Travelling abroad when your own country has a different currency, means exchanging your funds for the host country funds. How do you do that? There are many ways, some more cost effective than others. The list below is aimed at the UK market, but there are sure to be similar deals in whatever part of the World you are visiting form.
- At the airport/ Port. Usually the most expensive ways to receive your holiday money as they have you over a barrel at your place of departure.
- Bank/ Travel Agent/ Post Office. These institutions will usually charge a commission and give a lower conversion rate. Sometimes they will give you "commission free", but you then receive an even lower conversion rate.
- Credit card or debit card. Depending on who you bank with, the debit/ credit card can be loaded with a percentage of your spend, plus a one off fee per transaction. There are some specialist cards which can offer better deals. Starling Bank offers a debit card with no fees for overseas usage. The Halifax Clarity card is a travel credit card. No overseas fees on transactions and you receive the Mastercard rate on the day. The Barclaycard Rewards card is the one we use the most. With this card, there are no fees and you receive the Visa rate on the day. The good thing is that you can use this card in an ATM and, so long as you repay in full at your statement date, there are no fees or cash interest as you would receive on a normal card.
- If you have a bank account in the country you are visiting, a funds transfer company similar to Wise below (affiliate link, but we also use them monthly). Funds are transferred swiftly to the recipient account.