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Avoiding ATM fees abroad

With the economy in its current dismal state, travel - especially international travel - has decreased. But if you're lucky enough to get away to another country for work or pleasure, you're probably wondering about the easiest and cheapest way to get access to foreign currency and avoid fees.

My advice is to see if your bank is part of a Global ATM Alliance. I use Bank of America, for example. When I was in Hong Kong, I withdrew money from China Construction Bank for no ATM fee. When I was in Montreal, I withdrew money from Scotiabank. If you're in the U.K. and have a Bank of America ATM card or Check Card, use a Barclays bank. In France, it's BNP Paribas. And so on.

Before you arrive, find the branch nearest your hotel or the airport and you'll be flush with cash without having to fork over any of those annoying ATM fees. Anyone else have advice on the best ways to exchange foreign currency while traveling?

--Joseph Popiolkowski

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