Compare our best travel money deals

Get maximum value for your travel money

Compare exchange rates, fees and order limits to make sure you get the best travel money deals for you

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1 GBP = 1.157 EUR
1 EUR = 0.864 GBP
Amount received (after accounting for delivery fees)
A convenient prepaid way for spending abroad that's safer and easier to track.
Get cover to protect yourself from the cost of potential problems when travelling.
A prepaid card thats useful for travelling but can be used at home too
Last updated
May 23rd, 2024

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Today’s best exchange rates

See how much foreign currency you can buy per pound sterling from the top online providers today
CurrencyExchange rate
Euros1.16
US Dollars1.26
Australian Dollars1.90
Turkish Lira38.37
UAE Dirham4.57

How do you get the best holiday money exchange rate?

You need to compare as many offers as possible when searching for the best currency exchange rate.

Use our currency converter

Use our up-to-date currency converter to compare current rates and ensure you get the best deal available.

High exchange rates

The higher the ratio, the more spending money you'll get for your holiday. Compare currency rates to make sure you get the best deal.

Delivery charges

It's best to arrange your currency exchange online, but you need to keep an eye on the cost of having your holiday money delivered to your home.

Special offers

Look out for travel money deals – time things right and you could get a higher exchange rate or free delivery

Pros and cons

Pros

You're less likely to overspend with cash
Cash is usually accepted everywhere, whereas shops and eateries in rural areas may not accept cards, or could charge you extra to use them
If you want to leave a tip, you need to use cash
You don't need to worry about the exchange rate changing once you have your cash, which makes it easier to budget for the overall cost of your holiday

Cons

There's no way to replace cash if it is lost or stolen
You might miss out on an opportunity if you see something you'd like but don't have enough cash on you
You could find better rates by using a travel debit or credit card
You won't get the same protection on purchases that you get with a credit card

Five golden rules of travel money

1. Know how much cash you'll need

1. Know how much cash you'll need

Carrying around a large amount of cash isn't the safest thing to do. At the same time, not having enough cash can cause a lot headaches too. It's a good idea to take a little more than you think you'll need.

But it's also good sense to have a backup prepaid, debit or travel credit card that you can rely on - assuming you're going to a destination that widely accepts card transactions.

2. Shop around

2. Shop around

Not all currency exchange companies are created equal. Some may have good exchange rates, but higher fees. Others may have higher rates, but no fees. You have to make sure which one offers the best value to you.

This is why it’s worth comparing the deals on offer from several companies before ordering your travel money. Factor in the fees and the exchange rate and see where you end up better off. Often the amount of money you're exchanging can be a deciding factor.

3. Don't buy your travel money at the airport

3. Don't buy your travel money at the airport

Airport holiday money providers have notoriously high prices because they offer a last-chance solution for those who are just about to board a plane. By planning ahead you can save a small fortune.

4. Don't carry too many large notes

4. Don't carry too many large notes

Notes of large denominations can be tricky, as small shops and taxi cabs, which are more likely to require cash, might not have enough change to accept a large note.

Some retailers are also often wary of accepting large notes. Smaller notes and change can also be handy when it comes to tipping or buying small everyday items.

5. Don't use your credit card to buy travel money

5. Don't use your credit card to buy travel money

Avoid buying foreign currency with a credit card as credit card providers treat the transaction as a 'cash advance'. Not only will you be charged daily interest, you're also likely to be hit with a fee.

Five golden rules of travel money

1. Know how much cash you'll need

1. Know how much cash you'll need

Carrying around a large amount of cash isn't the safest thing to do. At the same time, not having enough cash can cause a lot headaches too. It's a good idea to take a little more than you think you'll need.

But it's also good sense to have a backup prepaid, debit or travel credit card that you can rely on - assuming you're going to a destination that widely accepts card transactions.

2. Shop around

2. Shop around

Not all currency exchange companies are created equal. Some may have good exchange rates, but higher fees. Others may have higher rates, but no fees. You have to make sure which one offers the best value to you.

This is why it’s worth comparing the deals on offer from several companies before ordering your travel money. Factor in the fees and the exchange rate and see where you end up better off. Often the amount of money you're exchanging can be a deciding factor.

3. Don't buy your travel money at the airport

3. Don't buy your travel money at the airport

Airport holiday money providers have notoriously high prices because they offer a last-chance solution for those who are just about to board a plane. By planning ahead you can save a small fortune.

4. Don't carry too many large notes

4. Don't carry too many large notes

Notes of large denominations can be tricky, as small shops and taxi cabs, which are more likely to require cash, might not have enough change to accept a large note.

Some retailers are also often wary of accepting large notes. Smaller notes and change can also be handy when it comes to tipping or buying small everyday items.

5. Don't use your credit card to buy travel money

5. Don't use your credit card to buy travel money

Avoid buying foreign currency with a credit card as credit card providers treat the transaction as a 'cash advance'. Not only will you be charged daily interest, you're also likely to be hit with a fee.

Budgeting for your holiday

How much travel money you need to take depends on your plans. You'll need to budget for your holiday to make sure you don't run out of money before the end.

Deciding how much money to take depends on were you're going, whether debit or credit card usage is prevalent, and if you want to have some local currency on hand for emergencies.

Having some cash is extremely important, as there's always a possibility your cards could get declined or blocked for some reason, and it may take some time to resolve the issue.

Also, some countries still rely predominantly on cash transactions, so you should factor that into how much cash you decide to take.

What are the top alternatives to buying travel money?

Travel credit cards

Travel credit cards

Travel credit cards - i.e. the ones with no foreign transaction fees - offer two key advantages over travel money:

  • Great exchange rates - when you spend on a travel credit card you get the Mastercard or Visa exchange rate, which is about the best you can find as a regular consumer

  • Purchase protection – for purchases costing between £100 and £30,000 you're covered by Section 75 of the consumer credit act, meaning if something goes wrong you can make a claim with your card provider should the vendor fail to pay up

However, not everywhere accepts travel credit cards and using them at a cash machine abroad can come with hefty fees. It can also be easier to overspend on a credit card, leaving you with debts on which interest is charged.

Travel money cards

Travel money cards

Currency cards and travel bank accounts let you spend overseas without being charged a foreign transaction fee. Their key strengths are:

  • Great exchange rates - you card provider will pass on the Mastercard or Visa rate to you without adding extra charges

  • No charges for ATM use overseas - if you need extra cash on holiday, you can withdraw it without being charged by your provider. Watch out for local ATM fees though, as these might still apply 

The downsides include that there can be limits on how much you can withdraw abroad using a travel money card, and that they're not accepted quite as widely as cash. Some travel current accounts also come with fees.

Prepaid travel cards

Prepaid travel cards

Prepaid travel cards can be loaded with currency and used abroad without paying foreign exchange fees. You can load a prepaid card with a specific foreign currency or a variety of different currencies, depending on your travel plans. The key advantages are:

  • Low or no fees to use abroad – prepaid travel card providers charge far less than traditional banks for overseas usage

  • Safer than carrying cash - you can cancel or freeze the card if it's lost or stolen, protecting your balance

However, you’ll need to watch out for general usage fees, which often apply when you load the card with cash and may also be charged monthly.

What are the top alternatives to buying travel money?

Travel credit cards

Travel credit cards

Travel credit cards - i.e. the ones with no foreign transaction fees - offer two key advantages over travel money:

  • Great exchange rates - when you spend on a travel credit card you get the Mastercard or Visa exchange rate, which is about the best you can find as a regular consumer

  • Purchase protection – for purchases costing between £100 and £30,000 you're covered by Section 75 of the consumer credit act, meaning if something goes wrong you can make a claim with your card provider should the vendor fail to pay up

However, not everywhere accepts travel credit cards and using them at a cash machine abroad can come with hefty fees. It can also be easier to overspend on a credit card, leaving you with debts on which interest is charged.

Travel money cards

Travel money cards

Currency cards and travel bank accounts let you spend overseas without being charged a foreign transaction fee. Their key strengths are:

  • Great exchange rates - you card provider will pass on the Mastercard or Visa rate to you without adding extra charges

  • No charges for ATM use overseas - if you need extra cash on holiday, you can withdraw it without being charged by your provider. Watch out for local ATM fees though, as these might still apply 

The downsides include that there can be limits on how much you can withdraw abroad using a travel money card, and that they're not accepted quite as widely as cash. Some travel current accounts also come with fees.

Prepaid travel cards

Prepaid travel cards

Prepaid travel cards can be loaded with currency and used abroad without paying foreign exchange fees. You can load a prepaid card with a specific foreign currency or a variety of different currencies, depending on your travel plans. The key advantages are:

  • Low or no fees to use abroad – prepaid travel card providers charge far less than traditional banks for overseas usage

  • Safer than carrying cash - you can cancel or freeze the card if it's lost or stolen, protecting your balance

However, you’ll need to watch out for general usage fees, which often apply when you load the card with cash and may also be charged monthly.

FAQs

Can you get commission-free travel currency?

Yes and no. It depends on how you define it. Commission refers to the service fee that a currency exchange broker charges for exchanging your money.

Many companies advertise 0% commission to exchange money online or on the high street, but, instead of charging commission, they offer a less competitive exchange rate. This is why you need to compare the whole deal rather than just opting for a zero-fee travel money deal.

Are there restrictions on getting currency delivered?

When you buy your currency online, it's normally sent via Royal Mail's Special Delivery service. This means you have to sign for the package. Cash orders that exceed £2,500 will be sent in batches because that's the maximum value that can be insured for each delivery.

Can you get next-day delivery for currency?

Some travel money providers do offer next-day delivery. These brokers send out currency using Royal Mail's Special Delivery Guaranteed by 1pm service.

Our comparison shows which operators offer this option and how much they charge for it. With some companies, you also have the option to pre-order your travel money for collection in person from a local branch, meaning you don't have to pay for delivery.

Will anyone buy my currency back?

If you've got leftover travel money from a trip abroad, you can use a buy-back service to convert it back into pounds.

The buy-back rate tells you how much sterling you'll get back.

Remember to factor in the rate and delivery costs, and compare exchange rates. You can check out the best euro-to-pound exchange rate by looking at our comparison table.

About our comparison

Who do we include in this comparison?

We include every company that gives you the option of buying euros online. Discover how our website works.

How do we make money from our comparison?

We have commercial agreements with some of the companies in this comparison. We get paid commission if we help you take out one of their products or services. Find out more here.

You do not pay any extra and the deal you get is not affected.

Learn more about travel money

Find out more about getting the best rates or see if there are other products that would suit you
Travel money: the basics you need to know
Travel money: the basics you need to know
Travel money: how to get the best deal
Travel money: how to get the best deal
Last minute holiday checklist
Last minute holiday checklist

About the author

Salman Haqqi
Salman Haqqi spent over a decade as a journalist reporting in several countries around the world. Now as a personal finance expert, he helps people make informed financial decisions.

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