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    MotherBear's Avatar
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    Default EFTPOS cards

    How do visitors to NZ stand with regard to paying for things with EFTPOS cards? I?ve heard that a large number of transactions in shops, garages etc. are conducted with the use of this type of card rather than using cash. Surely it must be possible to have the option of paying in cash, as I can?t imagine the thousands of visitors to NZ each year all opening bank accounts in order to obtain an EFTPOS card?

    As we are hoping eventually to settle in NZ, we would like to open a bank account there. However, at the time we arrive for our visit in December, we probably won?t have the necessary funds to make it worthwhile, as we are awaiting the sale of our house in Spain. (See Stevey et al, you aren?t the only ones playing the waiting game). If our villa does sell before we fly down :043: , we would then consider buying a place in NZ and would need a bank account. We are with the HSBC here and, no doubt, could transfer funds quite easily to their branch in Auckland but it?s not very convenient with them having only the one branch. Do they have links with any other banks in cities around the country to assist their outlying customers or would one have to hike all the way to Auckland every time to pay in or withdraw money etc.?
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    Default EFTPOS cards

    EFTPOS, or 'Electronic Funds Transfer at Point Of Sale' for short, is just like a UK debit card, and the terminals they use also accept credit cards in most stores. And you can pay cash! Just EFTPOS happens to be a very popular form of payment here, which is why you hear a great deal about it.
    Taffy

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    Default EFTPOS cards

    That?s good then. You know where you are with a few notes in your hand. I don?t know where I stand with my UK banker?s card as it?s a new Chip and PIN one. Apparently I have to visit that bank?s cashpoint to activate it, but I have a sneaky feeling there isn?t one around for a few thousand miles. Also, I?d queried whether I could use the same PIN from my old expired card (they?d never sent a replacement card) but they didn?t answer my question. Now I?m left with a nice shiny new card but no way of activating it and, even if I did, I still wouldn?t know if I could use my old PIN. Handy! But all is not lost and I can always fall back on my good old Barclaycard if need be, so I?m sure we?ll be fine.

    Out of interest, how do those of you in NZ with UK banker?s or credit cards fare when it comes time to replace them? Do you have any problem in having new ones sent out to you? Here it?s very hit and miss as to whether you receive them or not. The hubster has only recently managed to get his new card from the bank after several years of trying, including visits to the bank itself when we?ve been in the UK. Perhaps it?s just our particular bank that?s the problem.
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    Default EFTPOS cards

    I think the only bank that features in UK as well as NZ is HSBC.

    I had a new card sent out for my UK account without problems at all. If intending to live in NZ full time though, best to scrap those UK credit cards ASAP as paying them off is a lot of hassle internationally!

    With the chip and pin cards, if you do not have a pin it doesnt matter. Although most transactions are pin related here, if yo udo not know or have forgotten your pin, you can sign instead.
    Taffy

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    Default EFTPOS cards

    We're with the HSBC here, as it's one of the most convenient banks to use in this area. They have branches in most, if not all of the Gulf states so we just transfer funds from one country's bank to one in another country. It could be inconvenient to do this in NZ though, if the only branch is in Auckland.

    We don't have a problem with paying our credit cards abroad, as we've set up a direct debit with our UK bank to pay out whatever bills we've run up.

    It's good to hear that I can use my Chip and PIN card without the PIN. Just a bit of a worry that I can't get to the bank's cashpoint to log it in and activate it. Could end up a useless piece of plastic.
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    Default EFTPOS cards

    We have retained accounts at the Halifax and Natwest so that we can continue to receive money from UK sources and pay relatives by direct bank transfer when they purchase things that we can't buy in NZ. Can't tell you how valuable that is especially when it comes to buying presents from places like Next who post directly to the relative.
    We have no difficulty in using debit or credit cards here in NZ and regularly take money out at atms. There are of course nominal charges for withdrawals etc but the exchange rate usually covers us.
    Best advice - keep an account and credit cards going.

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    Default EFTPOS Cards

    The machines seemed totally random as to whether they accepted my chip and pin number this summer (as in yes at one WAREHOUSE, no at next) but they were quite happy to let me sign. Banks always took number.

    Re your new card, you do get 3 goes before the machine eats it, so you could try your old number in the ATM and see if it accepts it!

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    Default EFTPOS cards

    Thanks Boorer, I was thinking of trying the card with my old PIN but was a bit nervous in case something went wrong and it kept my card or worse. I didn't fancy a long distance phone call for help to the bank in the UK, knowing how long it takes to get to speak to someone with some sense. Wouldn't I still have a problem with not having activated the card first though?
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    Default EFTPOS Cards

    Hi Mother Bear! Love your posts, by the way - always informative - and humerous where appropriate!

    If it's just a bank card not a credit card you usually don't have to activate it - does it have a sticker on it saying you have to? I know the new debit cards we've got in the past couple of years haven't needed activation, but the credit cards all had a big sticker on with a number to call.

    Hope that helps, and that your card doesn't vanish!!

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    Default EFTPOS cards

    Hello again, Boorer. The card I?m concerned about is a bank debit/Visa card. It came with a leaflet and one paragraph contained therein states ?You will need to activate you PIN before you can use your card. To do this you will need to go to a Lloyds cashpoint machine and follow the same process for unlocking your PIN that?s listed below?. It also says ?If you already use your PIN to get cash from the cashpoint, then there is little change?. Now, I don?t know if that means I wouldn?t have to activate the card if I already have a PIN (if it's still working, that is). Admittedly I rarely use the UK bank account other than for direct debits or paying a few cheques out for birthdays, but it?s always handy to know that I can use it if I need to or if we?re visiting the UK. I can only try to use it with the old PIN at a cashpoint here that accepts Visa and see what happens. I?ll take a crowbar with me just in case it decides to retain my card for ?security reasons?.

    Thanks for the positive feedback on my postings. It?s very welcome. And also many thanks to you for your kind assistance. :023:

    Humorous?........ Well, having 2 comedian sons like Taffy and his brother I always need to keep 2 steps ahead of them. (Huh! that?ll be the day)
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    Mother Bear

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