British holidaymakers accumulate £663m worth of leftover foreign currency

25 Aug, 2015

Stacks of foreign cash are gathering dust in Britain’s homes as holidaymakers estimate having an average of £55.25 in leftover foreign currency, accumulating to more than £663 million sitting at home.

New figures released today from Visa Europe reveal two in five Brits (39%) admit to keeping unused currency in the house. The research found that the average traveller estimates having £55.25 in foreign cash such as Dollars, Euros, Yen or Rupees at home. And one in six (16%) put their hands up to having at least £75 of leftover currency. This one-sixth of the population alone has accumulated a staggering £369 million in total.

Meanwhile, not spending all their holiday cash leads almost a third (30%) of British travellers getting caught up in ‘squanderlust’ – spending unused currency at the airport because they know they won’t be able to spend it at home.

A spokesman for, Visa Europe said:“For those anxious to use every last Dollar or Dirham, a frenzied episode of ‘squanderlust’ frequently means unnecessary airport spending. Using a Visa card abroad is the smarter way to spend – it’s more convenient, it’s safe and you won’t return home with foreign currency which will never see the day of light again. Paying by card means you only use the money you want to spend and the cost of making card payments at the point-of-sale in foreign countries are often comparable to using a high street bureau de change before the trip.”