Hotel, check. Flights, check. Suitcase, check. Travel money? Compare your options with our table below, or scroll further down to find out more. Don’t get ripped off at the airport, sort your travel money today before you jet off!
It’s worth bearing in mind that while the traditional way of getting travel money is all well and good, there’s a range of digital apps that can make the process even simpler. These include Starling, Revolut and N26. If these new age solutions float your boat, you can read our guide to learn more about them.
Travellers cheques were once a widely used form of travel money, but they’re going the way of the dinosaur. You can weigh up whether they’re worth your time below:
How a travellers cheque could still work for you
Safe and secure. Travellers cheques are an extremely secure method to spend money overseas. They can be easily replaced if lost or stolen.
Things to keep in mind
Cost. You might be charged a purchase fee when you first pick up your travellers cheque.
Acceptance. Travellers cheques are generally accepted less often than Visa or Mastercards.
Ease of use. Travellers cheques can be bulky and awkward to carry. Plus, you’ll have to go to the effort of getting them cashed rather than having immediate access to your cash like you would with a card.
Frequently asked questions
The exchange rates between different currencies fluctuate constantly, and vary between providers. Generally, prepaid cards will have cheaper exchange rates than those offered by banks.
Banks who have international ATM alliances will allow you to withdraw cash for free. Global lenders like Citi and HSBC have a number of ATMs worldwide, and Citi do not charge for international ATM withdrawals. So if you’re a Citi customer looking to use your card overseas, head to a Citi ATM and all you’ll pay for the withdrawal is the currency conversion fee.
If you have a travel card that has an inactivity fee (a fee that’s charged every month when your account is inactive for a period of time), you will lose any remaining funds on the card, but your account won’t go into a negative balance. Once the card has no funds left on it, this fee will not be charged.
Usually the most practical solutions aren’t the most appealing to the eye. Travel money belts keep your money and important valuables/ documents safely tucked in a compartment under your shirt to minimise the risk of theft and loss. If security and peace of mind is your first priority when travelling and you don’t mind a piece of fabric strapped around your waist, then investing in a travel money belt will protect your travel money cards and important valuables.
Charlie Barton is a publisher at Finder. He specialises in banking and investments products, including banking apps, current accounts, share-dealing platforms and stocks and shares ISAs. Charlie has a first-class degree from the London School of Economics, and in his spare time enjoys long walks on the beach.
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