🇲🇽 Monzo in Mexico [Discussion]

Ahhh ok do you know if it was expensive? Am i better off taking cash or monzo card? Thanks for replying

The Monzo rate will definitely be better, since taking cash means you probably get charged fees at a cash exchange

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I’ve had problems with widthdrawing money from HSBC in Mexico, magstip enabled- the transaction doesn’t even reach the app to give a reason- it just gets cancelled at the ATM.

BBVA is the same

Santander is the most reliable with no problems.

The card also doesn’t work in A couple of retail stores (h and m and a Hurley store)- again nothing the app to say the reason- the transaction just didn’t get through.

These are the only issues I’ve had so far after 2 month.

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Out in Mexico at the moment and the current account card has been working flawlessly- thank you! I’m fact, it’s been working so well, two things have happened:

  1. I’ve forgotten to take another card out with me because it’s worked so well! :man_facepalming:

  2. Due to the great interface design (and having not cleared a previous transaction notification :wink:) I noticed some restaurants in Playa del Carmen (both using Santander PDQs- coincidence?) had been charging me in GBP, not Pesos (MXN)

It looks like merchants are technically supposed to get you to sign to say you understand you’ll not be charged the MasterCard rate but the slips saying this were always presented as transaction receipts to sign (which I initially thought was just a quirk of being in Mexico). I only happened to look back over the second slip I got because I noticed a GBP-only value appear in the app (immediately- :nerd_face:) then when I looked a bit closer; a GBP value, exchange and commission rates on the ‘receipt’.

It looks like the merchant has an option for local / foreign rate presented to them on the device as part of the process (as well as one for calculating and adding their tip!) so I’ll be asking them to charge me Pesos from now on…

Hopefully this will help someone else avoid the Santander (and possibly others) poorer rate / commission and get charged the great Monzo / MasterCard rate instead :+1::mexico:


Option - sure, but each time it should come with customer’s consent, as per Mastercard rules. Seems like they’ve been slapping you with DCC without seeking your permission first, which is a breach of Mastercard rules. :wink:

Also - welcome to the community, @mikebrooman! :wave: :tada: :smiley:

I’m gonna do a shameless plug of my guide:


Thanks Avishai! :wave:

I did wonder if this was the case and didn’t think I’d be the first. I was aware of DCC at ATMs but I’d never seen it on a PDQ device before. Turns out searching for “POS” and not “PDQ” could’ve avoided a n00b first post :roll_eyes::grin:

Great guide, thanks for sharing :slight_smile:


Pretty busted for cash withdrawals in Morelia, Michoacán for what it’s worth. I think I managed one withdrawal at Mexico City airport but none of the ATMs in Morelia worked, even those clearly marked with MasterCard logos. On the other hand, payments for goods, meals etc. all worked flawlessly.

I tried to pay something in Mexico and the card was rebected twice. Should I have notified that I was travelling to Mexico before using the card?


Works: Santander

Does not work: BBVA & Banorte

Thank you for your helpful comment, @Tsusoup! We’ve moved it to this Monzo in Mexico wiki so it can help even more users :mexico:

Just returned from Mexico

  • Most ATMs default to magstrip, but most can read the chip and usually ask you to enter your card when the Machine realises there is only a chip

  • Most ATMs charge you a fee from the Mexican banks. I found CI Banco to have the lowest flat rate charge of 17.4 Pesos approx. 70p per withdrawal.


Tried my Monzo card in a retail store here at Chetumal, Quintana Roo and it was declined. But I used it at the supermarket and it went through so think it just depends.

Haven’t been in México for a few years now and have failed to find any ATM that doesn’t charge a cash withdrawal fee on any of the main networks.

Can anyone advise which ATMs allow withdrawal without fees and the states they can be found in?

Hi just wanted to know if Monzo is assessable in Cancun will be traveling there shortly for a Holiday. :sunglasses:

I’ve always taken cash, last time I was there I did keep an eye out for cash machines but they all charge a fee. Going this year and will likely just take cash with me

I’m planning on going to Mexico in May and I work for a travel company, so I get commission free currency exchange. I’m trying to work out if I’d be better off just doing that and taking cash, as I’d probably incur costs withdrawing cash should I need it while I’m in Mexico… or do you guys think that the convenience and security outweighs the amount I would save? Im just thinking i’ll definitely need to withdraw money at some point as I’ll be going on trips and not sure if there will be ATMs everywhere

I didn’t find any free ATMs in Mexico. This is what I found:

Bancoppel 15 peso fee
Banmexico/Citibank 35 peso fee
BBVA 25 peso fee
Scotiabank 100 peso fee
Santander does not work (says “invalid card”)

Restaurants don’t allow you to select your own tip, instead they ask you (to shame you!) and select it themselves!

I didn’t find any DCC problems.

However, I had a major problem with one restaurant called La Coyoacana, I posted about that here:

I didn’t use Monzo much in Mexico because the fees are much higher than their competitors but the different ATMs charged different fees depending on which bank your card came from.

Never had your issue with tips in restaurants though. I simply asked the server to add an amount of my choosing on.

Is it not much cheaper (not to mention safer) to just pay the 15 MXN every now and then?

Latest updates on ATM fees in Mexico:

No free ATMs
Banamex/Citibank 30 pesos
Santander - 34 pesos
Banco mercantil del norte/banorte 46 pesos
hsbc - 75 pesos
BBVA - 174 pesos
Scotiabank - 100 pesos