We’ll be the first to admit that foreign exchange, and knowing you’re getting the best deal, can be kinda tricky. Understanding how exchange rates work, coupled with comparing different fees and rates across providers is the last thing you want to do before jetting off on holiday.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) recognised this and spent some time making a foreign currency conversion services inquiry. They released their findings at the end of August, and as a Travel Money Oz customer, you’ll be stoked to hear that we were one of the top performers (if you’re not a customer yet, it might be worth changing).
Throughout the enquiry, the ACCC made a comparison of fees across several different providers including Travel Money Oz, big banks, independent stores and airport providers.
Foreign exchange fees make it tricky to compare rates. While one store might have a better exchange rate, e.g. 0.86 USD to AUD compared to 0.857, they may add extra fees on top of the transaction. After adding the fees, you could have potentially been better off with the higher rate.
Over a week, the ACCC mystery shopped several different providers to see how much it would cost to purchase $200USD. Travel Money Oz came out second best (by $2), saving around $22 compared to the most expensive provider.
At Travel Money Oz, we are fee and commission-free. That means the cash exchange rate you see advertised in-store and online is the rate you get: no hidden extras, nothing.
Why? Well, we understand that customers are fed up with paying a “loyalty tax” to banks, or a “convenience tax” when exchanging at airports. At the end of the day, we think that tax money is better spent on an extra few cocktails by the pool or a day trip in your favourite location. We’re travellers too, we get you, and we understand how important it is to make your money go further on holiday.
All things considered, though, you are the customer, and it is in your best interest to shop around to ensure you are getting the best deal possible. Here are a few tips to ensure you leave well informed with plenty of cash in your back pocket.
- Compare the total price. When comparing, be sure to account for the exchange rate as well as any applicable fees or commissions.
- Compare at the same time. Exchange rates fluctuate every day, so make sure you compare prices on the same day around the same time to ensure you are getting the most relevant comparison.
- Loyalty can cost you. We know you’ve been with your bank for a while, but they know that too and can charge you for it. While they may appear to be the easy option, they are certainly not the best value.
- Avoid exchanging at the airport. This is a blanket rule and will save you bulk $$$. Airport exchange companies know you have left it to the last minute and have no other option but to exchange with them. As a result, they offer some pretty questionable exchange rates. Make an effort to exchange a few weeks before departure and then glide through the airport stress-free.
- Don’t forget about our Best Price Guarantee. Done your comparison and found that Travel Money Oz doesn’t have the best deal (it happens, not everyone is perfect…)? No worries, bring us the quote on the same day and we will beat it for you. Our foreign currency experts will ensure you have the best deal and leave equipped with a travel money solution tailored to your holiday.
Each year Australian consumers purchase the equivalent of over AUD 40billion in foreign currency. That’s a lot of money to be wasting on a bad deal. Make the most of your exchange and visit one of our stores today. Our team will be more than happy to answer any questions and assist with all of your travel money needs.
This blog is provided for information only and does not take into consideration your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider whether the information and suggestions contained in any blog entry are appropriate for you, having regard to your own objectives, financial situation and needs. While we take reasonable care in providing the blog, we give no warranties or representations that it is complete or accurate, or is appropriate for you. We are not liable for any loss caused, whether due to negligence or otherwise, arising from the use of, or reliance on, the information and/or suggestions contained in this blog. Terms and conditions apply to Best Price Guarantee. See www.travelmoneyoz.com/best-price-guarantee for more details.