ATMs in Italy: Fees, Cards & Getting Cash in Italy (2024)

ATMs in Italy: Fees, Cards & Getting Cash in Italy (1) Jarrod Suda

ATMs in Italy: Fees, Cards & Getting Cash in Italy (2)

Jarrod Suda

Guide

Jul 27, 2023

Advertiser disclosure

Along with much of Europe, Italy and its vendors and restaurants are moving quickly toward cashless payments in 2023. Still, cash will come in handy if you want to leave a tip for exceptional restaurant service or if you want to purchase local produce at your neighbourhood market. Some taxi drivers may not accept digital payments. Some shops even offer discounts - or sconto - for paying in cash.

Monito's guide to ATMs in Italy will help you find the best ATMs to use in Rome, Florence, and elsewhere, and what fees you may be charged. We will also detail out a few debit cards and multi-currency cards like Revolut, which I have used to avoid unnecessary charges when using ATMs on my travels in Italy.

ATMs in Italy: Fees, Cards & Getting Cash in Italy (3)

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Everything To Know About How To Get Cash In Italy

  • 01. How to find ATMs in Italy scroll down
  • 02. What are the ATM fees in Italy? scroll down
  • 03. 3 tips to avoid ATM fees abroad scroll down

Jarrod Suda ATMs in Italy: Fees, Cards & Getting Cash in Italy (4)

How to Find ATMs in Italy

ATMs — called bancomat — in Italy can be found at airports, touristic centres, or banks in cities and towns all across the country.

The best way to find machines that accept your foreign debit cards and credit cards in Italy is to use an online ATM locator for Maestro and Mastercard, Visa, American Express, and Discover (Credit cards in Italy should work so long as you have a 4-digit PIN code).

Now, let's have a look at the main Italy cash machine providers below:

Free ATMs to Use in Italy

Italian bank branches host ATMs machines. BNL (Banca Nazionale del Lavoro) is the only Italian bank that currently participates in the Global ATM Alliance, which is a global network of banks that waive international ATM access fees.

For free ATM withdrawals in Italy, find a participating BNL ATM branch here:

Italian Bank ATMs

Other Italian banks will charge cash withdrawal fees to tourists and other users outside their ATM network. Check if your home bank is connected to a bank network in Italy. For example, Unicredit is an international bank, active in 13 countries, that may offer privileged ATM access to non-Italian Unicredit customers.

To find ATMs in Rome, ATMs in Florence, and others across the country, have a look at these locators:

Avoid Euronet ATMs in Italy

Euronet is a widespread ATM network throughout Europe that often places its ATMs in city centres and near touristic areas. While convenient, these ATMs are notorious for charging higher usage fees than banks. They also lure their users into hidden exchange rate margin costs, which we will discuss how to avoid later in this article.

While these ATMs are a better option for getting euros in cash than a bureaux de change at an airport, Euronet still remains near the bottom of the totem pole of recommendations by Monito experts.

Jarrod Suda ATMs in Italy: Fees, Cards & Getting Cash in Italy (5)

What Are the ATM Fees in Italy?

When you withdraw (ritiro in Italian) cash from ATMs in Italy, you will be charged a usage fee unless you are a client of the ATM's bank network. In addition, you can be charged other sneaky fees. Before we learn how to avoid these ATM fees, let's quickly walk through what they are.

ATM fees in Italy will come in any combination of the following three ways:

  1. Basic cash withdrawal fee
  2. Currency conversion fee, or ‘exchange rate margin
  3. Dynamic currency conversion fee

1 — Cash Withdrawal Fee

As stated earlier, you should not be charged this fee if you withdraw Euros from a Global ATM Alliance member, like BNL.

However, if you withdraw from any other Italian bank or from a private ATM operator, such as Euronet, then you should expect to be charged this fee.

2 — Currency Conversion Fee, or ‘Exchange Rate Margin’

The exchange rate margin is a hidden fee that applies when travellers spend with non-local currency (i.e. using your debit card linked to your British (£) bank).

At any given time, there is a so-called “mid-market exchange rate” — this is the real exchange rate that you can see on Google, xe.com, or here on Monito. The local provider — who is taking your pounds, for example, and giving you back Euros — will rarely use this rate. Instead, they may do the math at a rate of 1% or 3% higher than the market rate. They’ll keep the difference.

Many Italian ATMs at banks will exchange your currency at an exchange rate around 1% weaker than the real mid-market rate. Euronet will often exchange your currency at an even weaker rate.

ATMs in Italy: Fees, Cards & Getting Cash in Italy (6)

Revolut: Best Way to Get Cash in Italy

A reliable option for avoiding currency conversion fees is to open a multi-currency account and get yourself a travel card. Withdraw up to $400 monthly without being charged ATM usage fees from Revolut (though third-party ATM fees and weekend surcharges may apply).

Try Revolut now ❯

or read the full review

3 — Dynamic Currency Conversion (DCC)

ATMs in Italy: Fees, Cards & Getting Cash in Italy (7)

A DCC is a special kind of currency conversion fee that allows you to complete a transaction in your home billing currency instead of the local currency (€) — and this fee is always optional.

When you make a purchase from a local Italian merchant, this fee will be charged by your card company like Visa or Mastercard. When withdrawing from an ATM, this fee is charged by the ATM operator.

The exchange rate they will charge is not only higher than the market rate but is also often significantly worse than a traditional bank’s exchange rate (we’ve seen margins of up to 8% and 10%).

The long story short: always choose to pay in the local currency. In the case of Italy, this is Euros (EUR).

ATMs in Italy: Fees, Cards & Getting Cash in Italy (8)

Should I Pay in Local Currency (€) or My Home Currency in Italy?

If you have ever travelled to a country that didn't use your home country's currency, you've probably been prompted by ATMs and payment machines to choose to pay in either the local currency or your home currency.

As we will discover in this article, you should always choose to pay in the local currency — Euros (EUR), for the case of Italy.

3 Tips When Using an ATM in Italy

While ATMs at well-established banks are usually transparent about their fees, other operators deliberately use confusing layouts and wordings to charge you more. ATM fees can be frustrating to understand especially if communicated by a machine in a foreign language.

To keep your travels as stress-free as possible, we have three simple tips for you to keep in mind before you handle transactions in cash.

Jarrod Suda ATMs in Italy: Fees, Cards & Getting Cash in Italy (9)

Tip #1: Pay in the Local Currency (€) When Withdrawing From ATMs in Italy

As stated before — pay in the local currency () and avoid paying in your home currency.

If you're a frequent traveller, then you'll be familiar with paying at a shop, restaurant, or ATM, and being presented with a choice: Pay with the local currency or your home currency. If you chose to give your home currency to Italian merchants or ATMs, then they will apply the dynamic currency conversion (DCC) to convert that into Euros.

This percentage is almost always higher than the exchange rate that would apply if you had paid in the local currency (€).

Merchants are often unaware of what a DCC even is, as the profit margin will go into the pockets of the ATM operator or your card company. Be aware that you don't need to be travelling abroad to encounter DCC fees. You can often find them when shopping online or even when making PayPal payments.

Companies that offer multi-currency card services also include Revolut, Monzo, and Monese, which operate across most of the globe and in the world's most used currencies. Be sure to check our 2023 review to discover whether these services might make sense for you for your next trip abroad.

Jarrod Suda ATMs in Italy: Fees, Cards & Getting Cash in Italy (10)

Tip #2: Don’t Use Bureaux de Change as an Alternative

Bureaux de change kiosks, whether at airports or in city centers, will charge any combination of fixed fees, poor exchange rates, and commission fees. We once found that Travelex Champs-Élysées, bureaux de change in Paris, charged a 16.6% margin when exchanging 500 US dollars into Euros.

ATMs often remain a better option than bureaux de change to obtain cash. Even still, Italian ATMs will apply exchange rate margins to your cash withdrawals.

This is why we recommend using a travel card to get cash. They are built to avoid currency conversion fees.

Tip #3: Use a Multi-Currency Card Instead of a Traditional Card

Just because you have a bank that waives foreign ATM fees does not mean that it also waives exchange rate margins. Plan ahead by getting a travel card, which gives you the live market exchange rate.

There are usually three types of travel cards: prepaid travel cards, debit travel cards, and credit travel cards.

Types of Travel Cards

  • Debit Cards: Innovative digital platforms like Revolut, Wise, or N26 offer travel debit cards that have a multi-currency function. They will normally convert your money using the real exchange rate for a one-time fee for the service. You will then be able to manage your current balance from their mobile apps. With your multi-currency cards, you can pay in the local currency like a local.
  • Credit Cards: You can also find credit cards made for international payments offering good exchange rates and low fees to withdraw money abroad. Capital One, for example, is one of the only companies in the United States that charges 0% international transaction fees when spending with their cards. However, you will pay interest on your ATM withdrawals each day until you pay them back — so try to avoid withdrawing cash with credit cards.

ATMs in Italy: Fees, Cards & Getting Cash in Italy (11)

Revolut: Best Way to Get Cash in Italy

A reliable option for avoiding currency conversion fees is to open a multi-currency account and get yourself a travel card. Withdraw up to $400 per month without being charged ATM usage fees.

Plus, by loading Euros onto your Revolut Card prior to your trip to Italy, vendors and merchants will assume you have a local account when you present your card. The machine will never apply exchange rate margins nor will it ask you to do a dynamic currency conversion.

Try Revolut ❯

or read the full review

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ATMs in Italy: Fees, Cards & Getting Cash in Italy (2024)

FAQs

ATMs in Italy: Fees, Cards & Getting Cash in Italy? ›

Types of ATMs in Italy

How much does it cost to withdraw money from an ATM in Italy? ›

ATM fees in Italy can vary depending on the banking institution and the type of your card. If you're using an Italian bank card at an Italian bank ATM, withdrawals are typically free. However, for foreign cards, most Italian banks charge a withdrawal fee that ranges between €1 and €5 per transaction.

Which ATM has no fees in Italy? ›

Free ATMs to Use in Italy

BNL (Banca Nazionale del Lavoro) is the only Italian bank that currently participates in the Global ATM Alliance, which is a global network of banks that waive international ATM access fees.

How can I avoid ATM fees in Italy? ›

  1. Use a travel credit card instead.
  2. Choose a bank that doesn't charge foreign ATM fees.
  3. Use a bank that reimburses ATM fees.
  4. Use your bank network's ATMs or partner ATMs.
  5. Pay in local currency.
  6. Reduce ATM usage.
  7. Use your debit card to get cash back at a store.
May 17, 2024

What is the best way to withdraw money in Italy? ›

ATMs withdrawals are the cheapest way to get local currency, but watch out for the per-transaction fee. Your bank is likely to have a fixed fee for each transaction, and in order to make the best use of your money it will be better to avoid small withdrawals.

Should I get euros before going to Italy? ›

Resist the urge to buy foreign currency before your trip.

Some tourists feel like they must have euros or British pounds in their pockets when they step off the airplane, but they pay the price in bad stateside exchange rates. Wait until you arrive to withdraw money.

Should I bring my ATM card to Italy? ›

Yes, Visa and Mastercard debit cards are widely accepted in Italy, especially in the big cities and tourist areas. You can also use them at Italian ATMs. In some smaller or more rural areas, though, it could be a good idea to have some euros on you - just in case.

Can Americans use ATMs in Italy? ›

Know your cards.

For credit cards, Visa and MasterCard are universal, while American Express and Discover are less common. US debit cards with a Visa or MasterCard logo will work in any European ATM. Go "contactless." Get comfortable using contactless pay options.

Does bank of America charge ATM fees in Italy? ›

Bank of America will assess an international transaction fee of 3% of the U.S. dollar amount for all ATM withdrawals processed in foreign currency. International ATM operators may offer to do your currency conversion for you, but they may charge a higher fee for conversion.

How can I get cash without paying ATM fees? ›

There are several ways for you to avoid ATM fees, with the most simple one being to only use ATMs within your bank's network. You can generally locate the nearest fee-free ATM using your bank's mobile app. Online-only accounts often offer access to larger ATM networks than brick-and-mortar banks.

Which debit card has no foreign transaction fee? ›

Discover® Bank

Discover doesn't charge foreign ATM network or foreign transaction fees. But Discover card acceptance can be limited outside of the U.S., Canada, Mexico and some Caribbean nations. With an HSBC Premier Checking account, customers pay no foreign transaction fees. HSBC also has a worldwide network of ATMs.

Which banks don't charge international ATM fees? ›

Some accounts with ATM or debit cards that may be convenient and inexpensive to use abroad include:
  • Schwab Bank High-Yield Investor Checking.
  • Betterment Checking.
  • Capital One 360 Checking.
  • Alliant Checking.
  • First Republic ATM Rebate Checking.
  • Fidelity Cash Management Account.
  • USAA Classic Checking.

Do you get charged for using a debit card in Italy? ›

There are no fees from European banks but do check with your bank about their exchange rate... some will take a fair bite of your money. A lot of smaller shops in Italy prefer cash and won't take debit or credit cards.

Does Italy prefer card or cash? ›

In 2022, approximately 67% of consumer payments were made with cash. However, the average transaction value (ATV) of card payments is higher than in countries such as France or the United Kingdom, indicating that payment cards are primarily used for higher-value transactions.

Should I carry cash in Italy? ›

What you do need cash for will be: most taxis, markets, cafés, and small convenience stores. Bear in mind that many of these outlets have problems in breaking large bills (€50s or even sometimes €20s), so preferably carry as many small notes (€10s and €5s) and as much loose change with you as you can.

How much money can you withdraw from an ATM in Italy? ›

ATM withdrawal limit and ATM Fees

Withdrawal limit: ATMs typically restrict the withdrawal per transaction from €250 to €1000 per transaction. Handful of ATMs do not put any limit and you can withdraw as much as your bank limit allows you to.

How much are foreign ATM withdrawal fees? ›

The fees are often 1% to 3% of the amount of a purchase, and many banks also apply the fee to ATM withdrawals. Below, we compare the amount financial institutions charge to make an international ATM withdrawal or debit card purchase. » Looking for information about credit cards?

What is a typical ATM withdrawal fee? ›

In all, the average total cost of an out-of-network ATM transaction is now $4.73, which combines the average fee of $1.58 charged by one's own bank with the average surcharge of $3.15 levied by an ATM-owning bank.

How much are ATM withdrawal charges? ›

You have to pay Rs. 21 for each transaction after your ATM cash withdrawal limit has been reached. According to the RBI, the purpose of the transaction charge increase is to make up for the basic cost and interchange fee hikes that financial institutions have to bear.

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