Greece – holiday money tips

Posted by Barry Stamp in Personal Finance on 2 July 2015 - Barry is Managing Director at checkmyfile

150,000 of us take off to Greece every week at the moment and many will be worried about how they will be affected by the ongoing crisis. As Greece goes into arrears with the IMF and the Greek Government looks to a hurried referendum to get a mandate from the long-suffering Greeks as to whether to stay in the Eurozone, or even to leave the Common Market, the question most asked is what should tourists do about taking holiday money to Greece?

The first thing to understand is that the Euro itself will remain as a welcome currency, no matter what happens. Greek nationals are not able to withdraw more than €60 per day, so cash is king. Tourists are not limited to the amount they can withdraw (subject to the limits imposed by card companies) but there is no guarantee that cash machines will be filled at all times.

Take enough Euros as you are comfortable to carry, bearing in mind that the limits for loss or theft of cash on your travel insurance policy are small – maybe as low as £200 – although some insurers have increased limits temporarily for travellers to Greece. Check with your own insurer for details.

When buying cash, rates are a little volatile, so if there is a Moneycorp branch at the airport you are flying from, consider using them to pick up your Euros at the airport. Moneycorp will give you the rate that applies when you buy, or when you fly, whichever is the best from your point of view.

Credit cards are likely to be accepted widely, but just not as welcome as Euros. Use a card that doesn’t charge for overseas payments – the Post Office Credit Card is our best buy for this.

Also take a prepaid currency card such as the FairFX card –which you can load up with cash as and when, so that you have another means of paying.

Remember that the Greeks want you to visit Greece, want you to spend, and will do all they can to encourage you to have an enjoyable holiday and return again.

Have a great holiday.

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