11 July 2008

Resolving The Bank Madness :: Resolviendo La Locura Bancaria

(es) Finalmente, resolvimos la locura de banco en nuestra vida. Al poco rato, comprendimos el modo más facil y efficiente para retirar guita en Buenos Aires sin abrir una cuenta corriente nueva en Argentina o haber seguir todos esos pasos ridículos justo para conseguir un puto CDI: se llama Citibank, el mega-conglomerado. Abrimos una cuenta corriente conjunta entonces, teniendo cuidado de no haber puesto mas de $50 dólares en la cuenta, para aségurarnos que la bancarota de Erika no quite nuestro dinero. Después de que todo salga bien, su mamá se pone a depositar dinero poco a poco. Y ya que hay cajeros aútomaticos en abundancia en Buenos Aires, no vamos a pagar comisiones bancarias cada vez que retiramos plata. ¡Gracias a díos!

(en) We finally figured out a way to resolve this bank madness. After a little while, we figured out the easiest and most efficient way to withdraw money in Buenos without opening a new checking account in Argentina or having to following all those ridiculous steps just to get a damn CDI: it's called Citibank, the megaconglomerate. So we opened up a joint checking account, being careful not to put more than $50 bucks into the account in order to make sure that Erika's bankruptcy doesn't take away our money. After everything works out, her mom will start depositing money into it little by little. And since there are plenty of ATM's in Buenos Aires, weren't not going to pay bank or ATM fees everytime we withdraw money. Thank God!


Frank.Sugar&Spice said...

Hate to burst that bubble but, I had a Citibank account from Chicago and I did have to pay ATM fees overhere. I no longer have that account and it was a long time ago so things may have changed.

You might want to check out the Yahoo group called BANewcomers and ask your questions there.

Jeff said...

I just checked my citibank statement for a 1,500 peso withdraw on Thursday. No $5 ATM fee like with my Bank of America card, but as I mentioned in another comment: you are charged that fee if you use the non-citibank ATMs, e.g., banelco. So, you gotta stick to those citi-branded ATMs that are only in the lobbies of citibank branches.

Citibank does, however, a 2% foreign transaction fee but it's still comes out cheaper than any other way to bank here that I've experienced, especially if your income is from outside Argentina.

JACKSON BLISS @ 水と魂 said...

Dear Jeff and Frank,

Two words: Thank. You. Seriously. Thanks Frank because your suggestions spurred an intense flurry of research. Some people claim that HSBC only charges a 1% foreign transaction fee, or none at all and no ATM fee when money is withdrawn. But at this point, we don't know whether this is wishful thinking or hard data we're talking about. The problem is that Erika and I are running out of time. We leave in almost exactly three days and we just have so much shit to do. Thank you Jeff because I don't feel nearly as bad keeping our Citibank account, at least until I have some incontrovertible proof that there' something better out there.

What seems clear to me: opening an Argentine bank account is not worth the pain. There's lots of steps, there are severe ATM withdrawal caps, and I've read and heard from other people who told me that they charge you even to DEPOSIT money into their banks. For now, we'll stick with Citibank. And if we find lots of fees on our account, then we'll have her mom send us the money in Western Union and close our account.