I agree with a lot of what Chris wrote on this.
I have found Dutch banks hopeless with Mastercard. And in 1990 on one
occasion they managed to extract the same large amount from my account
twice, which caused me no end of bother later on into my trip. Actually, the
ordinary banks in Hilversum would not even deal with MC; I had to go to a
little office sitting on its own looking for all the world like a stranded
container beside the railway line, to do my MC withdrawals. GIRO, on the
other hand has an excellent reputation locally. And I had been sending my
family money during the previous 3 months using Bank cheques, thinking
that would be quickest and more certain. Not a bit of it. They would not pay
out until the cheque had been sent back to New Zealand and verified here
before paying out in Holland. Took about 3 weeks minimum, and caused the
family quite some hardship.
Last year I purchased an expensive lens from Denmark, and paid then by
wire transfer direct into their bank account; that cost $NZ15 (about $US 6.25)
which I thought was expensive. It was virtually instantaneous. The teller did
while I watched.
Registered mail from here costs the same, but for some reason I cannot
understand, they instruct that money, valuables and valuable documents
should not be sent registered mail.. I mean; why else would you use the
As a buyer on eBay, I find PayPal fine because most sellers do not have an
MC seller account but this operates just as fast and certainly.
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