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Money Matters: ATM - CC - Cash

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Chickadee
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Re: ATM Questions

Unread postby Chickadee » Wed Aug 07, 2013 12:36 pm

Hi LeftyLynn,

We travel to SA from the States also and always order money before we leave. You can google companies for it or go through your bank. That way you can specify the denominations you would like (smaller denoms, larger OK for purchase of gasoline.) I typically don't order anything larger than a 500.

You know you will need money, so why wait until you get there? If you are like me, you will want to get out of the airport as soon as possible. If you have your money with you, that is one less stop you need to make when you are tired after an ~16 hour flight and anxious to find your first leopard!!

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Re: ATM Questions

Unread postby LeftyLynn » Wed Aug 07, 2013 7:56 pm

Thanks for the replies.

I definitely don't plan to carry a lot of cash.
I just want to make sure we have enough for the tolls, gas and misc. small items (ice cream :P ).

@ Chickadee - Thanks for suggesting that I should purchase currency ahead of time.
I'm sure the exchange rate won't be as good as the ATM.
As you mentioned it will save time at the airport, which will help since we're already on a tight schedule.
Also, I won't have to worry about there being a max amount that the ATM allows for withdrawl.
Here in the US it's common that ATMs have a max of $200 USD.
Did you mean that you purchase $500 USD worth of Rands?
I just wonder if that's what you meant rather than a 500 rand bill.
$500 USD was exactly the amount of cash that I'm planning to obtain in rands.

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Re: ATM Questions

Unread postby LeftyLynn » Wed Aug 07, 2013 9:24 pm

Crested Val wrote:HI LeftyLynn, just to let you know, almost all the main camps now take credit cards for gas, and most garages outside the park as well, though there are still some that don't!!!

Hope you have a wonderful time. :thumbs_up:


Thanks for this very helpful piece of information! In that case I won't need much cash at all, since I do prefer to use credit cards as much as possible when traveling.

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lion queen
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Re: Money Matters: ATM - CC - Cash

Unread postby lion queen » Thu Aug 08, 2013 7:53 am

Last month we had four days in the park without cellphone connection, which meant that the credit card facilities in the shops did not work and we had to pay every thing with cash. $500 should be more than enough to cover for that inconvenience!!

Just keep that in mind when running down to the shop and not taking cash with. We only saw the sign once we got to the pay point!!
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Re: Money Matters: ATM - CC - Cash

Unread postby suebfly » Thu Aug 08, 2013 12:43 pm

DEFINATELY have more cash than you think you will need. I have NEVER been to Kruger when there has not been a problem at least once & usually many times when the card machines are not working especially at the Petrol pumps. If there is a problem at the pump or at the shop & you do not have cash there is nothing you can do and it is a tad difficult if it is petrol you cannot buy

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Re: Money Matters: ATM - CC - Cash

Unread postby bshepardson03 » Fri Aug 16, 2013 5:31 pm

To my countryman,

In answer to your question on how much can you take out of the ATM at the airport the answer is 2,000R per transaction.
You can though re-enter your card for a second or third 2,000.
You will be charged a transaction fee each time.
Typically between 3 and 5 dollars.
I agree with some one else on this topic who said have more than you need.
While it is true that credit cards are widely accepted, Gas will use up your funds quickly and there are other times that cash is more convenient. we typically spend 3 to 400 Rand per day in the park just for Gas.
Also as previously stated Skukuza is the only really reliable spot in the park to get funds.
We once drove to L.S and it was out of cash, then had to drive to Skukuza from Satara. Not fun.
While we have never had a problem, you should exercise the same caution as you would at home.
I never let anyone push my cart at the airport, but if you decide to do this negotiate the rate first.
Also we tend to tip the guys in the car parks at markets etc.. 10 rand or so to look after our car when shopping.
It's cheep insurance.
his will typically be a guy with a vest and a billy club.
Although I have seen some with shotguns.
Once again my wife and I have visited the park 8 times now and never had any problems. Enjoy.

BTW I've found that getting Rands from the bank prior to the trip had a very poor exchange rate.
But it does give you walking around money.
Now we just keep whatever we have left over for the next trip.
Why loose money with the exchange twice.

One last thing, a tip to the guy filling your tank and washing your windshield is expected.
These guys can be helpful with sighting tips, so a tip to them is a good thing.
Also they don't make all that much.

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amount of currency to take....

Unread postby Elephantears » Sat Aug 31, 2013 12:26 pm

How many Rands would you recommend to carry for 2 weeks to Kruger? Average daily spend including petrol?
Thanks very much!

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saraf
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Re: amount of currency to take....

Unread postby saraf » Sat Aug 31, 2013 12:40 pm

It's really difficult to gauge, because it depends on whether or not you are going to be eating at the restaurants.

We normally reckon on £50 per day for 2 of us. This would include petrol, food, drinks, treats, and gifts for people back home. But it depends on how much we use the restaurants.

I know that the shops, restaurants and now petrol stations take cards but, if you have a bank that charges for each foreign currency transactions, this can work out expensive. So for me cash is still the way to go.
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Re: amount of currency to take....

Unread postby JDW » Sat Aug 31, 2013 2:52 pm

Elephantears
Please be aware that South Africa only allows you to import £500.00 of cash per person.
We usually import the maximum and use a combination of cash and credit cards for all purchases.
If we run out of cash then we use our debit card to draw cash from an ATM.
Hope this helps
Enjoy your trip
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Re: amount of currency to take....

Unread postby chirinda » Sat Aug 31, 2013 2:59 pm

Regarding petrol, Elephantears, the price at the moment is R13.32/litre in Joburg, work on about 50c/litre more in the Park. I put 40 litres in my car this week and it cost R532.

When I was in Kruger last year for 8 nights I filled up at Phalaborwa, and once in the Park then again on the way home. One is travelling slowly so perhaps not using as much as highway driving, but it also depends whether you drive around all day or take shorter trips and spend time in your camps.

It is a good idea to take cash. Shingwedzi was offline in November for at least 4 days, so no card use at all. I had to drive to Punda to get petrol and fortunately my card worked there. I did not have enough cash on me to fill the car, not even thinking that offline would happen. I'm sure it doesn't happen often but when you are card-dependent ......

It's a good idea to buy basic groceries before you arrive in the Park, but only you can decide how much you need for spending money each day.

Enjoy your stay in Kruger. :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

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Re: amount of currency to take....

Unread postby Elsa » Sat Aug 31, 2013 3:02 pm

Elephantears, there is lots of great info and advice on all thing money related in Money Matters etc
I will merge your query in there shortly.
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Re: amount of currency to take....

Unread postby Elephantears » Sat Aug 31, 2013 8:27 pm

Saraf:
At the moment we are not planning to eat in restaurants that much but very much hoping to get the Braais going where possible but who knows how that will pan out! We even haven't got the faintest idea yet, how to organise two weeks of supplies but I am reading and printing endless material on that! So possibly I was thinking much the same way as you suggested around £40 to £50 per day BUT it all depends on treats and gifts (quote) for me: that will be biltong and more biltongs and amarula!!
JDW: Thanks for the tip re: the amount of pounds that you can bring in to SA. Again, I was budgeting around £400 worth cash and use the Nationwide Credit and debit cards where possible.
chirinda:
it is really helpful knowing the price of petrol as a big chunk of the money will go towards it and as we will go all the way up to Punda and back south to CB for the exit.
Elsa:
Thank you for directing us to the right pages as I am really not that good at navigating the forum that well. I will read through it.

In 4 weeks we'll be in the park!! very excited!!!

Thank you all very much for the excellent and helpful advice.

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Re: amount of currency to take....

Unread postby DinkyBird » Sat Aug 31, 2013 8:49 pm

All I can add is that you need to ensure you do carry cash on you while in the park as telecoms lines can sometimes not be reliable in the bush and you can fill you car intending to pay by card, and find the lines down and you need to pay with cash. Travelling to and from to the park should not be a problem.
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JDW
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Re: amount of currency to take....

Unread postby JDW » Sat Aug 31, 2013 10:09 pm

Elephantears
Whilst serving in the Army the first rule regarding fuel was never go below half a tank before refuelling. This has served me well whilst touring in South Africa on three occasions with another visit this September/October.
Regards
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Goronta
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Re: Money Matters: ATM - CC - Cash

Unread postby Goronta » Sat Aug 31, 2013 11:42 pm

Just for information you can get 6000 rands in one shot at Absa ATM at the arrival hall in O.R Tambo airport in Jo'burg.I was there at the end of july
For most of the ATM in South Africa the limit was usually 2000.

The fees to use your credit card for any payment are so high that I prefer to pay cash all daily purchases.And there is no real risk when in Kruger or other Sanparks to travel with cash.
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