: International credit card fees

I travel to EU frequently for work and may take a future expat role there in the next few months. The previous favorite of our expat crowd was the Chase Sapphire card. However, that's "just" chip+signature. I got the Barclays Arrival Plus mastercard. Chip+PIN, which is a bit easier to deal with for ...
by rcsracing
Mon Feb 16, 2015 2:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: University of Phoenix
Replies: 20
Views: 3205

Re: University of Phoenix

I"m a current student at UOP, as a "non-traditional" working adult. I'm also in a mid-level management role at a large Megacorp. I do value work as a non-traditional student. It's not a walk in the park to balance work, school, and life. However, I give little value to which particular school someon...
by rcsracing
Sun Oct 13, 2013 12:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Potential Employer delays 401(k) for one year
Replies: 20
Views: 2154

Re: Potential Employer delays 401(k) for one year

Would the calendar year timing of this potential move change the numbers? For example, switching over to the new employer in November of this year. You'd have 10 months of 401k with your current employer. In November of 2014, you're now 401k eligible and ramp up to max contributions? This may not ge...
by rcsracing
Sun Mar 03, 2013 2:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: leather vs cloth car seats
Replies: 32
Views: 6460

Re: leather vs cloth car seats

BMW has "leatherette" fake leather on at least some of the 3-series. It's been fine in hot weather, but I have slightly tinted windows and it's only "Pennsylvania hot" getting around 90* F.

FWIW, some of the new Ford F150s include A/C into the front leather seats - works amazing.
by rcsracing
Sun Mar 03, 2013 7:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fidelity Cash Management account
Replies: 19
Views: 11676

Re: Fidelity Cash Management account

(1) Does it play well with Quicken? (2) Easy to transfer money to other savings account (ING, AMEX, etc)? (3) Any problems with scanning in bigger checks (30k+)? From my experience - 1) I don't use Quicken, but do use Mint. Works just fine in Mint (owned by Intuit, who owns Quicken). 2) Here's the ...
by rcsracing
Sat Feb 02, 2013 11:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Which sector would likely fare the best in recovery?
Replies: 8
Views: 776

Re: Which sector would likely fare the best in recovery?

Steel? Does the United States still make steel? They always used to show us "educational" films in school, 16 mm black and white, of steel being produced, with portentous announcing and distorted "Things to Come" music in the background. I thought steel went out with fixed stock commissions, airpla...
by rcsracing
Sun Jan 13, 2013 2:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best way to purchase gold and silver
Replies: 10
Views: 1405

Re: Best way to purchase gold and silver

About 4 years back, I bought some stuff from APMEX. I compared costs between the various options to try to get as close to spot as I could while staying within my budget.

Dealing with them was easy.
by rcsracing
Sun Jan 06, 2013 7:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V
Replies: 3372
Views: 1489685

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

I just read "The Wealthy Barber" by David Chilton after a recommendation by a friend. Easy, quick read that I'll pass on to a future Boglehead.
by rcsracing
Fri Jan 04, 2013 6:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any change to your 2013 paycheck?
Replies: 68
Views: 6516

Re: Any change to your 2013 paycheck?

I can't find the reference, but I believe payroll departments were given a reprieve from rushing to implement. EIther by 1/31 or 2/28 I believe, which means for those of you not seeing changes yet, you will see them retroactive in the future.