Exchanging money in foreign countries

You are a tourist in a foreign country and you have always doubted whether to exchange your money in advance or not. Here are some useful tips for exchanging money in foreign countries.

Between commissions, credit card surcharges, ATM fees and goodness knows what else, you’ll almost always have to pay a little extra for the privilege of exchanging one currency for another. But how can you minimize these expenses and get the best exchange rate when traveling in a foreign country? You want to make every dollar count and have probably shopped around for the best-priced airfare, hotel deals and packages, so why throw away money on exorbitant commission charges and poor exchange rates? Read on for our top tips for exchanging money and find out how to stretch your money further on your next international trip.

Know the Exchange Rate

This is the most obvious point, but it is so often overlooked. How often do you have absolutely no idea what a good deal would even be? Do your homework and make sure that you know approximately what the exchange rate is. This is easily done on a currency conversion site such as XE.com. Keep in mind that any posted exchange rates will always be lower than those listed at a money exchanger or bank. The exchange rates posted online do not include commissions or fees and are usually exchanged in extremely high volumes. If you’re taking an extended trip, check the rate periodically to stay abreast of any major changes. To stay up to date with the exchange rate for your currency please use our currency converter on our homepage (www.crownchange.com)

Location Matters

Remember that all exchange booths are not equal. It is wise to avoid currency exchange booths in popular tourist destinations like airports and train stations because they rarely offer good exchange rates.

Commission Counts

Often our instinct is to avoid the exchange booths that have a commission charge. But don’t assume that a sign saying “commission free” automatically means you’re going to get a great rate. It can often be a better deal to pay the commission charge in exchange for a better exchange rate. The only way you can tell this is by doing the calculation yourself. Most smartphones have a calculator built in, so it is quick and easy to check if you’re getting a fair price. Our tip is not to rule out establishments that do charge commission, as their rates may in fact be more competitive. Avoid exchange offices with the sign “Best rates for sale” or similar. Always look for or ask for the buy rate.

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Credit Card Use

Be sure to contact your bank or credit card provider before you head overseas and start using your card. Their fraud teams may spot the card being used abroad and diligently freeze the account – thinking it to be suspicious activity. Although this is rectifiable, it can be an inconvenience you could do without, so avoid it by letting them know your travel plans. Also, be sure to check what charges you will face for using the card abroad. They may charge a couple of percent for an international transaction and additional currency conversion fees. You will likely have one card that offers you a more favorable deal, so by identifying this you can save yourself those extra dollars.

Getting a Good Deal

So, by following these simple tips you can save money on your currency exchange and get the best deal possible. Arm yourself with the information – the most basic of which being what the approximate exchange rate is. Be sure not to leave your exchange to the last minute. The very worst place to change your money is at the airport. Airports are notorious for charging high commissions and offering poor exchange rates because they have a captive customer base of last minute exchangers. Poor planning could literally see you wasting tens or hundreds of dollars, so plan ahead, shop around and make your dollars go even further overseas. To be sure you are getting most value for your money when in Sunny Beach, visit the offices of Crown Change. You can easily find them by using our mobile app and looking for the Crown.

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