Terry, the exchange rate using ATM's is about the best rate going because the major banks use the wholesale exchange rate which is often better than traditional bureau de change rate. What costs is the extra fees and charges your bank (and the foreign owner of the ATM) add on. Check with your bank about your options for reducing these fees before your trip. I recently used a debit card for a trip - topped up with my own money - it is not linked in anyway to my other bank accounts so there's no way a card skimmer can empty my life savings!. In all other respects it works exactly like your other credit/bank card.
Phil at the safety hub almost 6 years ago