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obtaining cash


New Member
One issue I haven't seen discussed is how pilgrims obtain cash along the way. I'm coming from New Zealand and am not sure about whether to have travellors' cheques to cash in the cities or how to manage this. Also how much should I budget for refugio accommodation and food along the way? Any ideas??
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Cash along the way

There are many ATM's (hole in the wall dispensers) in most larger towns.
I have never taken travellers cheques - some small banks don't have foreign exchange departments and won't cash them.
You can allocate E1 per 1km walked.
If you intend walking for a bout 30 days, covering 775kms - your food and refuge costs will come to about E775. Of course you can do it for less if you don't have the Peregino Menu (± E8) or offer any donations to the refuges - and sadly many pilgrims just don't bother to put a coin in the box.
Most refuges only expect about E4 - more if it is a private refuge.
Hope this helps,


Active Member
Some guide books will even tell you which towns have ATMs and which don't. I've got a Spanish book that was very helpful on that basis.


Do check the small print with your debit/credit cards. Most charge 2.5% (or more) for using abroad, foreign atm's, shop purchases, etc - if you are UK citizen get a Post Office credit card - it's free to use it abroad!
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Time of past OR future Camino
(2006) Roncesvalles to Leon (2007) Leon to Compostela

Use ATMs, you'll find them at regular intervals, but take out enough cash a week, then the bank fees are not too high. Just remember not to let your cash run too low, especially in villages where there may not be an ATM.

Take a debit card and credit card, and if you want maybe traveller's cheques for extra security. A useful option to bulky traveller's cheques is the Travelex card. Have seen it in Australia so guess you can get it in New Zealand too. You buy the card and put whatever amount of euros you want on it, and use it in ATMs like a debit card. It can be topped up on the way.

It's important to let your bank know when you're going overseas, as they sometimes see the overseas ATM withdrawals as a breach of security on your account, and will close it down.

I allow about 20euros per day. That covers the refugio, a 'menu del dia' lunch, and snacks. Some days it's more, others less.

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On the VDLP there were far less opportunaties to use ATm's but I don't believe that will be a problem on the camino frances super highway. The VDLP passes through about 5 major towns where you could use ATM's but I tended to use cash-and very small denominations at that

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