Taking money to Greece

By | Category: Travel tips & opinions

BeatTheBrochure-MoneyGuide-Euros-500x350For those holidaying in Greece this year, the announcement over the weekend that ATM’s would restrict pay-outs to €60 per day from this Tuesday has confused some visitors.

This amount applies only to people with cards issued by Greek banks. If you card is issued by a non-Greek bank then you can still draw the maximum amount that your card provider says. As it stands at the time of publication, the bank closures will last until July 6th.

The issue may well be whether there is enough money stocked in that particular ATM so that you can withdraw as much as you wish.

As Just about Travel wrote last week, the answer is that you take enough cash with you to cover yourselves in case ATM’s run out of cash.

Any holidaymaker is familiar with the situation that when a bill comes, the credit card machine is broken and restaurant, café and shop can only take cash. This is never told to you before you start buying or sit down, only after you have eaten. It would be surprising if this didn’t become more widespread in Greece as people try to make and hold onto their money as long as the current uncertainty exists.

Centtrip, the world’s first e-money account, has calculated that each UK visitor to Greece spent around £613.70 per trip in 2014. If that can be believed it is a lot of cash to have to carry as a standby. Their recommendation is to take enough hard cash with you. Our advice is that if you do, ration yourself to a set amount a day so that the money lasts until you return. British consuls are not in place to act as your bankers to issue money if you run out so don’t expect assistance from them except in extreme circumstances.

Your tour operator, if you have booked a package, may well provide a cash service so talk to them before you go to set what they are doing to help.

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