Using credit card in Singapore

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by nacho, Dec 14, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. nacho

    nacho Silver Member

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    We are going to SG for 5 days (3 full days) and we don't go there often so we would like to have as little SGD cash as possible (don't want to keep small change). I know that you have to pay cash for food in food court etc. but what about supermarket like Carrefour? I assume that they take credit cards without charge, is that true?

    Thanks in advance.
     
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  2. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    I have been to Singapore several times recently and will be spending New Year's eve there this year. I do not know the answer to your specific question, since I have never used my card in that way. However, unless you have a card that waives the forex fee, you will still pay a charge overseas, so my approach has been to take no SGD but to get enough, first at an ATM at the airport to get me to the city, and then draw cash from the ATM as I need it. This also gets around paying an extra charge, which may be in addition to the forex fee, if the supermarket charges it. As a rule of thumb, I take very little cash on my intl trips, I use my no-forex fee credit card as often as possible (restaurants, shops) or on large purchases (hotel bill,e.g.), and get cash from ATMs on as needed basis...
     
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  3. cennas
    Original Member

    cennas Gold Member

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    Welcome to MP, nacho!

    And yes, supermarkets in Singapore do accept credit cards without additional charge (the forex fee will depend on the card you use). At Carrefour there is a minimum purchase amount before you can use a credit card to pay, $20 IIRC.
     
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  4. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    As far as leftover cash, just use it as partial payment for your hotel bill on your way to the airport.
     
  5. TRAVELSIG
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    TRAVELSIG Gold Member

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    What I do in almost every country!
     
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  6. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    Definitely good use of leftover cash. Something that I also like to do with extra foreign currency at the end of a trip is to leave some on the desk for the lucky housekeeper who would come in to clean the room after I left, with a note saying "Xie xie ni" or "danke schone", if the service at the hotel was especially good...
     
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  7. misman
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    misman Gold Member

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    There was also the suggestion in the Starbucks thread to use the last of your foreign currency to load your Starbucks card. No forex fee, and it will convert to your local currency.

    Note that I have no personal experience with this...
     
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  8. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    Some hotels and airports have a big donation container for foreign currency that then goes to a charity.
     
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  9. craz
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    craz Silver Member

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    a person needs to 1st check with their bank to see if there are any restrictions = only x ATM withdrawls per month are free (or statement period) , are withdrawls at a different bank included. etc etc Otherwise it can be a very costly withdrawl especially if doing several times a day or week
     
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  10. craz
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    craz Silver Member

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    as I have often done, expect lately my Hotels were all award nights, so then I simply grinned it and got some local money from an ATM or changed $10 at the Rip Off booth
     
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  11. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    I have no such restrictions with my bank. Only one time in the early days of my intl travel did they decline withdrawal and the reason was that they had suspected fraudulent use of my account because I had used the ATM card in the US (SFO duty free) several times, before using it again several times after I arrived at the intl destination. I called them, they told me why the request was declined, and advised me to let them know of any overseas trips, which is easy since one of their branches is just next door to where I work. I try to let them know, but I have not had any issues since even when I did not...(they know my travel pattern now).
     
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  12. nacho

    nacho Silver Member

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    Thanks a lot for the info. Fortuantely I don't have to pay for hotel bills this trip.

    I know that one of my cards doesn't carry a forex fee plus there is no charge for using ATM abroad. However Mr. Nacho claims that the local ATM can charge you the fee - does anyone know about that?
     
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  13. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    Even in the US, using ATMs other than those of one's bank incurs a fee, which varies. Some countries have Citibank or HSBC galore and if you have one of their ATM cards, you might not incur a "foreign" ATM fee...
     
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  14. craz
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    craz Silver Member

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    usually if that ATM will assess a fee it will either have a note pasted on the machine or once you put your card in and chose Withdrawl, a message will pop up telling you how you will be charged by the ATMs owner for the withdrawl at which poit you can simply press Cancel so as not to be charged
     
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  15. craz
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    craz Silver Member

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    or having an Elite status with a Bank can result in not being hit with any Fees or ForEx eg Citi Gold
     
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  16. nacho

    nacho Silver Member

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    Have you experienced that a lot in SG? I have only withdrawn cash once a couple of year ago in Germany and there was no fee from that ATM.

    Thanks again!
     
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  17. craz
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    craz Silver Member

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    havent been to SIN yet, actually happens Im trying to work it out for late Jan/Feb

    Ive seen it alot in CA and SA (Central Am / South Am) and was always able to find another nearby so I ended up not having to pay

    I usually will need it only for local transport bus/tram.If theres a train from the airport usually my CC can be used unless its a subway thing.
     
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  18. cennas
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    cennas Gold Member

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    Even if there is a fee it should be minimal. I wouldn't worry about it.
     
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  19. savydog
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    savydog Gold Member

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    For any aussies out there, I can recommend this card. It does not earn any points but I have not been charged for using it at an ATM yet :) I just keep it in a credit balance, as savings accounts in Australia earn less than 1% and charge monthly fees.

    http://www.28degreescard.com.au/
     
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  20. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    I know SIN and I just returned from PEK in mid-Nov (I do not remember whose ATMI used in SIN, but in PEK it was the Bank of China;s, since not all ATMs honor foreign ATM cards and BOC always does), but I do not think that any of the ATMs said anything about a forex fee or any fee, nor did they offer me the option to "cancel". I inserted the card, selected the amount and then it coughed out the cash. To know how much extra I paid, I had to go back to my hotel room and access my account online...
     
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  21. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    Most Singapore ATM's have no foreign card fee. There are ATM's every where you look in Singapore and all accept foreign cards. Virtually all merchants in Singapore also accept non-EMV (non-chip) cards, like most are in the US, for example.
    Some merchants, many in China, for example and a few in Singapore and Malaysia, try to get the customer to accept charges in their own currency rather than the local currency. Never accept that option! It will normally be indicated on you receipt as "DCC" (Dynamic Currency Conversion) and wil cost you extra FX fees.

    By coincidence I am working with a Singapore bank right now on ATM and credit card subjects.
     
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  22. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    reload your starbucks card..
     
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  23. nacho

    nacho Silver Member

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    I don't go to starbucks so I don't have a card there.

    Once again thanks a lot for the info! I think I'll get cash from ATM.

    I know about the DCC scam - it's everywhere now if you are not aware of it.
     
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  24. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    I am no fan of Starbucks although I do frequent one in Kuala Lumpur because there is no other coffee place near my office there. I did not know the Starbucks cards worked everywhere; the ones in Malaysia are done locally and have a local website.
    Does that mean any Starbucks card anywhere can work in any country? If so, I really like that idea as a way to deal with lose change.
     
  25. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    Yes, or at least I have never had a problem using my US-issued Starbucks cards around the world and you can add to it in any currency and it's converted to home currency at favorable bank rates. Swiped it last month in HKG no worries.
     
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