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How to buy travel money online

How to buy travel money online
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Just because your travel options are limited right now, it doesn’t mean that you can’t make plans for when the coronavirus lockdown is lifted. So while you are stuck at home dreaming about your next holiday, it might be worth thinking about how to buy travel money online.

Many of the high street outlets are currently closed due to the lockdown, so walking into a bureau de change is probably not an option right now. Shopping around and buying your travel money online means you can get it sooner rather than later at the best available exchange rate. If you are thinking about leaving it to the last minute and buying your foreign currency at the airport – don’t, because they typically offer some of the worst rates available.

Things to think about ahead of time

Online providers will always have a plentiful supply of currencies such as US dollars and Euros, but if you require a less common currency then you may need to give the provider more notice since it may take more time. If you are unsure whether or not a typical online provider will need more notice, you can call them and ask.

Think about how much currency you want to buy. Most providers specify a minimum order and will charge a delivery fee depending on the amount, so this may influence your decision.

Don’t over order if you are uncomfortable with receiving a large sum of cash through the post. One way around this is to order a smaller amount of cash and use this together with a travel credit card that doesn’t charge transaction or cash withdrawal fees. That way you will have some cash when you arrive and access to more when needed.

Where to buy travel money online

Most of the reputable providers have an online presence, but if you want the best deal then it’s a good idea to use a price comparison site. This will take time and patience but will save you money in the long run.

One such example is Compare Holiday Money. This site, as you might tell from the name, compares hundreds of exchange rates and currency deals from a range of UK-based suppliers.

The main things to check for include the foreign currency commission, delivery charge and minimum order for delivery. Many firms offer 0% commission but will charge for delivery, so it is worth calculating the fees before you make your choice.

Choose your payment method carefully

Once you have selected a provider, you will need to decide how to buy travel money online. If you use the wrong credit or debit card then you could be charged interest or extra charges. Debit cards tend to be better in terms of lower charges, but it is worth calling your bank before you make the final transaction.

Safety and security

Safety and security are major considerations when thinking about how to buy travel money online. Most of the sites promoted by price comparison sites tend to be reputable and user-friendly, but do take your time when using them.

Be sure to double check your details before making the final purchase, and if you have access to a printer it’s a good idea to get a hard copy of the electronic receipt. If you don’t have access to a printer, most companies will send you an electronic receipt via email.

Most companies will deliver within two working days of you placing the order. Make a note of the delivery date and time in case there is a problem. They will not deliver to any other address apart from the customer’s home and will require a signature on receipt.


Buying travel money online can be time consuming, but if it saves you money in the long run then it’s worth it. Especially when you have more money to spend on your long-awaited holiday!

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