Should I Exchange Money Before I Go?
Planning a trip abroad takes a lot of time, you’ve to organise visas if the country you’re travelling to requires them, book flights, choose accommodation and get to the airport on time to ensure you don’t miss your plane. Moreover, you need foreign currency when you get to your destination. If you don’t plan, it will cost you a lot of money when you get back home.
Avoid the Airport > Many travellers make the mistake of exchanging money at the airport because they’ve forgotten to do it at home. Exchanging money at the airport is a terrible idea, they always charge more than your local money exchange bureau. The reason for this is that they know there’ll be plenty of travellers who have forgotten to exchange money and the airport is simply their last option. Even if they charge no commission or fees, they’ll still get you with ridiculous conversion rates. If you are in one of Australia’s major cities and you need travel money exchange in Melbourne or Sydney, it is always best to get it done there. Some will offer you no commissions or fees and a great exchange rate to match.
Currency Exchange Counters > The best thing to do before going abroad is to visit a local currency exchange booth and get foreign currency for your trip. You should do some research before you choose an exchange office, this will help you to understand the current market, so you get the best rate of conversion. You’ll need access to cash the moment you arrive, so getting money from an exchange counter ensures you have foreign currency, just in case you’ve a problem accessing your bank. Currency exchange offices offer the best deals when changing money, they are a lot quicker than banks and you can have your money almost immediately. The main advantage of using them is that they specialise in one thing, foreign money exchange, unlike banks. You can order money online or visit an exchange office and convert your cash in an instant.
Banks > Once you’ve arrived at your destination, you can then start to use your ATM card when the money you converted at home runs out. The great thing about exchanging money before you get is that if your bank card doesn’t work, you aren’t stuck with no funds. You’ve been smart enough to exchange money at a local bureau giving you time to fix the problem with your ATM card. You must remember that your bank will charge you a flat rate conversion fee on every withdrawal coupled with a flat fee levied by the foreign bank you choose to take money from. Google the exchange rate to ensure your bank isn’t ripping you off.
It is always better to exchange some of your money in a local currency exchange office before you leave the country, that way you’ve access to the local currency the moment you arrive. You should use multiple methods of payment and split each one up. Don’t go around with cash, debit and credit cards in the one bag.