ATM fee ripoff in Spain

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Kalikai
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ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by Kalikai »

I have pulled cash out of ATMs when traveling in Portugal, Japan, and several foreign countries. I also used the Fidelity debit card and was promptly reimbursed for ATM fees, no issues there.

However, I recently experienced a shocker when traveling in Spain for the first time. I was Ripped off by Banco Santander for a 8.5% FX markup fee. That’s on top of 7euro ATM fee.i wasn’t worried about the ATM fee, as I would be reimbursed by Fidelity. Although I tried declining the transaction, the ATM continued to dispense cash. And said fees were charged.

I don’t recall experiencing this before. The question I wanted to ask. Is it normal for a bank to charge such a high fx fee? Is that because of banking in Spain in particular? Has anyone experienced other countries or banks with such exhorbitant fx fees? Thanks.
madbrain
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by madbrain »

Kalikai wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 10:53 pm I have pulled cash out of ATMs when traveling in Portugal, Japan, and several foreign countries. I also used the Fidelity debit card and was promptly reimbursed for ATM fees, no issues there.

However, I recently experienced a shocker when traveling in Spain for the first time. I was Ripped off by Banco Santander for a 8.5% FX markup fee. That’s on top of 7euro ATM fee.i wasn’t worried about the ATM fee, as I would be reimbursed by Fidelity. Although I tried declining the transaction, the ATM continued to dispense cash. And said fees were charged.

I don’t recall experiencing this before. The question I wanted to ask. Is it normal for a bank to charge such a high fx fee? Is that because of banking in Spain in particular? Has anyone experienced other countries or banks with such exhorbitant fx fees? Thanks.
Did the ATM ask you if you wanted to be billed in the local currency or your home currency ?
If you picked the later, they do a very unfavorable conversion
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Vulcan
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by Vulcan »

You have to decline FX services if offered by a foreign ATM and let the transaction occur in local currency.
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the_wiki
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by the_wiki »

It’s a predatory ATM. You likely agreed to confusing terms that said you wanted them to do the currency conversion instead of your bank. And they charged you a huge fee. It’s designed to trick tourists.
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CardinalRule
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by CardinalRule »

I mentioned Santander in an earlier post. Even the big reputable banks try to trick you these days.

viewtopic.php?p=7362764&hilit=santander#p7362764
bikesandbeers
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by bikesandbeers »

I had this happen at an ATM in Mexico, I can’t remember the brand but it was from a major bank in the resort main lobby. I would bet it had an extra fee as a trap for tourists.
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Kalikai
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by Kalikai »

Thank you all for your feedback. It’s really predatory what all these banks do.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by bob60014 »

Kalikai wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 3:27 am Thank you all for your feedback. It’s really predatory what all these banks do.
Not ALL banks.
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HanSolo
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by HanSolo »

bob60014 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 7:35 am
Kalikai wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 3:27 am Thank you all for your feedback. It’s really predatory what all these banks do.
Not ALL banks.
Nobody said "all banks". "All these banks" obviously refers to the banks mentioned in the reports we've been hearing.

And it seems that such reports are increasingly frequent.
Kalikai wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 10:53 pm Although I tried declining the transaction, the ATM continued to dispense cash. And said fees were charged.
Sounds unethical, and possibly illegal. My guess is that the only recourse is law enforcement, but if you're a tourist, you won't be in-country long enough to pursue a court case, if that's where it lands. Perhaps banks are figuring out that they can take advantage of your inability to pursue a case against them.
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kramer
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by kramer »

If you are using a foreign card here in Mexico in most ATMs the last screen with buttons asks if you want the suggested bank exchange rate or not and you have to decline it or you get the much lower rate. It is (purposely) the last screen so if you make an error you can't go back or cancel. Santander Bank, a Spanish bank located throughout Mexico, is one of the worst offenders. Just a week ago I went on a walk with a couple of other fellow immigrants to Mexico and this issue came up and they both had been selecting the "Accept" button each time for years now and never understood why they had been getting less cash. Needless to say, they will never do that again.

For several weeks in September, 2023, HSBC ATMs throughout Mexico were charging a 7000 Mexican peso fee (about $420 US dollars) for withdrawals of any amount by foreign cards. This was obviously a software mistake as the usual fee would be around 70 Mexican pesos ($4.20). However, HSBC was denying all claims from US card holders for refunds. The latest I saw was that several months later many of those who were ripped off had joined in a group to try to take action. It happened to thousands of people in cities all over the country.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by 02nz »

It's not just Spain. I've seen this at ATMs all over Europe, it may be in countries outside of Europe as well. I've seen the markup exceed 10%.

PayPal does the same - when I make a purchase with a company outside the U.S. via PayPal, it defaults to doing the conversion for you. You have to click on "currency options" (not a very prominent link) to switch to being charged in the foreign currency. It then shows an exclamation mark that says "foreign transaction fees not included" or something to that effect to try to scare you into switching back to U.S. currency. The markup is about 5%. And you have to remember to switch to the foreign currency for every transaction.

It's very simple: ALWAYS choose to be charged in the local currency, whether purchasing with a credit card or withdrawing cash with your ATM card.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by cchrissyy »

yes and this warning isn't just for ATMs, but any time you use your card at a store or restaurant.
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MGBMartin
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by MGBMartin »

Sainsbury’s Bank ATMs at their grocery stores in the UK do this as well; ask my wife how I know.
Amazon UK also, and probably elsewhere, when I make purchases in the UK using my US card.
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ekid
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by ekid »

Maybe it's time to change the general advice to get foreign cash from foreign ATM's?
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by oilrig »

Unrelated, but one time I withdrew the equivalent of $50 USD in Turkish Lira from an HSBC ATM in Istanbul. Turns out the bill I received was fake, as no one would accept it when I tried to pay. I even went to an HSBC branch and they said sorry there was nothing they could do.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by WAROB »

ekid wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 11:21 am Maybe it's time to change the general advice to get foreign cash from foreign ATM's?
Overall I think withdrawing cash from a local ATM and selecting to withdrawal in the local currency is still the best option and a great deal compared to the old days of foreign currency exchange places, travelers checks etc. I usually withdrawal a few hundred euros and then spend cash at local spots though on my last trip to Europe a lot of places have come a long way with tap to pay and it’s easier to use a no forex fee credit card.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by Super Hans »

Recently in Istanbul, I went down a bank of ATMs before finding an acceptable one. The fifth one I tried was reasonable, just charging a small fee that Fidelity would refund. The others had various FX shenanigans or failed inexplicably. At least one (Ziraat?) didn't seem to let me decline DCC, but I still could cancel altogether.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by d0gerz »

I have a Santander account in the US so if I use my ATM card at Santander locations in Mexico there is no ATM fee. But yes you do need to watch out for the currency conversion they try to sneak in. Even as an account holder I’m not immune.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by miket29 »

Kalikai wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 3:27 am Thank you all for your feedback. It’s really predatory what all these banks do.
Some hotels, too. On a trip last year when we were checking out the clerk took the card reader, punched a few buttons, then handed it to me to tap my credit card. Turns out my pal had chosen currency conversion at a big markup, I never even had a choice.
Chuckles960
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by Chuckles960 »

Kalikai wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 3:27 am Thank you all for your feedback. It’s really predatory what all these banks do.
Agreed, but one can avoid it by knowing in advance what [not] to do. Many posts on this on BH.

The worse crime is when they make the dollar choice for you without your permission, which has happened to me when charging things to a CC. I may be wrong, but I am pretty sure the Santander ATM offered you a choice.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by exodusing »

MGBMartin wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 11:19 am Sainsbury’s Bank ATMs at their grocery stores in the UK do this as well; ask my wife how I know.
Amazon UK also, and probably elsewhere, when I make purchases in the UK using my US card.
Amazon UK and elsewhere has a setting so you can choose the currency to use. Change it to pounds or euros or whatever. Just remember to change it back to USD afterwards.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by MGBMartin »

exodusing wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 3:12 pm
MGBMartin wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 11:19 am Sainsbury’s Bank ATMs at their grocery stores in the UK do this as well; ask my wife how I know.
Amazon UK also, and probably elsewhere, when I make purchases in the UK using my US card.
Amazon UK and elsewhere has a setting so you can choose the currency to use. Change it to pounds or euros or whatever. Just remember to change it back to USD afterwards.
I always change it to let my card do the conversion and in US $ otherwise the exchange rate is not good; at least they show you what the rate will be if you let Amazon do the conversion.
Then you have to get past all the nag screens about Prime membership which is ON by default I believe even though I have US Prime.
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jgalt133
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by jgalt133 »

kramer wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 10:55 am If you are using a foreign card here in Mexico in most ATMs the last screen with buttons asks if you want the suggested bank exchange rate or not and you have to decline it or you get the much lower rate. It is (purposely) the last screen so if you make an error you can't go back or cancel. Santander Bank, a Spanish bank located throughout Mexico, is one of the worst offenders. Just a week ago I went on a walk with a couple of other fellow immigrants to Mexico and this issue came up and they both had been selecting the "Accept" button each time for years now and never understood why they had been getting less cash. Needless to say, they will never do that again.

For several weeks in September, 2023, HSBC ATMs throughout Mexico were charging a 7000 Mexican peso fee (about $420 US dollars) for withdrawals of any amount by foreign cards. This was obviously a software mistake as the usual fee would be around 70 Mexican pesos ($4.20). However, HSBC was denying all claims from US card holders for refunds. The latest I saw was that several months later many of those who were ripped off had joined in a group to try to take action. It happened to thousands of people in cities all over the country.
I withdrew from ATMs several times in Mexico. The first time I withdrew was a HSBC ATM at the airport.The very last screen told me that a 3000 peso withdrawal would be about $200 USD. I only recall seeing a button to "continue" (I was tired after a long flight). It made it sound like I either had to continue or cancel the transaction entirely and it did not occur to me that the screen was telling me that they would do the conversion and charge my card in USD. So, I hit continue since there was a line behind me waiting for their turn at the ATM. It turns out that I got charged ~6% foreign transaction fee. Fortunately it was a cheap lesson and I did not make that mistake again. Anytime an ATM (or point of sale system) says something about USD it's usually not for information purposes. They're trying to get you to agree to a conversion rate with fees that can be as high as 6-25%.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by talzara »

02nz wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 11:07 am PayPal does the same - when I make a purchase with a company outside the U.S. via PayPal, it defaults to doing the conversion for you. You have to click on "currency options" (not a very prominent link) to switch to being charged in the foreign currency. It then shows an exclamation mark that says "foreign transaction fees not included" or something to that effect to try to scare you into switching back to U.S. currency. The markup is about 5%. And you have to remember to switch to the foreign currency for every transaction.
You can use the legacy PayPal website to turn off DCC for all transactions charged to a credit card. It is very hard to find this setting since you have to figure out how to get to the legacy website first. It is not available on the Web 2.0 site.

When PayPal shuts down the legacy website, it will become impossible to change this setting, and you'll have to decline DCC one transaction at a time. It is unlikely the feature will be implemented in the Web 2.0 site. The recent trend in web design is to use dark patterns to trick the customer into paying more.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by talzara »

miket29 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 12:28 pm Some hotels, too. On a trip last year when we were checking out the clerk took the card reader, punched a few buttons, then handed it to me to tap my credit card. Turns out my pal had chosen currency conversion at a big markup, I never even had a choice.
Chuckles960 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 2:57 pm The worse crime is when they make the dollar choice for you without your permission, which has happened to me when charging things to a CC. I may be wrong, but I am pretty sure the Santander ATM offered you a choice.
You can initiate a dispute for involuntary DCC. Visa and Mastercard rules require the merchant to let the customer press the buttons on the card reader.

Some hotels bill the card that you used for the reservation, without letting you use the card reader. You can dispute these transactions, too. If you're asked to sign anything, write "I decline DCC" above your signature.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by yolointopants »

CardinalRule wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 11:31 pm I mentioned Santander in an earlier post. Even the big reputable banks try to trick you these days.

viewtopic.php?p=7362764&hilit=santander#p7362764
Lawd have mercy... please don't suggest Santander as a reputable bank.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by talzara »

jgalt133 wrote: Mon Apr 08, 2024 12:01 pm I withdrew from ATMs several times in Mexico. The first time I withdrew was a HSBC ATM at the airport.The very last screen told me that a 3000 peso withdrawal would be about $200 USD. I only recall seeing a button to "continue" (I was tired after a long flight). It made it sound like I either had to continue or cancel the transaction entirely and it did not occur to me that the screen was telling me that they would do the conversion and charge my card in USD. So, I hit continue since there was a line behind me waiting for their turn at the ATM. It turns out that I got charged ~6% foreign transaction fee. Fortunately it was a cheap lesson and I did not make that mistake again.
If only one button appears on the touchscreen, press the Cancel button on the keypad.

Sometimes this cancels the entire transaction, but sometimes it cancels only the DCC. You'll still get your cash without the DCC fee.

This is one of the dark patterns used by ATMs to trick customers into accepting DCC. It looks like you have no choice but to accept DCC, but you can still decline it. However, you have to know how to do it.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by WhiteMaxima »

Always use no foreign transaction credit card 1st. The use schwab ATM card to take local currency.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by 02nz »

talzara wrote: Tue Apr 09, 2024 11:12 am You can use the legacy PayPal website to turn off DCC for all transactions charged to a credit card. It is very hard to find this setting since you have to figure out how to get to the legacy website first. It is not available on the Web 2.0 site.
Thanks - do you happen to have a link to the PayPal legacy site?
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by talzara »

02nz wrote: Tue Apr 09, 2024 11:45 am Thanks - do you happen to have a link to the PayPal legacy site?
Unfortunately, I don't have a link. I remember I clicked around in settings until I found a setting that was still supported but not available in the Web 2.0 site. That took me to the legacy website.

It's like using the Vanguard website and using a feature that hasn't been implemented in the Web 2.0 site yet.

Unfortunately, you have to be a digital archaeologist now to use features that used to be easy to find.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by Chuckles960 »

talzara wrote: Tue Apr 09, 2024 11:21 am
miket29 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 12:28 pm Some hotels, too. On a trip last year when we were checking out the clerk took the card reader, punched a few buttons, then handed it to me to tap my credit card. Turns out my pal had chosen currency conversion at a big markup, I never even had a choice.
Chuckles960 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 2:57 pm The worse crime is when they make the dollar choice for you without your permission, which has happened to me when charging things to a CC. I may be wrong, but I am pretty sure the Santander ATM offered you a choice.
You can initiate a dispute for involuntary DCC. Visa and Mastercard rules require the merchant to let the customer press the buttons on the card reader.

Some hotels bill the card that you used for the reservation, without letting you use the card reader. You can dispute these transactions, too. If you're asked to sign anything, write "I decline DCC" above your signature.
Yeah, but I have reached the stage where my time and energy are in finite supply (wingèd chariot etc etc), so I would prefer that they not do this rather than use my right to dispute it.
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HanSolo
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by HanSolo »

talzara wrote: Tue Apr 09, 2024 11:24 am If only one button appears on the touchscreen, press the Cancel button on the keypad.

Sometimes this cancels the entire transaction, but sometimes it cancels only the DCC. You'll still get your cash without the DCC fee.
While the above may be good advice in general, it sounds like, according to the OP's report, the results may be variable:
Kalikai wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 10:53 pm Although I tried declining the transaction, the ATM continued to dispense cash. And said fees were charged.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by student »

talzara wrote: Tue Apr 09, 2024 11:21 am
miket29 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 12:28 pm Some hotels, too. On a trip last year when we were checking out the clerk took the card reader, punched a few buttons, then handed it to me to tap my credit card. Turns out my pal had chosen currency conversion at a big markup, I never even had a choice.
Chuckles960 wrote: Tue Apr 02, 2024 2:57 pm The worse crime is when they make the dollar choice for you without your permission, which has happened to me when charging things to a CC. I may be wrong, but I am pretty sure the Santander ATM offered you a choice.
You can initiate a dispute for involuntary DCC. Visa and Mastercard rules require the merchant to let the customer press the buttons on the card reader.

Some hotels bill the card that you used for the reservation, without letting you use the card reader. You can dispute these transactions, too. If you're asked to sign anything, write "I decline DCC" above your signature.
Thanks for the info.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by HanSolo »

talzara wrote: Tue Apr 09, 2024 11:21 am You can initiate a dispute for involuntary DCC. Visa and Mastercard rules require the merchant to let the customer press the buttons on the card reader.
I wonder how that works out for ATM cards without Visa or Mastercard logos on them (like my Citi ATM card).
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by talzara »

HanSolo wrote: Wed Apr 10, 2024 6:05 am While the above may be good advice in general, it sounds like, according to the OP's report, the results may be variable:
Kalikai wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 10:53 pm Although I tried declining the transaction, the ATM continued to dispense cash. And said fees were charged.
We don't know what button the OP pressed.

Many people don't think of the keypad when there's a touchscreen. They think they have to touch the screen.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by talzara »

HanSolo wrote: Wed Apr 10, 2024 6:26 am
talzara wrote: Tue Apr 09, 2024 11:21 am You can initiate a dispute for involuntary DCC. Visa and Mastercard rules require the merchant to let the customer press the buttons on the card reader.
I wonder how that works out for ATM cards without Visa or Mastercard logos on them (like my Citi ATM card).
PLUS is Visa.

Cirrus is Mastercard.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by RetiredAL »

HanSolo wrote: Wed Apr 10, 2024 6:26 am
talzara wrote: Tue Apr 09, 2024 11:21 am You can initiate a dispute for involuntary DCC. Visa and Mastercard rules require the merchant to let the customer press the buttons on the card reader.
I wonder how that works out for ATM cards without Visa or Mastercard logos on them (like my Citi ATM card).
Just got back from Costa Rica. My ATM card, not a debit card but on the Plus network, did not work at the bank which Visa-Plus website said was within their network. So I had to take cash advances from my Visa Credit Card. A PIN was required on the Visa Credit Card, so make sure it's set before you leave if your Visa Credit Card is the backup for cash.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by HanSolo »

talzara wrote: Wed Apr 10, 2024 9:08 pm
HanSolo wrote: Wed Apr 10, 2024 6:05 am While the above may be good advice in general, it sounds like, according to the OP's report, the results may be variable:
Kalikai wrote: Mon Apr 01, 2024 10:53 pm Although I tried declining the transaction, the ATM continued to dispense cash. And said fees were charged.
We don't know what button the OP pressed.

Many people don't think of the keypad when there's a touchscreen. They think they have to touch the screen.
Yes, I suppose that's true. But if the situation was that there was both a Cancel on the screen and a Cancel on the keypad, we also don't know whether the two would do the same thing or something different. Therefore, the expectation that "You'll still get your cash without the DCC fee" remains an unknown at any given ATM.
talzara wrote: Wed Apr 10, 2024 9:15 pm
HanSolo wrote: Wed Apr 10, 2024 6:26 am
talzara wrote: Tue Apr 09, 2024 11:21 am You can initiate a dispute for involuntary DCC. Visa and Mastercard rules require the merchant to let the customer press the buttons on the card reader.
I wonder how that works out for ATM cards without Visa or Mastercard logos on them (like my Citi ATM card).
PLUS is Visa.

Cirrus is Mastercard.
OK. I checked my Citi ATM card, it has the Cirrus logo.

In that case, the open question is whether anyone has ever successfully pursued such cases (including cases where there was an option to decline DCC, but without any visible indication that this can be done without declining the entire transaction, therefore misleading the customer). It would be interesting to know if that recourse is actually effective.

The other issue is how to initiate that dispute. If it involves me calling Citi, then I'm not confident of any favorable outcome, as Citi customer service is known to be incompetent on issues more complicated than checking my balance.
RetiredAL wrote: Wed Apr 10, 2024 10:10 pm Just got back from Costa Rica. My ATM card, not a debit card but on the Plus network, did not work at the bank which Visa-Plus website said was within their network. So I had to take cash advances from my Visa Credit Card. A PIN was required on the Visa Credit Card, so make sure it's set before you leave if your Visa Credit Card is the backup for cash.
Even if the location is listed, one should check to see if the matching "Plus" logo is on the ATM itself (as that location could have various machines with different capabilities). If no, then I'd expect it not to work (and it would seem odd to have "Visa" and not "Plus", but I guess anything's possible). If yes, and it didn't work, then it would seem that the machine was falsely marked as "Plus" (which the local bank employees probably won't care about correcting).
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by RetiredAL »

HanSolo wrote: Thu Apr 11, 2024 5:06 am
RetiredAL wrote: Wed Apr 10, 2024 10:10 pm Just got back from Costa Rica. My ATM card, not a debit card but on the Plus network, did not work at the bank which Visa-Plus website said was within their network. So I had to take cash advances from my Visa Credit Card. A PIN was required on the Visa Credit Card, so make sure it's set before you leave if your Visa Credit Card is the backup for cash.
Even if the location is listed, one should check to see if the matching "Plus" logo is on the ATM itself (as that location could have various machines with different capabilities). If no, then I'd expect it not to work (and it would seem odd to have "Visa" and not "Plus", but I guess anything's possible). If yes, and it didn't work, then it would seem that the machine was falsely marked as "Plus" (which the local bank employees probably won't care about correcting).
This was a major Costa Rica Bank with many locations. The ATM had the Plus logo.

My main point is be sure to have a backup methodology in place before you leave. The cash advance charges on the CC I used was not insane, so that CC was an OK backup.
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Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by rich126 »

RetiredAL wrote: Thu Apr 11, 2024 9:23 am
HanSolo wrote: Thu Apr 11, 2024 5:06 am
RetiredAL wrote: Wed Apr 10, 2024 10:10 pm Just got back from Costa Rica. My ATM card, not a debit card but on the Plus network, did not work at the bank which Visa-Plus website said was within their network. So I had to take cash advances from my Visa Credit Card. A PIN was required on the Visa Credit Card, so make sure it's set before you leave if your Visa Credit Card is the backup for cash.
Even if the location is listed, one should check to see if the matching "Plus" logo is on the ATM itself (as that location could have various machines with different capabilities). If no, then I'd expect it not to work (and it would seem odd to have "Visa" and not "Plus", but I guess anything's possible). If yes, and it didn't work, then it would seem that the machine was falsely marked as "Plus" (which the local bank employees probably won't care about correcting).
This was a major Costa Rica Bank with many locations. The ATM had the Plus logo.

My main point is be sure to have a backup methodology in place before you leave. The cash advance charges on the CC I used was not insane, so that CC was an OK backup.
I'm constantly amazed at how many people only have 1 credit card and/or ATM/debit card. I've had various issues over the decades where cards were "frozen" due to potential fraud and I've always had multiple backups where it was no problem. Having multiple ATM cards is very easy especially with Schwab and Fidelity providing them and having multiple cards is easy even if you only want cards with no annual fees.

You can't prepare for every emergency but stuff like this is easy.
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BoatyMcB
Posts: 23
Joined: Sun Mar 05, 2023 1:50 pm

Re: ATM fee ripoff in Spain

Post by BoatyMcB »

I have recently been getting some cash ahead of time from Bank of America. Being a "Platinum Plus" member, I get free FedEx delivery and a 1 or 2% discount on the exchange rate, which is decent, I believe.

For an upcoming trip, I got $150 worth of Turkish Lira for airport cab fare and incidentals. I am always worried that they will give me very large bills that are hard to get change for, so I checked the "small bills" box on the on-line request. I received a thick stack of ninety 50-Lira notes, each worth about $1.66. :shock: That works, I guess.
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