Jump to content

what banks to use?


Recommended Posts

motorboy

As I am preparing for my journey to Cebu banking seems to be a hurdle I need to tackle. I currently bank at BBVA Compass, and was wondering if anyone had any experience trying to use a debit card from them. I am thinking the best options would be to get a debit card from Citi, HSBC, and maybe a prepaid card from Paypal. Does anyone use a prepaid Paypal debit card, and can you reload it from Paypal online? Thanks for any help, and it looks like I will owe many rounds of drinks for all of the great advice I have gotten so far from the forum members.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Headshot

CitiBank in the Philippines is not affiliated with CitiBank in the US. Also, HSBC only has one branch in Cebu (near Ayala), so it isn't exactly convenient.

 

The way I do my banking is that I set up with my credit union in the US to wire money to my bank in the Philippines. I already knew which bank I would use here because I set up a dollar account the year before, but that isn't really necessary. What IS necessary is that you have a very good working relationship with somebody at your financial institution in the US BEFORE you move here. What I did was to set up email between us where I use key words in each communication to ensure they know it is really me requesting money. I used Skype (in addition to an email) to give them my bank locator and account numbers for my bank accounts here in the Philippines. Without those numbers, they can't wire money to your account. You (and your financial institution in the US) need to know that you bank here will be using an international locator number, rather than the numbers used in the US. That's how I do it. I can usually access my money by the end of the next business day (here in the Philippines) if I use my dollar account here in the transfer. If I use my peso account, it takes a few days longer. For that reason, I almost always transfer money to my dollar account here. Then I go into the bank to transfer money into my peso account as I need to. I use BPI as my bank here. They have lots of branches here in the Cebu Metro area and I can conduct any business in any of the branches (anywhere in the country). I have never had a problem with them.

 

This advice, of course, is if you are coming here to live. If this will just be a visit, then all of that is totally unnecessary.

Link to post
Share on other sites

IMHO

 

If you only coming for a short visit.

 

You can pay your hotel stays with credit card and ATM pick up your cash directly from your own overseas account with card that has cirrus or plus logo`s stamped at the back.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Triple Diamond Sponsor
Monsoon

HSBC and CITI have rather high opening and maintaining balance requirements compared to other banks here. They make it clear who they want to deal with basically. Im not assuming you can't handle it, but just consider that, along with the things Headshot already mentioned.

 

You will learn that over time if you have even a little bit of dosh the Philippines banking customer service blows away anything in western civilization. When you establish a relationship your bank manager will do things for you over the phone and depending on how much dosh you will never stand in a line at a bank again.

 

There are alot of threads here already talking about foreigners opening bank accounts. Personally I would start with one of the top 3 banks here - Metrobank, BPI or BDO. If your moving here long term, you can later shop around and find what you like best.

Edited by Monsoon
  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

As I am preparing for my journey to Cebu banking seems to be a hurdle I need to tackle. I currently bank at BBVA Compass,

 

From the BBVA web site.

 

 

Using your Debit Card or ATM Card Internationally

 

 

What should I do if I plan to travel internationally and use my ATM or Debit Card?

 

 

 

To prevent an interruption in ATM or Debit Card access you must call the telephone number on the back of your card 1-800-COMPASS (266-7277) to have an agent place a travel flag on your account.

 

 

What are the fees for using a Debit Card or ATM card in a foreign country?

 

 

 

If a BBVA Compass customer makes an ATM withdrawal outside of the US at any financial institution's ATM, BBVA Compass will assess a fee for the use of another bank's ATM. In addition, an International Service Fee may be charged for ATM card and Debit Card transactions made for ATM cash withdrawals in currency other than U.S. dollars. The International Transaction Fee will be 1% of the U.S. dollar amount for each converted ATM cash withdrawal. This International Transaction Fee will appear as a separate item on your banking statement for each international transaction.

 

http://www.bbvacompa...banking/faq.jsp

 

The 1% fee is pretty cheap.. personally i travel with 2 debit cards from 2 different banks and hide one in case i get robbed or lose 1, also have 1 credit card just in case and for occasional use in good hotels only...now my GF has a BPI (Bank of the Philippine islands) account and i have on-line access to that, its just so much cheaper and easier to do a biggish transfer and use the BPI card for travel expenses.

Edited by Contango
Link to post
Share on other sites
motorboy

Thanks for the information. I should of been clearer in my question. Since I am taking the advice of so many of you (seems like good advice), before I jump in I am going to try Cebu for a few months first. I don't really want to open any accounts there yet, I want to be able to use my debit cards from the U.S. My question is what U.S. banks are the best options for me? If I plan on staying I will open a account there and have my x-wife deposit or wire my money monthly to that acct. Thanks

Link to post
Share on other sites

If you use a USA debit- or creditcard in ATM's here in the Philippines

the philippine bank will add 200 PHP to each transaction (they ask you to accept)

and most banks limit each transaction to 10,000 PHP

Link to post
Share on other sites
ellenbrook2001

also have 2 credit and saving card in case of emergency if i lost one i got the other from another bank.

i do all my transaction from Internet banking from AUSTRALIA too FOREX the next day they send me on my cellphone the password number too collect at M-LHUILIER for me hes the easier way never have a problem for the last 4 years

Link to post
Share on other sites
ed villas

If you use a USA debit- or creditcard in ATM's here in the Philippines

the philippine bank will add 200 PHP to each transaction (they ask you to accept)

and most banks limit each transaction to 10,000 PHP

 

HSBC and CITBANK ALLOWS up to 20.000 per w/d

Link to post
Share on other sites
My question is what U.S. banks are the best options for me?

Capital One - no international transaction fees.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Guidelines. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue..