When it comes to finding a favourable exchange rate for your money when you buy vacation cash on the high street, here are some expert advice.


When travelling to a new nation, it is critical to pack some local currency in addition to your typical travel documents. Cash is the only form of payment that you can be certain every store will accept, but plastic is widely used and convenient; nonetheless, you will most likely need money in order to take a taxi, bus, or train when you reach at your destination.

If you acquire your foreign currency from the wrong site, however, it could end up costing you. This is because you will receive a lower amount of euros, dollars, or yen for each pound that you convert, and as a result, you will have less money to spend on your vacation. Here are some of our best recommendations for getting the most out of your currency exchange transaction if you plan to purchase travel money over the counter.

However, before making a purchase of foreign currency, you might want to consider placing an order for the currency online, as previous research has shown that consumers who do so frequently benefit from the most favourable conversion rates.

1. Refrain from changing currency at the airport.

Airport currency exchange desks do not typically give the best conversion rates, and one may argue that this is because they are surrounded by a “captive audience” of vacationers who have no choice but to use their services. Although getting ready for your trip and packing your bags might be stressful activities, you shouldn’t put off acquiring your money for travel until the very last minute. According to research conducted by Which?, exchanging money at the airport may result in much higher fees than utilising a competitive high street business in another location.

2. If you shop online, use caution.

There are several firms that let you order foreign currency online that let you pick up your cash at the airport. This not only allows you to collect your travel money just before you board the plane, which is really convenient, but it also means that you should get a better exchange rate. However, as currency exchange is not a regulated service, there is no security for your money in the event that the online currency supplier declares bankruptcy. This means that it is possible that you will not receive your money back. Both vacationers and people travelling for business could be impacted by this.

3. Do some comparison shopping for international currency

There are many different bureaus de change, and not all of them will use the same money exchange rates or have the same fee structures. Because the purchase of foreign currency may be subject to a fee at some establishments but not at others, you need to calculate the overall cost of exchanging your cash before you give it over. It is not as difficult as it may appear; all you need to do is inquire just how much foreign currency you will get in return for the pounds sterling that you are looking to convert at each retail location. Prior to exchanging your money, it is in your best interest to first do a price comparison of the various bargains that are currently being offered by a number of different organisations. You should also avoid using high street banks if possible. Which? According to research conducted, banks do not often provide the greatest exchange rates, and they may only provide currency exchange services to their already established clientele.

4. Get more value for your money by engaging in competitive currency exchange rate haggling.

If you are comfortable enough to haggle, certain bureaus de change will adjust the exchange rates that they give, and they may even agree to match the discounts that are being offered by their competitors.

5. Foreign currency purchases can be made using either cash or a debit card.

If you pay for your foreign currency using a credit card, you should be prepared to pay additional fees because credit card companies often consider this type of purchase to be a “cash advance” and hence assess a cost for the service. Of course, you could dodge these fees simply by paying for your foreign currency with cash or a debit card.

Take precautions when transporting cash from another country.

When travelling with and holding foreign currency at your vacation rental, don’t forget to keep safety in mind at all times. You should never take more money out with you than your travel insurance policy would cover in the event that it was lost or stolen. Instead, you should think about keeping it in a money belt, and you should make sure that any cash you leave behind at your hotel room or apartment is stored in a safe.