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International Banking: Usa <> Thailand


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I used to use Citibank and was pleased with them...until they sold all their branches in Texas, where I

had my accounts,

The Texas bank that bought them is crap...always have to phone this bank to get anything done.


I was told that Schwab is good, no fee to use an ATM here in Thailand to transfer funds from an

Account in the USA.

I chatted with Schwab and most everything can be dome online, which is great with the time difference and all.


Anyone using Schwab?

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You can't deposit cash into account and checks deposited take 4 business days to clear. If you use their bill pay option, it also takes 3-4 days, even with the funds in account. I left the ATM with my long time Thai friend and neighbor who takes care of my house. When she needs money to cut grass or clean the inside of house, I transfer money from brokerage account and tell her how much to take out in baht. Otherwise, I leave $1.00 in checking account. I had left my U. S. Bank ATM with her but was racking up fees of around $16.00 for withdrawals of $110.00. Schwab saves me the $16.00, which is every 4-6 weeks.


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Schwab's checking account, which comes along with a required brokerage account that you don't have to use unless you want to, is great.


Their VISA debit card has no foreign currency fee on ATM withdrawals and purchases abroad, and they refund other banks' ATM fees, including internationally, automatically without any hassle. The Schwab debit card also usually has a standard daily ATM withdrawal limit of $1000, which is larger than a lot of regular U.S. banks provide via their cards.


Schwab does have both U.S. domestic and international accounts, and you really want to open and maintain the accounts as U.S. domestic ones, if at all possible, using a U.S. address and phone number as your contact info.


As for getting money into or out of the Schwab accounts other than thru their debit card, Schwab has free ACH transfers that you can initiate from their online banking to either push funds into other banks' accounts you may have, or to pull funds into your Schwab accounts from those other external accounts. Linking external accounts is easily done via their online banking, and the transfers, both inbound and outbound, are free. Though they do limit those to two transfers per day.

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Getting the account setup at Schwab has been a looong process...going on two weeks now.


Go to Schwab office to setup accounts. Write a check to fund the account.

Nothing happens.

Phone Schwab...they need some ID (passport)...why didn't they mention this when I was at their office?

Go to the Schwab office, give them a copy of my passport.

Check on the account. Has to be approved because of the Patriot Act...WTF!!!!!

OK, approved.

Phone to assure that my checks and ATM card are getting sent out...not yet...I have to transfer funds from the

brokerage account to the bank account.

Go online to do the tranfer of the funds...cannot

Phone Schwab...check has not cleared...over one week...WTF!!!


The check is suppose to clear this Friday...the checks and the ATM card are time sensitive as I will not be in the

USA to receive them!!!!


Banking in the USA is farked up!!!!

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