17. What is the best way to get money while in La Paz?
ATM machines are one way to have access to funds. Some ATM’s will give you dollars, most will give you pesos.
Some other suggestions for ways to receive funds: Arrange for bank-to-bank transfers by filling out the proper forms at your financial institution before you leave home; such transfers can then be requested by voice or fax; payment is the same day; pay out can be made in U.S. currency or pesos. Get a telephone number from your bank which will put you in touch with a person, rather than a «communications system».
Money can be sent via Western Union; to Banco Azteca, located in the Elektra stores and Money Gram operates through Walmart in La Paz and most other towns, which receive funds by wire and pay out is in pesos. Personal checks on USA banks are rarely accepted since the USA has now forbidden checks issued on US Accounts to be cashed outside the United States. US coins are useless to anyone, as the banks will not accept them; please don’t use them for tips.
VERY IMPORTANT NOTE: Local businesses and banks WILL NOT TAKE BILLS THAT HAVE BEEN WRITTEN ON. Inspect the bills you are bringing with you and exchange any that have been marked or damaged. Very few banks change dollars, but most stors and money exchange establishments will change dollars.