From A as in additional savings tip to Z as in zany fees

Caution: Withdrawing money in Hungary

Being a DKB client or customer with a different credit card that guarantees the fee-free withdrawing of money abroad, one has to be extra careful, because the target of operators of foreign ATMs (foreign currency) are gullible customers.

Here you will learn within only a few minutes on what you need to pay attention especially in Hungary, in order to not to fall into a trap of expensive fees. In the end, holidays should be one of the most beautiful times in life.

Sadly this clip is only in german available, but you can see the system uses the images:

1. ATMs for tourists

Of course, there is no “official” separation of ATMs, but if you pay attention when travelling in Hungary – especially in the capital Budapest – you will notice that the ATMs of the operator Euronet are particularly placed at locations, where many tourists pass by (transportation hubs, shopping areas).

The Euronet ATMs are always and easily available. Often, they are directly placed on the house wall.

You will be welcomed by the ATMs of this company already at the airport (arrival hall at the baggage claim).

ATMs at the airport Budapest, Hungary

Further ATMs of Euronet are situated next to the exit at the taxi stands. I could not find ATMs of other companies at the Budapest airport.

Perhaps you have already read about this advice on our special portal:

It is useful to supply oneself with the local currency in a foreign currency country. Watch the video (above) on how to withdraw cash at the Euronet ATMs without becoming a victim of the fee trap.

Caution at this option

Withdrawing money in Hungary: Monitor

Do always choose the offer without “Wechselkurs-Garantie” (exchange guarantee) on the left side.

The difference is already clear on the receipts

Receipts from ATMs in Hungary

Do you notice the bad conscience on the receipt when choosing the right selection button?

Euros 15.19 difference on the bank statement

Statement of DKB of the cash withdrawal in Hungary

The difference between the left and the right button is Euros 15.19 at the lowest proposed withdrawal amount! These are the hidden fees, of which I want to warn you. Most bank customers do not even notice these additional costs!

2. ATMs for local people

Hungary prefers the ATMs of banks (and not of the ATM company Euronet). The ATMs of the banks are usually located in the foyer of the bank branches. Although there are lots of bank branches in Budapest, these do not always attract one´s attention.

Finding an ATM in a bank branch will pay triple for you, because:

  • the Hungarian ATMs do not even confront you with the decision whether to opt for a displayed exchange price or not – the billing is always made by the main bank and thus at a fair price,
  • additionally, you get the same low amounts proposed for withdrawal, so you do not have to keep the Hungarian Forint and you do not have to change them back paying high fees in exchange offices,
  • the withdrawing in the protected foyer of a bank is much safer than on the house wall of a badly assessable road.

However, you have to expect that the menu of the ATM is not available in German language. However, for most people, the English versions are quite understandable.

Who can you provide with this knowledge?

If you enjoyed this video, please feel free to share it with friends and family. Additionally, you can subscribe to our channel (Optimal-Banking.TV) and receive messages, when further valuable advices are published in order to make your travel life easier.

Save more through paying in cash

Now that you have learned to supply yourself fee-free with cash in Hungary, please do so, as this will help you to save more costs in Hungary.

Taxi bill in EUR and HUF

Paying with cash is cheaper in Hungary!

Example: Taxi from the airport to the hotel

You can book a taxi from the Budapest Airport (BUD) at a fixed rate. If I – like most Germans – would have paid in Euros, one would have charged me Euros 24. In the Hungarian currency Forint, the price was 6,550 HUF.

Since I got an exchange rate of 1 EUR = 291.511 HUF from the DKB, the taxi ride only cost Euros 22.47.

Saving of 6.8 percent!

You may assume that this is not a single case, if the price in Euro is above the Forint.

Please think about the savings, if you pay all travel expenses in local currency!


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More articles about cash:

Withdrawing cash in different countries:

Bosnia | Honduras | Hungary | Ukraine | USA
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Who writes here?

Someone who gained experience with more than 100 banks in more than 20 countries during the past 15 years. My name is Gregor and if you click to continue you can find out why I am here and what this site is for ⇒ continue.

15 Responses to “Caution: Withdrawing money in Hungary”

  1. Conor says:


    I recently moved to Budapest from Ireland. Which ATMs are the best and cheapest (low fees) ones to use?

  2. Jane says:

    Hi, thanks for the informative article. Is there any extra saving by withdrawing money from Hungarian bank ATMs vs. Euronet ATMs at the airport? Of course, I will not let the machine do the exchange for me.

    • Gregor says:

      Mh, I have shown in the above article how one can withdraw money in Hungary completely free of charge … so I somehow do not understand your question, how one can still save money!?

  3. Jane says:

    Hallo, meine Frage war nur, ob es überhaupt einen Unterschied gibt zwischen den Euronet ATMs und den Geldautomaten für Einheimische. Gibt es irgendwelche versteckten Kosten, wenn man dieses “Euronet” Geldautomat im Flughafen benutzt? Danke trotzdem für den Kommentar

  4. Kitajiji says:

    Dear Sir,
    Thank you very much for your valued information.

    If I use English language of Euronet ATM,
    The design of the display menu are same with your German example?
    I should choose the offer without “exchange guarantee” on the left side, Is this my understanding correct?

    Could you give me the correct selection
    by the photos of the English display?

    Thank you very much for your kindly help.
    Best Regards,

    • Gregor says:

      Yes, this is very likely… however, we cannot try it, as we do not live in Hungary. I will do it on my next trip to this country 😉 Until then, please just read the menu with attention, as it could change in the meantime!

  5. Dave says:

    Your information about Hungarian bank ATMs is out of date. I’ve been a frequent visitor to Budapest for several years. Over the past 2 years or so, one by one the local bank ATMs have started offering this wonderful “service” of converting your money at a terrible exchange rate too. Even OTP do it now.

    Anyway, the answer is the same, always choose to bill to your account in HUF without any conversion.

  6. Greg Oneil says:

    Don´t use Euronet ATM i took out 100.000 Ft and it was 364,15 € over 30 euros more then in a normal ATM, and i live here since 2 years and i didn´t pay attetion

  7. Jan Aas says:

    I want to buy an equipment in Serbia where is difficult to use bank card. It was a bit urgent and I took out Eur 1200.- It was 11.700 Nkr from my account. If I took out HUF from a normal ATM (K&H) and change it at any Change shop, it should cost approx. 10.800 NKr. It was easy and fast, but I have lost about 30.000 HUF or 100 EUR on this bussiness. Think it twice!!! Never more!

  8. Colin says:

    Thanks for the article, Gregor!
    This provided some very good information for us, during our visit to Budapest.
    We brought HUFs with us (normally better to get currency from your own bank, at home), but still needed to exchange a bit more whilst we were here. We only brought about 17,000 with us – for those places which wouldn’t accept credit cards (I use a UK credit card which is well known for offering the best exchange rate, along with charging NO other fees!; I only ever use it for foreign trips).
    I started with the ATM in the hotel’s foyer (thought that may be a little safer, at least) and went all the way through to seeing what rate were about to get; I’d pressed the right-hand button (as per what NOT to do in your fine article) and it was offering 308 HUF – compared to the 331 we got back in the UK!
    Ran away from that one, and came upstairs to do some research!
    Read your article, and went back down to check the ATM – sure enough, it was a Euronet machine!
    Did a bit more research, and found that the main Hungarian bank was OTP.
    Found the nearest OTP branch, and used my credit card in an ATM, there. As “Dave” above says, OTP also offer the transaction in your card’s home currency (GBP £ in my case) now, but as you said (and as with ANY credit card foreign transaction – not just getting cash) if given the option to pay in your “home” currency or the local one, ALWAYS choose the local one – HUFs in this case.
    In this case:
    Euronet ATM in the hotel – 308 HUF / £ (using “wrong” option, in your article)
    Home bank’s “preferential” rate we paid before we travelled: 331 Huf / £
    OTP branch ATM (NB check closing times!) 334 HUF / £.

    Hope this extra bit helps other travelers.

    Good article – thanks again!

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