Customers lose up to 13% exchanging unused holiday cash

16 Oct 2018 Holidaymakers are losing up to 13% exchanging unused foreign currency after trips abroad due to the rates on offer from foreign exchange providers, financial data analytics experts Consumer Intelligence warn.

One of the biggest gaps between buying and selling rates is offered by the Post Office – customers buying £100.99 of US dollars at the Post Office receive $130 but would only receive £87.25 for selling the $130.

There are better rates on offer than the 13% loss on buying and then selling but Consumer Intelligence advises holidaymakers to consider buyback guarantees.

There is potentially huge demand – its research shows one in three holidaymakers intend to exchange left over foreign currency after overseas trips and 38% take more than £500 of cash abroad.

Providers offering buyback guarantees on unused currency include Asda, Travelex and Moneycorp who charge £3.99 for the service while Caxton charges £4.99 for the buyback on its prepaid cards. 

Eurochange uses a sliding scale offering to buy back 20% of the original amount for £2 after 20 days; 30% for £3 after 30 days; or 30% for £5 after 50 days. The Post Office does not offer a buy back guarantee. 

Andy Buller, from Consumer Intelligence said: “Buyback guarantees can be good value for customers planning to sell back currency particularly when compared with the buy and sell rates offered by travel money providers.

“Holidaymakers are often coming back with large amounts of unused cash and there is a real opportunity for currency providers to win more business by offering good rates on buyback schemes.

“There is certainly a lot of leftover foreign currency around in the UK and it’s all money that could be better used for something else.”

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