Banking and Money Matters
Using Credit Cards
Nehmen Sie Kreditkarten? - Do you take credit cards?
Unlike in the United States, credit card acceptance is mostly limited to the tourist trade (hotels, rental car agencies, airline or rail tickets, etc.). Don't be surprised if some restaurants and shops in tourist areas do not accept credit cards. Therefore, always ask the question above before deciding to buy something or sitting down in a restaurant.
Germans, Austrians, and the Swiss prefer to carry Bargeld (cash) than most Americans as it's the norm for many situations in which purchases will be made. Look for an ATM and use your credit or debit card to get cash for your purchases.
There are stores and businesses that will accept the EC (Maestro) card, but you must have a German or European bank account in order to get one. Be aware it's easy to confuse the EC/Maestro bank card logo with the MasterCard logo.