What is a Prepaid Currency Card?
Frustrated by the overcomplicated and unnecessary charges being applied for using your debit or credit card abroad? We know how you feel. The travel money rip-off stops here!
Prepaid currency cards (for the purpose of understanding can be known as: currency cards, travel money cards or foreign exchange currency cards) essentially allow you to pre-load foreign currency prior to your departure and eliminate many charges associated with using your card abroad. They offer a fantastic alternative to the old fashioned method of purchasing traveller’s cheques and are a more cost-effective method of buying foreign currency. Loading foreign currency onto your prepaid currency card can often beat airport currency exchange rates by approximately 8%. You are also likely to get approximately 4% better exchange rates compared to bureau de changes and travellers cheques. From a cost and price angle, it is well worth taking advantage of a FREE prepaid currency card.
Prepaid currency cards effectively work exactly the same as your everyday credit or debit card, save for the fact that there is no overdraft facility and you can’t get into any debt on the card. This makes the prepaid card a really effective tool for budgeting whilst abroad. You will know exactly how much you have to spend abrod. Travel money no longer needs to feel like play money! When you are abroad, the card works exactly the same as normal where you can use it in shops, restaurants and to withdraw cash out of the wall (eliminating the traditional fees).
Why get a Prepaid currency card?
With your prepaid currency card, as you are paying for goods or withdrawing money in the same currency (i.e Euros if you have loaded Euros onto the card and abroad in the Eurozone) you can take advantage of zero conversion rates being applied. There is no need to dread the card statement on arrival back home with a whole raft of unnecessary fees and charges that you would likely expect by using your normal everyday card. .
All the prepaid currency card suppliers listed have a variety of reload options. Thus, if you are running low on funds and need to top up whilst away, you can reload your card online or over the phone. Clearly, online is the preferred option to alleviate expensive telephone bills!
Explain the benefits of a pre-paid currency card
- Card is issued FREE or charge
- No Monthly Fees
- Convenience and Security
- Great for budgeting how much money to spend on your trip
- No overdraft facility, inability to go into debt
- Superior exchange rates to the high street
- Much competitive exchange rates than bureaus (often by up to 4%!)
- Free* overseas ATM withdrawals
- Pin protection
- Re-issue in the event of your card being lost or stolen
- Accepted anywhere VISA or MASTERCARD is displayed
- Re-use the card on future trips
Why prepaid currencies are cards a better option to travellers cheques
We’ve all been there. Roaming around foreign cities uncomfortably with passport and travellers cheques in hand. This can be risky and with a prepaid currency card there is no need to have your passport with you every time you want to convert a batch of currency. Furthermore, with travellers cheques the exchange rate you obtain will be contingent on the time you convert currencies. Whilst if exchange rates go in your favour you win, it is not a good way to budget as you are not mitigated against exchange rate fluctuations. Prepaid currency cards are a far safer and more convenient bet, simply pre-loading currency onto the card prior to departure. It ensures you control how much you spend, withdraw whenever you want and are a safer option.
Who are prepaid currency cards suitable for?
Prepaid currency cards are a great option for frequent travellers, businesspeople, expats, overseas property owners, families and anyone with a need to travel overseas. They are accepted worldwide; anywhere a VISA or MASTERCARD sign is displayed.
What happens if I have money left on my prepaid currency card?
There are a few convenient options available to you when recovering leftover money on the card.
- Take advantage of the buy back option offered by providers (check admin costs)
- Use the card in any country until funds on the card reach zero (may be a fee if you use in a different currency)
- Cash out the card
- Keep the card until you visit the country the next time (most people keep hold of the card)
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