i hopped on the Simple bandwagon a while back and while i really enjoy the new-fangled online bank, it does have some limitations. the main one is that my debit card cannot be used in certain countries. this wasn’t an issue earlier this year since when i went to blacklisted Latvia, i was able to use my Bluebird. however, there are no American Express ATMs (as of this writing) in largely still cash-based Myanmar, so Bluebird is out as an option, and so is American Express’s Express Cash program (both further discussed, along with my bank’s policies, in an earlier post).
i looked into Green Dot’s prepaid debit cards but they do not allow you to use international ATMs. i did, however, discover that Chase Liquid should work (according to their call center), and i would do it, but i don’t want to deal with paying the monthly fee, though it might be a good last-ditch backup.
is my best option, then, just to carry around the cash? my hotels are prepaid, so i will just need to bring enough for my intra-Myanmar ticket (which i’m paying for once i land) and transportation, admission, and food. my biggest fear is not getting the money stolen *knock on wood*, but rather running out of money. on the other hand, i don’t want to carry around too much. i suppose if worse comes to worst, i can use my credit card for a cash advance, but i don’t like the sound of that at all. i guess i should just pretend i’m visiting in the pre-ATM days, heh. (unfortunately those days were also the pre-inflation days!)
yes, yes, i know i should probably change banks, but let’s just say for now it’s not an option. suggestions as to a maintenance-fee-free prepaid debit card that works in overseas ATMs, or a Visa or MasterCard program that, like Express Cash, links your credit card to your checking account?