Cashing Amex travellers cheques

Is there anywhere in Taipei that will cash a modest amount of travellers cheques for me? I have about 800US$ left over from a recent holiday and could stand to transfer that back to TWD.

None of the banks I visited in Hsinchu were interested in the slightest and the hotels I visited wouldn’t because I wasn’t a guest.

I think the best place to change money is the big bank (Bank of China?) close to the presidential office. I forget the name and the address. But it’s the big official state one. I even got some Dutch Gilders there on the spot a few years ago.
I would have thougth that US$ travellers cheques would be pretty easy to change… Must be part of the plan to attract more foriegn tourists they keep talking about :unamused:

It is strange that no one wants to take your T/C.

If they are American Express you of course could try going to the Amex office in Taipei. They used to be on the corner of Minsheng East / Tunhwa North Rd. (near McDonalds) Don’t know if they are still there.

Other than that, in Hsinchu you should try the The International Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) . Their main business is international fx remittances. I got very fast service there recently changing some HK$ bills into NT$. No service charge - unlike Chinatrust, which wanted to add on a hefty service charge.

ICBC does take traveler checks…and i hope for you that you don’t end up with the same stupid clerk as me. since she gave Amex the wrong no. on my check, they thought they would be fake ones…
had to go to the Amex office the next day where they found out, that nothing is wrong with my checks and i finally got my money…
hell…wouldn’t i happen to know some people in taipei, i would have spent my first day on the street…imagine how pissed i was…

I went to the American Express office last week, second floor of IMG building.

Wazai’s location is correct, beside the McDs and on the corner of Minsheng E and Dunhua N. $800 US is no problem since the 小姐 almost made a greavous error when she cashed my 200USD, she added an extra zero to my NT and started counting up 70K NT instead of the 7K i was expecting!

(Damn i love being tall and a native english speaker here in Taipei) :wink:

I used to cash my tr. chqs at The Royal Hotel in Hsin Chu (by the science park) and at the bank right across Kuang Fu from the hotel.

And the bank one time gave me the US rate for Cdn. currency…hehehehe…for about an hour, then they came to my school and had me sign a debit slip to make up for the amount…oh well…

This was 3 years ago tho…

You can cash American Express traveler’s checks at almost any bank in Taiwan. But they are always very picky about these rules:

  1. The person who cashes the checks must sign his/her name at the bottom of each check at the time he/she is cashing them. The checks cannot be signed in advance.

  2. The name which is signed at the bottom of each check must be exactly the same as the name which is written at the top left corner of the checks. In other words, you can only cash your own checks. You can’t cash checks which someone else bought for you.

  3. You have to show your passport to prove that your name is the same as the name which is at the top and bottom of each check.

  4. The middle of each check (where it says “Pay to the order to”) must be blank.

I once got into an argument with a bank clerk because he refused to let me cash traveler’s checks which my parents sent me because my father had already written his name at the top left corner of each check, and he had already signed his name at the bottom of each check, and in addition, my father had written my name in the middle of each check. So this violated all four rules.

Then I went to 5 or 6 more banks, and they all refused to cash the checks for the same reasons. So I had to mail the checks back to my parents, and then my parents mailed me blank traveler’s checks, which I easily cashed.


Those are the rules of travellers cheques, it’s the same everywhere.
There is a good obvious reason why the person who buys them has to be the same person who cashes them. They were meant to be a safe way for travellers (the clue’s in the name :wink: ) to take money abroad. They weren’t meant to be used to transfer money abroad.

Yups you need to sign the cheques in front of the teller when you buy the cheques and again when you cash em and they have to match.

My local bank here in Taipei was willing to let me cash my amex cheques but there was a 3-4 week holding period… yah right! Some banks will wave the holding period if you’ve been a longtime customer or your work has a corporate account there.

Anyways, just go to Amex branch(address above) and the girls will cash em for you right away… you need to give em a phone number and local address though. plus your passport of course

If it hasn’t already been suggested, try ICBC (International Commerce Bank of China, I think). I didn’t have an account there, and on 2 occasions, I changed about US$1000 of American Express travelers checks at the HsinTien branch in one shot. Another time, I think it was the KuTing branch for a similar amount.

You will need your passport, and they’ll have to call them in, but I walked out with NT$ within 30 minutes. The top was already signed, and I signed the bottom in the teller’s presence, and the Pay to line was left blank.

That was last year, so I don’t know if things have changed or not since then though.

Is it safe to say it’s better (in terms of convenience) to bring U.S. cash instead of traveler’s checks when coming to Taiwan? Are exchange rates different when exchanging cash vs. exchanging traveler’s checks?

What’s the big deal here? Are they second and third party cheques? If not, go cash them…if one bank won’t do it, they will tell you which one will. The only problem I’ve ever had cashing travellers cheques was on my own little Gilligan’s Island in Thailand…a quick longboat back to Phuket and I was all set…never even had to go inside…

Oh…and in Japan…but they are financially medieval in that country…

Traveler’s checks, definitely. And, the exchange rate is usually better for traveler’s checks. I’ve never had a problem with travelers checks at ICBC. Never had a problem in Japan either.