Best Ways to Currency Exchange While Traveling

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Be sure to get the most out of your money while traveling abroad by having a better understanding of foreign currency exchange.

There are many resources to swap cash and make transactions overseas, but many include heavy fees or limitations. Make sure you understand all the benefits and drawbacks of each choice for currency exchange, so after your trip, you can avoid dealing with any unforeseen charges.

Your best choice may not always be the simplest way to exchange currency. Before leaving for a trip or after arriving at your destination, you can choose to exchange your currency, but choosing the correct one depends on where you exchange your currency.

There are many countries including India that do not accept foreign currencies and this is why you should always have the currency of the country that you are visiting.

Where Can I do Currency Exchange?


Before you exchange your money you must understand that there are many options available and you should only choose the best option available.

At INRXRATE you can check the live exchange rates that are most accurate and without any extra fee. Below are the few currency exchange options that are most commonly used.

1.    Airport Kiosks and Foreign Exchange Desks:

While it may sound convenient to swap currency at the airport, it is better to avoid it, given the outrageously high exchange fees.

Airport kiosks will charge up to 20 percent in fees and have a slightly lower exchange rate compared to banks and private exchange firms, according to previous data.

At all costs, the exchange of currency at the airport should be avoided and should be used only for emergencies.

Most of the airport currency exchange stores are like high street “currency exchange” stores in tourist areas and they give you a consumer exchange rate and not the actual banking currency exchange rate.

It must be understood that the bank rate of exchange is always better than the consumer rate of exchange.

2.    Credit Cards

When you travel abroad, you should always check if your card works internationally or not. Only carry your card if it works and if so then check the potential fees that may be applied while abroad.

Few credit card companies include currency exchange fees, transaction fees, or service charges on cash advances. Overall, credit card companies get the best rates and can offer you an currency exchange rate closest to the official rate.

3.    Debit Cards

Global transaction fees and overseas ATM fees are charged by many banks on debit cards. For cash withdrawals, make sure to only use debit cards. If any problem arises from a purchase made using a debit card, your account is straight away debited, and it may take anywhere from a few days to over a week for the mistaken charge to be corrected.

4.    Foreign Currency Cards

Like credit or debit cards, prepaid foreign currency cards work the same. They are preloaded with a fixed currency of the particular destination, which is deducted when it is used by the traveler. However, many fees and restrictions may apply, such as withdrawal and inactivity fees and withdrawal minimums and limits.

5.    Traveler’s Checks

Traveler checks act like US dollars; you need to find somewhere that will swap the local currency for the traveler’s check. But unlike cash, if lost or stolen, traveler’s checks come with the added security of being replaced. However, they may not be approved by certain organizations due to the diminishing use of traveler checks.

6.    Private Money Exchange

To have the best exchange rate, private money exchange companies, or currency exchange companies frequently compete with each other, so you have a fair chance of having a higher exchange rate. Depending on the supplier, certain fees apply and vary.

Also, bear in mind that in small towns, these businesses are less common, so be sure to complete your transactions before heading out of major cities.

Ways to Avoid Foreign Exchange Fees

When exchanging currency, foreign exchange fees may seem unavoidable, but these options may help you avoid paying hefty fees.

1.    No Foreign Transaction Fee Credit Cards

Unlike the current credit cards, which charge 3 percent of every dollar spent abroad on average, there are no foreign transaction fees on most international credit cards. Try to buy those cards when you plan to visit abroad.

2.    International Travel Cards

Go for overseas travel cards or Travel Money Cards for cheap cash withdrawals. International travel cards are cheaper than credit cards or debit cards, with a certain balance prepaid, meaning you can make transactions or withdraw cash while you travel. Some also have the option of more than one currency being held.

3.    Local Banks

Not only is it easier to exchange currency at local banks, but it is also much less costly than exchanging money at airports or hotels. They also prefer to offer a good currency exchange rate.

4.    NO to Cash Advances

Using your credit card as an ATM card requires you to pay a cash advance fee in addition to the cash advance APR, which can both add up to large sums.

5.    YES to Local Currency

Always exchange currency before you visit any country abroad. You should never pay in USD for anything purchased overseas.

The reason is that there may be many hidden transaction and conversion fees that will amount to much more than charging your purchase in the local currency. So you should purchase and pay in the local currency only.

6.    Use Your Debit Card When You Land

Always inform your bank of your travels in advance so that they do not block your cards when you swipe them internationally. You should always use your debit card for money withdrawals. Taking out one big withdrawal means you only get hit with one ATM fee if any.

7.    Use Clever New Money Apps

You should be happy to know that today there are many new apps and banking products that allow you to take money out abroad without any fees. You should keep checking this with your bank and should go for one that suits you.

Bottom line

Today there are many options available for money exchange but airport exchange remains costly among all. Try not to use them unless there is any cash emergency for you.

Before you choose any exchange method try to check the accurate exchange currency value at INRXRATE.


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