Cash is king...Where to get it.

Are you still using your foreign card to get money out of the ATM´s? If so you are not alone, some of us even though we have moved to Monterrey still use our foreign bank accounts.

In my case I still go to the ATM and withdraw money from my European card in order to pay cash and avoid getting my card cloned, yes that happens in some places in Mexico.

However this can be frustrating since some of the ATM´s are an absolute ripoff! Charging up to 91 pesos per transaction and only allowing you 3000 pesos max, Scotia Bank is by far the highest I´ve seen. After that comes BBVA Bancomer with 81 pesos allowing 6000 pesos max withdraw.

Here is what I do and find this works best for me.

Banamex is the best one they only charge 30 pesos but they allow up to 8000 pesos.

HSBC, Afirme and Banorte charge anything between 33 to 40 pesos but allow only up to 6000 pesos. There are other banks but I haven´t tried them all because I like big institutional banks in case I have a problem with the ATM.

Another good tip is always to go to ATM´s located inside malls, supermarkets or convenience stores like 7-Eleven or Oxxo since these often get better maintenance and I feel safer getting my cash out and going in to the store to buy something. Opportunities for thieves are more likely to be around an open ATM right on the street. Try to use ATM´s which have their ID number clear on them. Once I had a problem with an ATM and having taken a picture of the ATM number helped a lot in claiming my money with the bank.

Another issue currently growing throughout the world are the RFID devices used by thieves to steal your card details. We haven´t heard of this happening in Monterrey but it is certainly happening in other states. Now do not confuse your chip and pin card with an RFID card. The last one is the very new version that some banks are introducing. If your card is RFID then you should probably consider buying a protecting sleeve or wallet.

Hope this helps you get the best value service from the local banks. If you have had any particular issues with a certain bank or ATM´s we would like you to tell us about it so we can share it with our community.