Moving abroad involves many fine details – visas, health, money, etc. Access to our money is something we take for granted “back home”, but in another country, it can be kind of challenging.
We heard a story about an American couple who moved here and were shopping for real estate. The catch came when they wanted to access their money back in the States. Their bank wouldn’t transfer internationally, so they had no way to purchase property.
For Americans moving to Ecuador, the adjustment is almost non-existent. Ecuador’s currency is the US Dollar, so it’s a pretty straight forward adjustment.
But what about us Canucks? How should we do our banking here in Ecuador? Well, we recently opened an Ecuador Bank account. And while its nice to have, it isn’t completely necessary.
Before we moved here, we opened an account with a US bank called RBC Bank USA – through RBC Canada. This is simply their US version. So we have a US Checking account in Florida – but I’ve never been to Florida. The account is linked to our Canadian RBC accounts, so we can transfer back and forth.
When you open your RBC Canada accounts, ask for their USD savings account. We hold our US funds in that account, which keeps it from sitting in our accounts in the States. Its pretty simple really.
We have ATM cards (what we Canadians call debit cards) for our US accounts and we withdraw at the ATM’s here. It costs $1.50 per withdraw, and RBC USA credits back up to $4.00 per month of these fees. They don’t charge any service fees, with a minimum of $700 in the account at all times.
They will wire money internationally. Last week, as we were preparing to purchase our car, I called our US bank, and in less than 24 hours they had wired the money into my Ecuador bank account. I was very impressed. Not all banks will do this. We have friends from the States and their US banks won’t wire money internationally without them being present in the branch. Its rather inconvenient.
So if you are a Canadian planning a move to Ecuador, consider RBC Bank USA. If you are an American, you might also benefit with an account. They are flexible and reliable. By the way, this isn’t a paid advertorial – we just really like this bank.