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Bethie

Oct 3, 2008, 3:33 PM

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credit cards

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Another silly question as we continue to pack and ready for our move...will my sears mastercard and home depot card and my costco membership card that I have here be accepted in Mexico or do i need to re-apply once in Mexico?



bournemouth

Oct 3, 2008, 3:50 PM

Post #2 of 11 (5511 views)

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Re: [Bethie] credit cards

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They will be accepted but watch for charges for foreign currency transactions which can increase your bill in dollars by 1% - 3% - some cards even go higher. This is basically a cash society.


esperanza

Oct 3, 2008, 6:19 PM

Post #3 of 11 (5489 views)

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Re: [bournemouth] credit cards

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They will be accepted but watch for charges for foreign currency transactions which can increase your bill in dollars by 1% - 3% - some cards even go higher. This is basically a cash society.

This 1% to 3% foreign transaction fee is charged by your credit card company.

In addition to that foreign transaction fee, Costco in Mexico charges a higher price for its merchandise if you pay by credit card rather than with cash. The fee Costco adds on is about 3%. You end up paying a total of 4 to 6% more for what you buy with your credit card, depending on whether your credit card company charges 1% or 3%.

Plus, Sears in Mexico automatically offers a 10% discount on its merchandise if you pay using cash.


http://www.mexicocooks.typepad.com









Gringal

Oct 4, 2008, 6:53 AM

Post #4 of 11 (5458 views)

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Re: [Bethie] credit cards

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...and when you make the move South, be sure to tell your credit card companies that you're in Mexico.
The first time we tried to use our Visa card here, it was refused and we had some telephoning to do before it would work again.

The other posters are right about the extra charges. In Mexico, it's better to use cash. Where we bought a frig, they gave us an 8% discount for cash. Reason given: it takes a long time for the merchant to get the money from the credit card purchase, plus there are fees the merchant must pay.

If you work with the right bank, you can get cash from the ATM machine without extra fees. There are several threads on that subject to search.

Buen suerte


thriftqueen

Oct 4, 2008, 8:54 AM

Post #5 of 11 (5437 views)

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Re: [Bethie] credit cards

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As some of the others pointed out those additional transactions fees can be rough. Another side issue is the risk of your credit card number being stolen and used by thieves. I've known several cases of this happening. As for your Costco membership card being honored in Mx I feel certain that it will be. We don't have a Costco nearby so can't use mine however I did have a Sams Club card and it was honored here in Mexico.


bournemouth

Oct 4, 2008, 11:13 AM

Post #6 of 11 (5417 views)

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Re: [thriftqueen] credit cards

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No problems with your US Costco card in Mexico.


sioux4noff

Oct 5, 2008, 6:23 PM

Post #7 of 11 (5349 views)

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Re: [Bethie] credit cards

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Our Sams Club membership card is fine here, but the credit card portion of it is only good in the US. Look at your Home Depot card to see if that is the same.


Bethie

Oct 6, 2008, 4:13 AM

Post #8 of 11 (5320 views)

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Re: [sioux4noff] credit cards

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I will be using credit card(s) only for emergency. It is good to have found out about the additional fees charged. They (the credit cards) are part of a back-up plan which I hope I will never have to put in place.
I thank everyone for the information!


sioux4noff

Oct 6, 2008, 11:00 AM

Post #9 of 11 (5283 views)

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Re: [Bethie] credit cards

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Unlike many people, we do use our credit cards relatively frequently here in Mexico. We have a Capital One VISA card which does not charge the international currency conversion fee, and the exchang rate they give is decent.
We have charged purchases at Mega (Comercial Mexicana), Soriana, Home Depot and Walmart. We do not use it at Sam's Club or Costco as those stores give a better price if you pay with cash.


JohnnyBoy

Oct 7, 2008, 9:31 AM

Post #10 of 11 (5217 views)

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Re: [Bethie] credit cards

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The only US credit card I have had any trouble with is Home Depot. I have been making a new house livable here for the last six months. I went out of my way to get a Home Depot credit card, while still in the USA, only to have it rejected at the Home Depot here in Hermosillo the first time I tried to use it. The Mexican Home Depots apparently have their own cards.

I have not tried to apply for any Mexican credit cards because I know that many, if not most, of them come with high annual "membership" fees and higher than a Boston Blue Blood's snoot interest rates.

From time to time I have trouble with my Costco card/membership. It is actually an American Express credit card with a Costco logo on the back. It ALWAYS works in the USA but from time to time it hiccups here in Mexico. All they do is call one of the management team over to the register (which can take a while) where he does some magic, and VOILA, I am accepted.


Carron

Oct 9, 2008, 1:52 PM

Post #11 of 11 (5163 views)

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Re: [Bethie] credit cards

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Another option: We have had a regular checking account at Santander Bank for over ten years and never had a problem. There are branches and ATMs all over Mexico. (Of course neither of us has a clue about how to write a check in Spanish, but we have never needed to).

My husband and I each have a VISA debit card and they are useful almost everywhere, except for street vendors! A good back-up in case your foreign credit cards are refused for whatever reason. We have also used them in the US with no problems, either.

And we find the most recent monthly statement is an excellent identification document as proof of financial credibility when we are doing personal business here.
 
 
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