MIHAIL KOGALNICEANU, Romania - The use of U.S. currency overseas has been mitigated for years in Iraq, Kuwait, Afghanistan, Bahrain, The United Arab Emirates, Qatar and other countries. Now this means of individual finance has reached Romania.
The 106th Financial Management Support Unit, Task Force 16 has implemented the use of the Eagle Cash Card for transient and permanent party personnel at Mihail Kogalniceanu Airbase, Romania March 24.
The Eagle Cash system allows service members to withdrawal funds from their primary checking account and loads them to a prepaid debit card. This card can be used at all vendors and Morale, Welfare and Recreation centers on base without transaction fees. Finally, the system brings an element of security to individual service member’s funds while in Romania.
“The Eagle Cash system allows all personnel here to access their money without the risk of carrying cash,” said Spc. Kedisha A. Samuels, a finance specialist with the 106th FMSU and a native of Clarendon, Jamaica. “Each card is protected by a pin number and funds can only be spent, transferred to another card or returned to the card-holder’s bank.”
The Eagle Cash system replaces the casual pay service the FMSU offered previously. If a servicemember wishes to withdraw Lai, the Romanian currency, they can load cash onto their Eagle Cash Card and exchange that amount at the FMSU office. Each service
member may only exchange up to $250 worth of currency each day, said Samuels.
“For our personnel who get the opportunity to go off base and spend money on the Romanian economy, this system significantly reduces their financial risk,” Samuels said. “Identity theft is a large problem in Romania, so using a personal credit card or debit card is a bad idea. This system allows them to pay and keep their accounts safe.”
There is another benefit to the Eagle Cash system.
“Bringing currency into places like Romania costs our government money and presents a chance for theft,” said 2nd Lt. Rachel M. Kim, the 106th FMSU disbursing agent and a native of New York. “Using this system, there is no need to bring dollars here which saves us money and mitigates the risk of fraud or theft. The Eagle Cash program is a great system all around.”
Service members on MK Airbase wishing to enroll in the Eagle Cash program need only visit the 106th FMSU between the hours of 9 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday-Saturday with their checking account number and routing number. Once they have the card, there are five Eagle Cash Kiosks around MK to load funds and conduct transactions.