Jump to content

ATM, usd, and currencies on a multi island cruise


Recommended Posts

We are going on a multi island cruise (Dominican Republic, St. Kitts and Nevis, Guadeloupe, Martinique). I understand people take dollars but I don't want to carry too much cash. Do all these islands have ATM's. What currencies will they give me. Are the ATM's reliable? Can I get by with usd and one other currency?

I plan to use mostly private guides who insist on cash.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

USD is the most widely used foreign currency in the Caribbean. For most tour guides in port, they accept USD. We prefer though to book private tours where we can pay by credit card and just bring a small amount of USD for tips and other incidental expenses. Suggest not using debit cards in the islands.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Forums

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks, but I don't understand. Do you mean to not use ATM cards at banks or stand alone ATMS. What is the concern?

 

The independent gujides all seem to want cash. USD but cash.

 

How do balance the risk of carrying all that usd cash vs using ATMs.

 

Will ATMs give me usd or local currency.

 

At they all different local currencies?

 

Thanks

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's a great question cause it's complicated. On my cruise last week I took $100 US, mostly small denominations, and it was a godsend (though didn't anticipate lunch on St. Barts needed to be paid in cash. Good thing I didn't splurge too much).

 

 

One thing noticed on some of the islands impacted is that sometimes credit cards worked, sometimes they didn't.

 

 

I don't have a problem with using ATMs in the Caribbean but you'll get the local currency -- euro on the islands with French or Dutch heritage, Eastern Caribbean Dollars in places like Antigua, St. Kitts, Nevis...

 

Carolyn

 

Thanks, but I don't understand. Do you mean to not use ATM cards at banks or stand alone ATMS. What is the concern?

 

The independent gujides all seem to want cash. USD but cash.

 

How do balance the risk of carrying all that usd cash vs using ATMs.

 

Will ATMs give me usd or local currency.

 

At they all different local currencies?

 

Thanks

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

I prefer to use cash, but if you don't that's ok too. I carry only the amount I expect to use that day when visiting an island, and leave the rest locked in my room safe. I usually allocate about $100-US per day. Most businesses and vendors in the Caribbean accept (and even love) US dollars, especially those that frequently deal with cruise passengers.

 

Paying for shore excursions online ahead of time is a great idea, but not always available. Companies that have a website for online transactions will charge more than those that keep it simple and have lower operating costs. Plus, they still want tips in cash.

 

In using cash, I use several hiding places on my body. I also carry a "teaser wallet." This is a small wallet that holds a small amount of cash, and some expired/fake ID cards & credit cards. This way, no one knows how much money I am truly carrying, so they will not demand higher prices, or demand my wallet. If I get robbed in a foreign country (which has never happened, thankfully) I can toss the wallet away in one direction, and run to safety in the other direction, without loosing much. I keep my real wallet and passport in my front pants pocket, which is more difficult for others to get to. Yes, I secretly carry my actual passport identity with me, just in case something bad does happen in a foreign location. I keep a copy of it in my room safe.

 

Carry lots of smaller US bills, such as fives and ones. Don't count on businesses being able to break larger bills in your own native currency. It's also great for tipping just the right amount. In using smaller bills, if I get change in the local currency (which often happens), I can either keep the change as a unique souvenir, or use it to purchase a small souvenir, and not worry about loosing much money in either case.

 

I hope these tips help.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Thank You for 25 Years - Click for Fun Stuff!
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • Canadian Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...