You might be thinking about going on another trip now that the coronavirus is being treated successfully in many regions of the world. Find out where to get the greatest conversion rate for your money before you leave for the airport to take a ticket abroad.
To have cash to tip taxi drivers or baggage handlers at the airport or to purchase a coffee or lunch, some travelers prefer to exchange their US dollars for euros or other currencies at their local bank. Planning beforehand will help travelers who are visiting multiple countries or currencies avoid the hassle of frequent currency exchanges.
Train stations, airports, hotels, and tourist districts are the most expensive but most handy and accessible locations to convert money.
The finest locations to convert your money into local currency both before and after your trip are listed below.
Best Location for Currency Exchange Before and After Traveling
Even while the costs may only be a few dollars, they soon mount up, especially if you are traveling for a longer period of time.
When you have a checking or savings account with them, credit unions and banks will convert your dollars into a foreign currency before and after your trip. You won’t have to worry about attempting to spend your last few euros before your trip is over because you can exchange them for dollars when you come home.
Best Checking Accounts
Some financial institutions, including Citibank and Bank of America, may not charge a fee and offer options like executing the transaction online or even mailing you the money. Most banks demand you to pick up the money in person at a branch if you need sums of $1,000 or more.
To find out which bank is providing the best exchange rate, check the rates online.
Call your neighborhood bank to verify whether they have the currency you’re looking for first. According to Vaneesha Boney Dutra, an associate professor of finance at the Daniels College of Business at the University of Denver, not all branches exchange currencies, and exchange rates between banks might differ significantly.
As banks add a profit margin to these transactions, she advises, “don’t expect to get the conversion rate you saw when you Googled it. This will diminish the actual amount of foreign currency you will receive per U.S. dollar.”
Currency Exchange Procedure
To find out if the currency you want to exchange is offered, start by checking with your bank online. Your bank might not be able to access the money if you are traveling to a nation that has limitations on its currency due to political or economic concerns. Only the banks and ATMs in many African and Eastern European nations are able to exchange foreign currency.
The following is a list:
Make sure a bank or credit union will accept foreign currency and ask about fees by getting in touch with them.
Use your bank, credit union, or websites like https://www.xe.com to get exchange rates.
Make sure the bank’s exchange rate is fair by checking it.
Make plans for delivery or pickup.
When traveling abroad, the adage “cash is king” is undoubtedly true, according to Dutra. “Your taxi driver in Medellin will want Colombian pesos when you arrive. If you bring foreign cash and a credit card with good travel terms, you’ll find doing business while traveling abroad to be pretty manageable.”
Where Can You Exchange Elsewhere?
It’s a good idea to get more money once you’ve arrived at your destination so you can pay for meals and purchases at mom-and-pop shops.
The ATMs of your bank, or those that are part of its network, as well as exchange companies like Travelex, are popular choices. Utilizing businesses like Wise, which specializes in currency transfers and provides a debit card, is an additional choice. According to Nicholas Lembo, head of growth for the Americas at Wise, the company lets you retain more than 40 currencies on your account, so if you travel regularly, you may switch to any currency you need.
According to Dirk Schrader, global vice president, security research at New Net Technologies, a provider of cybersecurity and compliance software, see if your credit or debit card provider offers extra security features like sending a text message when a transaction is completed or requiring additional authorizations when a transaction’s value is higher than usual. These features can help prevent fraud.
Alternatives to Currency Exchange
You can avoid converting money by using your credit cards, prepaid cards, or even U.S. cash for transactions. Even tiny establishments at a street food festival or night market accept electronic payments, and nations like Mexico or French Polynesia also accept US dollars.
You should check with your credit card provider in advance to find out what rates are offered. Your best option is frequently to use a credit card to pay for lodging, meals, and rental cars as they also provide purchase protection and extra reward points for use at various establishments.