Although COVID-19 has limited our travelling plans this year, many of us are saving up money for our first trip in the post-pandemic world. However, planning a trip to another country comes with various challenges and potential hardships. From the several stages of packing, to knowing where to visit, it can seem pretty overwhelming. All of these areas can be solved, however, with enough planning beforehand.
How do you tackle the subject of saving money for a trip? Heading to another country that has a foreign currency can add on to your initial worries. If you are going to a country with its own unique currency, you will need to use a currency exchange service. Always consider the exchange rate first and foremost before planning your next move. Ask questions, and you’d be amazed at much money you will end up saving!
It isn’t improbable, and, with a bit of resourcefulness, you can actually save a ton. It just takes a bit of due diligence on your part, before proceeding. Check out these six tips on how to save money in foreign currency before you travel overseas:
1. Exchange Rates
In any endeavour that involves a different currency, the exchange rate will inevitably play a role. You can save money in foreign currency by optimizing your transactions while the exchange rates are favourable. This formula entails evaluating the value of one currency, before converting it to another. The exchange rate is subject to changing due to a multitude of factors. By estimating how this will affect your own circumstances, you can plan ahead.
For example, the time of day in which you choose to convert your currency can be affected by the exchange rate. In addition, converting your currency at home is also key, as it can be cheaper to do. All of these aspects of the exchange rate are relevant, and must be aptly taken into consideration.
2. Method Of Exchange
When you are attempting to get money in a foreign currency, the method you use is just as crucial. Depending on which option you use, you may be able to save significantly. For instance, Forex cards can be incredibly useful for the frequent traveller. Credit cards should be one of your last resorts, however.
If you take out foreign currency while abroad using your credit card, it usually impacts your wallet for the worse. Cash is a great option to use, no matter your situation, as it doesn’t come with the notable drawbacks. Just be sure to take a look at all foreign transaction fees, and plan accordingly.
Contrary to popular belief, banks are not your only option for saving money on foreign currencies. In fact, depending on your branch, you may be subject to more transaction fees and applicable charges. To be less of a burden on your wallet, explore the different currency vendors available to you.
Professional currency exchange offices are a viable option, and may offer significantly lower fees. When timed correctly with the exchange rate, you may end up saving a ton of money. Other options, such as online currency bureaus, can be advantageous to consider as well.
4. Avoid Foreign Kiosks
If you do end up having to withdraw foreign currency while abroad, do your best to avoid tourist kiosks. These kiosks may seem friendly and accessible at first glance, but they can be anything but welcoming. That is because it comes down to their, generally, exorbitantly high fees.
Tourist kiosks are placed in highly-trafficked areas in various destinations as well. The more exposed they are, they more likely it is that they will be utilized. Transactions rates will not be pleasant, and you’ll always end up spending more than what you expected to. Preparing beforehand, as it turns out, will cover your bases!
With respect to online currency transactions, there may also be a better way to save money. Many companies have apps that can be downloaded, that give you the option of advance payments. By making these payments prior to travelling, you could potentially save on some expenses.
Moreover, these services often come with much lower fees than your traditional vendors, such as a bank. It’s not a bad idea to contemplate using them, especially if you want an easy way to save some money. When travelling abroad, getting the most bang for your buck can be possible via the internet!
6. Larger Transactions
Unless you absolutely have to, it is generally recommended to not withdraw foreign funds in large amounts. That is because they usually require a more intricate service, to process your request. Should the situation occur where you have to do this, however, look for options outside of your bank.
As stated previously, professional currency exchange offices are worth exploring. Their services don’t come with restrictions that you would find in your local bank, for instance. In addition, their hours of operation can work with your schedule. For exchanges of this magnitude, putting your reservations to rest is indeed possible.