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ATMs at CDG airport now controlled by Currency Exchange companies, not banks?

I heard that ATMs at Heathrow in London are moving to being connected to Currency Exchange companies, not banks, therefore it costs you more to use your U.S. ATM card to get pounds at the airport. Does anyone know if this is true at France's CDG airport, re getting euros? I don't take local currency when I go abroad. The first thing I do after landing is find a bank ATM and get cash in the local currency. I have always understood that this costs either no extra fee, or very little, depending on the bank who has issued the card. I am off to France via CDG and will take a few euros from home, then find a bank ATM in the town I am headed to, if the airport doesn't have bank ATMs anymore. What do you think? Thanks! Ann.

Posted by
7014 posts

If you limit your withdrawal amount, it really shouldn't be a big issue. I much does a person really need too tide them over before they get into town? Taxi money? Even if you pay a bit more to get that first 25-50 EUR, it's not that big a deal (certainly not the same thing as ordering hundreds of EUR before going over).

Posted by
6560 posts

What you are alluding to is the use of Dynamic Currency Conversion (DCC), where the ATM offers to do the transaction in your home currency. You always have the option to opt out of that and get cash at no more than the usual fees. Done it many times at Heathrow at Travelex operated ATMs. CDG was no different.

Posted by
115 posts

Thanks Paul. So it sounds like, indeed, there are no, or few, bank ATMs at CDG, right? I wasn't aware that you could opt out of DCC. My friend at Heathrow must not have realized that. I will look for that "button" on the screen. I think you are saying that once you select that opt out you will not be paying extra, it will be the same as a bank ATM, yes? Ann.

Posted by
2954 posts

You’ll find both bank (HSBC Bank) and non-bank ATM’s at CDG. I’ve never had a problem finding an HSBC machine and was never asked to accept dynamic currency exchange on theirs.

Posted by
2368 posts

You’ll find both bank (HSBC Bank) and non-bank ATM’s at CDG.

The HSBC ATMs have been gone from CDG and ORY for over a year. Travelex now has the ATM concession. I have not found that the Travelex ATMs add any fees if you withdraw euros. They will also dispense dollars but I am not familiar with their fee structure, if any.

There is also at least one la Poste ATM in each of terminals 1 and 2. La Poste, in addition to delivering mail, is also a bank. If you are concerned about possible fees using the Travelex ATMs, use one of the la Poste ATMs.

Posted by
2562 posts

You have to pay attention when DCC shows up. There is a trend to couching the phrase so that you think you must accept as the only way for the transaction to proceed. AS this is an offered option, I would suspect the laws there in regards to this are written so that it cannot be imposed.

Posted by
12077 posts

My impression is there are still bank ATM's in airports but the exchange booths are now machines that look just like ATM's - so it's hard to tell what it is at first glance. My rule is use anything that has "bank", "banc", "banko", etc. in the name and avoid the ones that have "ex" in the name. If it's called travelex or even bankex, for example, I'd skip it.

Another giveaway is if the first question is whether you want to use your credit card? ATM's will give you a credit card advance but they don't ask that.

Posted by
1005 posts

I've used an HSBC ATM in terminal 2 above the train station--it's next to their branch office. Here's what the CDG website says

HSBC CDG Airport branch is located close to the TGV railway station (Level 4, opposite Sheraton Hotel), terminal 2.
Open Monday to Friday, from 08:45 to 17:00.

While Travelex is notorious for adding on fees and trying to confuse users with DCC, when they get a contract for airport ATMs, as at Heathrow and CDG, they seem to be on their best behavior. I'd use them inside an airport if they were my only choice--but carefully!