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5 ways to make your travel money go further

Holidaymakers need to be savvy to get a great deal


The value of the pound has slipped significantly against the euro this week

The value of the pound has fallen dramatically since Britain voted to leave the European Union last week.

This means that if you’re planning a holiday abroad you now need to be even savvier to get a great deal on your travel money.

Follow our expert tips to ensure you’re not short-changed when exchanging pounds for foreign currency.  

If you’re not a Which? member, and you’d like to get unlimited access to our Money Helpline experts, you can try Which? Money for two months for £1.

1. Spend on plastic instead of cash

Most credit cards will charge a hefty fee if you spend on it or withdraw cash while outside of the UK. However, there are a few cards designed specifically for overseas spending that don’t charge any fees.  

In a recent Which? Money investigation, we revealed that some of these cards provide fantastic value for those travelling through Europe, compared to taking cash. 

The table below highlights some of the best options for spending in Euros, and gives an indication of how much you can expect €1000 to cost you in £s


Best Options for spending €1000
  Spending Option Cost of €1000 Notes
Halifax Clarity or Metro Bank Credit Card £829  
Metro Bank Debit Card £829  
Revolut Prepaid Card £833  
John Lewis Foreign Currency* Ordering currency online (for home delivery or click and collect) £847 Minimum order £300. Free to click and collect. For home delivery, charges apply for orders of less than £500

Table notes:* Best value provider with a nationwide store network, other providers which offer instore collection within central London may offer better rates. Delivery charges for home delivery were included in our calculations. Based on exchange rates gathered in June and July 2016. 


The Which? Money Compare credit card tables let you search hundreds of cards from providers large and small to choose a great deal based on quality of service as well as cost and benefits.

Which? Money Compare table: credit cards for overseas spending – our tables are updated daily

To get the latest rates for foreign exchange, you can try sites such as www.comparecurrency.com.

2. Keep an eye on exchange rates

The pound plunged to a 31-year low against the U.S dollar earlier this week, so if you’re not heading abroad for a while, it might be worth waiting to buy your foreign currency. The value of the pound may recover closer to the time of your holiday, although you shouldn’t discount the possibility of it weakening even further. 

3. Don’t exchange at the airport

Our investigation in April 2016 found that holidaymakers could save up to £122 when exchanging €1,000 by opting for an overseas spending card instead of buying currency at the airport.

If you have to pick up foreign exchange from the airport, pre-order it online, as our research has shown you will get a better deal this way.  

4. Choose your currency exchange provider carefully 

Get quotes from a few currency exchange providers before purchasing foreign currency. Each will offer different exchange rates, and some may charge a fee.

Find out more: travel money – more tips on finding a great exchange rate

5. Hunt down a holiday bargain

Which? can help you find a family holiday where your euros go further. Our city breaks guide rates 47 commonly-visited European cities outside of the UK for value for money. These cities are also rated for the quality of the cultural attractions, food and drink and accommodation.  

More on this…

Which? Limited is an Introducer Appointed Representative of Which? Financial Services Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FRN 527029). Which? Mortgage Advisers and Which? Money Compare are trading names of Which? Financial Services Limited.

Please note that the information in this article is for information purposes only and does not constitute advice. Please refer to the particular terms & conditions of a provider before committing to any financial products.

Categories: Credit cards & loans, Money

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