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The 12 Travel Money Tips of Christmas

9th December 2022
The silly season is here. Time for cosy nights by the fire, snow angels in ugly Christmas sweaters and the smell of cinnamon in the air… Just kidding. This is Australia, and unless you are heading overseas for a white Christmas, the festive season consists of humid nights under the aircon, avoiding the bindis playing backyard cricket and the smell of mango in the air. 
For many, the Christmas break brings a long awaited international holiday. No doubt the last few months have been spent frantically saving for your trip in between buying a never-ending list of Secret Santa gifts. 
Make these hard earned savings go the extra mile with a few tips from Travel Money Oz (and remember that chocolate is always a cop out when it comes to Secret Santa). 

On the 1st day of Christmas, Travel Money Oz showed me… that destination research is key!

A little knowledge can go a long way when in a new country. Just like Ol’ Saint Nick does his research for the naughty and nice list, you should research both your holiday destination and what’s happening with foreign currencies. Not only will it keep you out of trouble by avoiding some cultural no-nos when overseas, it will also mean you’re in the know when it comes to getting the most out of your travel money.

On the 2nd day of Christmas, Travel Money Oz gave me… the best price guarantee!*

It says it in the title – find the best price from an Aussie competitor and we will beat it*. More travel money in your back pocket = more poolside cocktails in Thailand as you wind down from the stress of present shopping at 11pm on Christmas Eve before a huge family Christmas lunch where Uncle Barry had slightly too much eggnog… Ho-Ho-Help me, please. 

On the 3rd day of Christmas, Travel Money Oz told me... that getting a currency card is easy!

Things on the naughty list: 
  • Hidden transaction fees
  • Airport exchange rates
  • Grandma after that eggnog 
  • People that walk really slow in shopping centres
Avoid hidden transaction fees and airport exchange rates by grabbing a Travel Money Oz Currency Pass for your next holiday. You can load up to 10 currencies, lock in your rate and use it anywhere Mastercard is accepted. Plus we’re pretty transparent about what you’ll be charged, so you won’t be hit with any hidden nasties whilst overseas. 
I have no idea what to do about Uncle Barry though. You’re on your own there.  

On the 4th day of Christmas, Travel Money Oz taught me… how to save money!

Everyone is looking for ways to save money during the festive season, especially if you are heading overseas. 
Little things like choosing accommodation that includes breakfast (buffets > everything), buy snacks from the supermarket and re-use a waterbottle (save some money and the turtles). Look for restaurants that have free Wi-Fi to avoid gnarly data roaming charges when posting your candid travel snaps, and take advantage of public transport. 


On the 5th day of Christmas, Travel Money Oz taught me… how to avoid costs that are sneaky!

Every country has hidden costs beyond flights and accommodation that should be budgeted for. Tipping culture is massive in many countries and can often take travellers by surprise. Other countries charge you to use a public toilet (always have spare change on hand). Finally, if you are headed to Europe and need your caffeine hit, you may be charged more for sitting down to enjoy your morning brew.

On the 6th day of Christmas, Travel Money Oz told me… that exchanging at the airport is silly!

Don’t be that person exchanging currency last minute at the airport. Airport money exchangers are the equivalent of Scrooge - happy to take as much of your money as possible, but not so happy to give you even remotely competitive exchange rates. 
Plan ahead and visit one of our stores before you go, and pick up your travel money when it suits you. Convenient, less stressful and you will leave with more money in your back pocket. 

On the 7th day of Christmas, Travel Money Oz showed me… how to hide my money discreetly.

Nothing ruins your Christmas spirit more than having your money or valuables taken whilst overseas. Be clever with how you distribute and carry your cash and cards. Don’t keep all of your cash in the one spot, distribute it between bags, pockets and even your travel companions. 

On the 8th day of Christmas, Travel Money Oz gave me… tips to be scam free!

You’ve finally landed in your dream destination, unpacked your bags, and started enjoying your first holiday cocktail, only to realise that you have been sold counterfeit notes… that’s a not so Merry Christmas.

Money exchanging scams can be quite common in some countries, so we recommend getting your cash sorted before you go. If this isn’t possible, watch out for vendors when they are counting your money and always double check the legitimacy of the notes. 

On the 9th day of Christmas, Travel Money Oz taught me… that in some countries haggling is key!

Depending on the country you visit, haggling is often expected and, if you know how to do it properly, can become a fun part of your international experience.

When it comes to haggling we have three key tips:

  1. Be bold: Even if you aren’t feeling confident just fake it till you make it!
  2. Aim for win – win: Haggling should be beneficial for both the buyer and the seller. If either party gets ripped off it takes the fun out of the process.
  3. Know when to walk away: if your negotiations not going anywheredon't be afraid to walk away. You never know, turning your back might drop the price that little bit more.

Keen on some more insight? We have a whole blog dedicated to the art of haggling.

On the 10th day of Christmas, Travel Money Oz showed me… how to tip appropriately.

To tip or not to tip? That is the question. It is always worthwhile to brush up on your destinations cultural etiquette which includes when, how much and how to tip.

Hankering for that pumpkin pie in an American diner? It’s polite to tip between 15 – 20% of your total bill. Parched and in need of an eggnog in South Africa (can neither confirm nor deny if eggnog can be found here)? Definitely leave a 10 – 15% tip for your service. Depending on your destination, tipping can very quickly add up so it is worthwhile including in your holiday budget. 

On the 11th day of Christmas, Travel Money Oz told me… to sell back leftover currency!

Bringing foreign bank notes back home? Don’t save them for a rainy day! Instead sell them back for Aussie dollars and voila – some more cash to help ease those post-holiday blues (maybe buy another Christmas pudding?).

On the 12th day of Christmas, Travel Money Oz inspired me… to donate to charity!

Have some international shrapnel floating around in the bottom of your bag? Don’t let it weigh you down; donate it to charity! Travel Money Oz supports UNICEF’s work through ‘Small Change, Big Difference’. Not only will you be getting rid of loose change, but you will also be helping protect children around the world - talk about Christmas Spirit!

Looking for some more advice before you jet off? Speak to one our friendly experts today!

First published in December 2017. 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 use of, or reliance on, the information and/or suggestions contained in this blog.