Travelling this summer? Expect a financial farce courtesy of HK’s banks if you’ve any intention to access your cash…
Why is my ATM card a piece of crap now?
Several major banks forced customers onto the UnionPay ATM network this year, instead of the internationally recognised, VISA-backed ‘Plus’ system. The mainland government-backed UnionPay network is operated under the People’s Bank of China, leading some conspiratorial HK Netizens to become suspicious of the changeover, as documented over on BadCanto Blog.
My card doesn’t work in foreign ATMS!
There are not many UnionPay-friendly terminals outside of Asia. Even if you find one, it may not have been updated to cope with new chipped cards. You can check on the Union Pay ‘globalisation’ pages to see if the card is accepted anywhere in your destination country (the site is reassuringly riddled with grammar and spelling errors).