Family Holidays…yes please!
Whether you love Brexit or loathe it, one thing is clear – it’s had a negative impact on the pound to Euro exchange rate. British families are going away with less money in the kitty than they have done for years.
But sulking isn’t going to suddenly improve the exchange rate so we need to be pragmatic and shop around for the best deal out there to maximise our holiday budget.
We’re big fans of the WeSwap prepaid travel card. Not least because it’s up to 90% cheaper than alternatives like the Post Office.
Sign up online and the card will arrive within 3 days. You then load the card with pounds using a debit card load or bank transfer, and exchange into one of 17 different currencies.
When you’re away on your jollies, the card acts just like a debit card does here: either withdraw from an ATM or pay over the counter. It’s supported by MasterCard so you’re in good hands.
But how do the other options stack up? You might have been going to the Post Office for years but the question you need to ask yourself is why? If it means less money to spend abroad, it seems a little silly.
Other Foreign Currency Options Weighed Up…
1. Don’t, whatever you do, exchange money at the airport
You might have been too busy getting the kids’ bags backed (as well as your own), getting Max into kennels or clearing out the fridge to sort out your currency but don’t under any conditions – do it at the airport.
Airport bureaus reliably provide the very poorest rates on foreign currency. As in, 11% bad. If you take £1000 cash to exchange that means they’ll be taking over £100 off you for the pleasure. That’s a meal out, a car hire for the day, or ice cream. Lots of it.
2. Using your debit card could prove an expensive convenience
Sure, your debit card is already there, sat in your purse saying “use me, what’s the worst that could happen”.
The worse that could happen is bad. Just as one example, and it’s only one, is Halifax will charge you £1.50 for each point of sale transaction and £1.50 for every ATM withdrawal. Add a 2.75% transaction charge every time too and things are getting Expensive.
3. Don’t take a plastic packet of Euros – it’s not the nineties!
Many people still bob into town to the “good old Post Office” or trusty “Marks & Sparks”, but why? Because of the kind of savvy branding that makes us place so much trust in them.
It must be that, because they’re more expensive than other options and usually around 5% more expensive than prepaid cards.
Maybe it’s the convince, then? No, because you can order a prepaid card online and it’ll get delivered to your door. You can also manage everything on your smartphone and load up more money if you need to.
4. Politics got us here, don’t switch off from it
Finally, it makes sense to keep an eye on politics. Brexit had an awful impact on the pound rate. That misery was compounded (in the foreign exchange market at least) by Donald Trump’s election in the US.
Be aware that something like a budget announcement or an impending appointment at the bank of England, for example, can impact the world’s currency markets.
We’re not asking you to see into the future, if you could do that you could make money from predicting currency moves – but err on the side of caution.
Exchange your money before a big announcement and you know where you stand.
So there you have it, we’re not suggesting that holiday are cancelled for the year or
anything like that, we just believe it’s more important than ever to shop around and be a little more considered.