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Travel Money & Foreign Exchange Tips guide

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Flights, Currency & Car Hire
86 replies 59K views
MSE_Helen_SMSE_Helen_S MSE Staff
99 posts
Seventh Anniversary Combo Breaker I've been Money Tipped! Best Buy Bear
MSE Staff
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Flights, Currency & Car Hire
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Thanks folks,
«13456789

Replies

  • jimlad68jimlad68 Forumite
    38 posts
    We are told that Halifax Clarity card is the best way to get Foreign Currency

    1- is when you are in the foreign country, you can't do it before!

    2- I was going to use my Halifax Clarity card abroad in the USA, but could not find a machine that did not charge it's own fee, so this rather negates the savings of 0%, and one then has to subsequently pay interest on the cash. I've not done the calculations but does that still make it cheaper than buying currency before you go.
    Is there a way to find cash dispensers that don't charge thheir own fee?

    Just interested
  • Kernow666Kernow666 Forumite
    3.5K posts
    I've been Money Tipped!
    ✭✭✭✭
    i have used my clairty card when i was last in the US , i did find some free to use ATMS in las vegas & LA but yes the majority still charge $1-$3 per transaction so i ended up taking out $500 then using the card for larger purchases , even when with paying the interest when i got back home i was still 5cents a dollar better off
    "If I know I'm going crazy, I must not be insane"
  • jimlad68jimlad68 Forumite
    38 posts
    cheers Kernow666, I had heard there were some free to use ATMs, but I never found any. I did ask Halifax before I went, but they had no idea. I don't think Halifax (Lloyds) have any foreign branches so must be pot luck, although I suspect it would be in a bank or credit union etc. Mind, when I tried to use an HSBC card in a HSBC bank in the USA some years ago, they were going to charge me just the same as if I went anywhere else.
  • RobJuthRobJuth Forumite
    3 posts
    Hi,
    Any ideas?
    I have a Halifax clarity card which I usually use in France BUT - in Sept I needs 1500 euros in cash to pay for Gite rental. Suggestions on the best way to do this would be welcome.
    Thanks
  • They won't let you pay by credit card beforehand? Although we didn't have to pay for our accommodation in Italy this year until checking out, as the exchange rate was so good I arranged with the properties to pay in advance.

    Failing that if you can take the cash out in France using the Clarity Card then you won't get charged a fee and a tip I used in France last year was to keep track of the balance on the card and paid it off as I went along rather than waiting to pay in full at the end of the month and racking up a whole month's worth of interest, as you only get charged interest on the days the balance is outstanding.
  • RobJuthRobJuth Forumite
    3 posts
    Thanks mattjnash but I have a £500 a day limit on the card and need to pay in two days, I also need money for fuel, tolls, hotel and meals. Leaves me a bit short.
  • RobJuth wrote: »
    Thanks mattjnash but I have a £500 a day limit on the card and need to pay in two days, I also need money for fuel, tolls, hotel and meals. Leaves me a bit short.

    £500 per day via ATM? You can still use the card for purchases.

    Don't want to state the obvious, but...get another card. If in or around London, get a Metro Bank debit card. If not, get a Kalixa Pay Prepaid Mastercard(if you can get a referral, you'll get a £5 rebate).
    Take the max out via an ATM each time and you only lose 0.8% of the full Mastercard rate after all charges. Purchases offer the same rate as the Clarity.
    So together they give you a total of £800 per day via ATM and you've still got the opportunity to use them for purchases.
  • briskbrisk Forumite
    39 posts
    Is there a better debit card than Metro Bank for using your card outside of Europe?
  • GloomendoomGloomendoom Forumite
    16.5K posts
    brisk wrote: »
    Is there a better debit card than Metro Bank for using your card outside of Europe?

    Norwich and Peterborough BS

    And not forgetting the rather controversial Travelex Supercard.
    Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.” - Mark Twain
  • edited 4 July 2015 at 12:21PM
    adindasadindas Forumite
    4.8K posts
    Ninth Anniversary 1,000 Posts
    ✭✭✭✭
    edited 4 July 2015 at 12:21PM
    jimlad68 wrote: »
    We are told that Halifax Clarity card is the best way to get Foreign Currency

    It is not true. It should read ...
    Halifax Clarity card is ONE of the best way to get Foreign Currency ..

    If you could get a zero fee debitcard such as from Metro Bank (for EU), N&P zero fee debit card, Santander Zero (no more avaible), Cumberland BS (mostly for people living around those areas). It is better to withdraw cash using this cards as you do not need to pay any interest or do not need a hassle to pay immediately to avoid small interest.

    Also Travellex Supercard is better than Halifax clarity Card (apart from the fact that it is a Visa card)
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