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Charles Schwab checking account just for foreign travel?

Charles Schwab checking account just for foreign travel?

Old Jul 16, 2016, 10:15 am
  #46  
 
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Originally Posted by Mabuk dan gila
I have deposited US payroll checks to Schwab from my phone while in the Philippines a number of times without the slightest problem. And in one case even a $9,500 hand written personal check that I deposited from the Philippines. And that $9,500 from that was available for use in my account within 15 minutes. I sometimes use personal checks to transfer largish amounts of cash between different accounts to cover this or that expense and with Schwab I can deposit up to $10k personal check and have the cash available within minutes, whereas even a ACH or electronic transfer would take at least a day or two.

I originally got the Schwab account just because of the free overseas ATM usage for travel, but I will admit their fiendishly clever marketing ploy sucked me in and I pretty much use them for almost all of my banking and the brokerage account as well. I still have my old local Credit Union account I have had for years but I rarely use it anymore.
Great to hear. Another benefit I will definitely use then

Originally Posted by moondog
Guys: in case you haven't noticed the theme here, Schwab is REALLY good.

You might think that since my company banks with HSBC that HSBC would be favorable for me, but Schwab is actually better for any transfers >$3,000 because their awesome fx rates nullify the $30 fee that HSBC charges for wires.

I also have an icbc account, and fund it via HSBC with USD or hkd on occasion. Schwab, reliably, beats icbc by a solid 50 basis points on the fx front.

There are no strings attached, and anybody with a heartbeat can score a Schwab account. Get onboard!
I have used HSBCs global transfers to transfer from one HSBC account to another (and thus waiving the wire fee). But you are correct, their fx rates are horrible! Always get hit with an approx 3% markup. Didn't realize doing a wire from Schwab could save me a bundle. Will try this method in the future and see the difference. I'm guessing this is JP Morgan who is setting the fx rates (since it is their aba # we use when transferring to Schwab). Regardless if it saves me money, could care less who it is.
Thanks for the suggestion. ^
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Old Jul 18, 2016, 9:50 am
  #47  
 
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Anyone recently opened a Schwab account? How long does it take to set up and get running (assuming the online application takes only minutes - I'm asking about getting money in, getting ATM card, etc.)

Last edited by drewguy; Jul 19, 2016 at 1:07 pm
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Old Jul 18, 2016, 10:00 am
  #48  
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Originally Posted by drewguy
Anyone recently opened a Schwab account? How long does it take to set up and get running (assuming the online application takes only minutes - I'm asking about getting money in, getting ATM card, etc.
I helped a consultant of ours sign up for a Schwab account in January. He received his ATM card on day #3, and we wired him money on day #4, which posted at 7a EST.
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Old Jul 18, 2016, 10:04 am
  #49  
 
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Originally Posted by drewguy
Anyone recently opened a Schwab account? How long does it take to set up and get running (assuming the online application takes only minutes - I'm asking about getting money in, getting ATM card, etc.
Originally Posted by moondog
I helped a consultant of ours sign up for a Schwab account in January. He received his ATM card on day #3, and we wired him money on day #4, which posted at 7a EST.
That's not my experience. I opened it online on July 14. It's July 18 and I have just verified trial deposits and requested ACH funding in (so that will take 2 more days). And still no checks or ATM card. I was required to mail in a signature card before receiving the ATM card. Imagine that will take some time (a few weeks).
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Old Jul 18, 2016, 6:32 pm
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Originally Posted by TravelinSperry
That's not my experience. I opened it online on July 14. It's July 18 and I have just verified trial deposits and requested ACH funding in (so that will take 2 more days). And still no checks or ATM card. I was required to mail in a signature card before receiving the ATM card. Imagine that will take some time (a few weeks).
My experience was much closer to moondog's. That said, I initially funded the account by depositing a check at a Schwab office.
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Old Jul 18, 2016, 7:16 pm
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I got pick pocketed today and called Schwab to cancel my debit card and get a new one. Took about 5 minutes from start to finish. The rep was great and waived the rush fee for the replacement card as a gesture towards my years of service.
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Old Jul 19, 2016, 11:29 am
  #52  
 
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Question

Originally Posted by Mabuk dan gila
I have deposited US payroll checks to Schwab from my phone while in the Philippines a number of times without the slightest problem.
To clarify, 'from your phone,' you mean with a special mobile application that takes a picture of the check? Or do you simply call bank operator, and recite the numbers from the check?
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Old Jul 19, 2016, 12:01 pm
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Originally Posted by TObject
To clarify, 'from your phone,' you mean with a special mobile application that takes a picture of the check? Or do you simply call bank operator, and recite the numbers from the check?
I use Schwab's mobile app to deposit checks regularly, by taking photos of front and back of the check. Easy and quick.
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Old Jul 19, 2016, 1:08 pm
  #54  
 
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Originally Posted by TravelinSperry
That's not my experience. I opened it online on July 14. It's July 18 and I have just verified trial deposits and requested ACH funding in (so that will take 2 more days). And still no checks or ATM card. I was required to mail in a signature card before receiving the ATM card. Imagine that will take some time (a few weeks).
Huh - I was told by CS chat the ATM card was sent automatically once money was deposited. The trial deposits appeared the day after I opened the account, and I just deposited funds (using a pull from my existing bank account).

We'll see re ATM card.
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Old Jul 19, 2016, 7:47 pm
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Originally Posted by drewguy
Huh - I was told by CS chat the ATM card was sent automatically once money was deposited. The trial deposits appeared the day after I opened the account, and I just deposited funds (using a pull from my existing bank account).

We'll see re ATM card.
Perhaps I will receive two cards. I had to fill out a signature form for the card, but perhaps I misunderstood and they were sending the ATM card regardless (and my sending in the signature card won't delay receipt). In any event still no ATM card... yet.
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Old Jul 23, 2016, 1:18 pm
  #56  
 
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Originally Posted by drewguy
Huh - I was told by CS chat the ATM card was sent automatically once money was deposited. The trial deposits appeared the day after I opened the account, and I just deposited funds (using a pull from my existing bank account).

We'll see re ATM card.
My data point - ATM card received today.

Timeline:

7/18 (M) - open account online; set up bank transfer
7/19 (T) - test transfers occur; make transfer from existing account
7/23 (St) - Card arrives

When I asked, I was told cards are sent from Virginia, so might arrive more quickly than the promised 7-10 days (I live in DC). That said, I imagine that unless you're in a rather remote area, you might be able to be up and running within 7-10 days all in.
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Old Jul 23, 2016, 8:44 pm
  #57  
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I do this - I keep my spending money (about 2k) in a Schwab checking account. Haven't touched the brokerage side. No issues yet.

The card is chip and signature, but I'd recommend just pulling cash at an ATM on arrival and mostly dealing in cash. (Seems like most places want chip and pin for small purchases.)
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Old Jul 23, 2016, 9:05 pm
  #58  
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Originally Posted by greggarious
I do this - I keep my spending money (about 2k) in a Schwab checking account. Haven't touched the brokerage side. No issues yet.

The card is chip and signature, but I'd recommend just pulling cash at an ATM on arrival and mostly dealing in cash. (Seems like most places want chip and pin for small purchases.)
It really depends on the country. In Mexico for instance, that advice makes sense but that's because card acceptance is fairly poor there. Meanwhile, you're likely better off using credit cards for most purchases in Western Europe and maybe reserving the Schwab card for unattended locations such as ticket machines.
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Old Jul 28, 2016, 1:56 pm
  #59  
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Originally Posted by tmiw
It really depends on the country. In Mexico for instance, that advice makes sense but that's because card acceptance is fairly poor there. Meanwhile, you're likely better off using credit cards for most purchases in Western Europe and maybe reserving the Schwab card for unattended locations such as ticket machines.
I'm also pretty privacy conscious, and don't like a big trail of how I've spent my money.

And even in Germany/Netherlands didn't see nearly as much acceptance as USA. Found it easier to mostly use cash unless in high end restaurant.
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Old Jun 22, 2017, 4:30 am
  #60  
 
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I've had schwab for 6+ months now and through 10+ countries. Excellent. Only downside is that I didn't do this sooner. Couldn't be happier. EVERYONE who travels internationally should have this debit card account.
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