Exchange Rates


Junior member
hi all,
I am off to Spain in 2 days and someone mentioned to me today that I get a better exchange rate if I change my £'s in to Euros when I get there rather than in UK.. Is this true or where can I find the Spanish Exchange rate.. I always thought the rate was fixed around the world.. I also read somewhere a while ago that i should draw cash from the ATM's abroad, buy doing this I would take advantage of a better rate too... is there :confused: any truth to these 2 questions or am I talking gonads?

thx Citroen999


I saw something on this recently and the advice was to get any money needed from an ATM whilst abroad. The reasons are that the costs overall were cheaper even accounting for the additional costs of drawing money and that you will not be converting more money into a foreign currency than is really needed. I dont know if this is try or not but the advice seemed to make sense. Also exchange rates are not fixed and vary massively between different banks and other foreign exchange facilities.



I think the best places to exchange currency (in the UK at least) are Marks and Spencers (!) and then the Post Office. Both are commission free.

Re: withdrawing money from cashpoints. Does the advice mean taking money out with your Switch card (is this is possible abroad) or your Credit Card? Credit cards are very expensive when you take cash out in this country so abroad they may be even more so.


Senior member
I easily withdrew cash from ATMs in Gran Canaria recently using my switch card and pin no - couldn't have been easier, in fact, and I shall do the same from now on when I return. The rate was certainly as good (if not better) than I'd have gotten in the UK, and it meant I only had to carry round as much money as I needed, rather than hoiking an obscene amount of cash (I wish!) overseas with me.


Senior member
The POff is a crap rate. I bought some euros at Marks the other day and the little git behind the counter tried to tuck me up for 5euros. Cheeky sod :-0
Gotta get up earlier than that :LOL:

Have a good hol ;)
There always used to be a way of drawing cash from your credit card without the usual charges, and I do hope someone corrects me if the rules have now been changed.

This is how you do it: just pay lots of cash into your account in the UK, so that your balance is positive. Then when you withdraw the cash overseas, you are not 'borrowing' from the credit card company, you are only withdrawing the excess funds in the account, and therefore the usual cash withdrawal charges don't apply.

I used this method before ATMs were around, and it worked well for me.



I think you are right but, if I remember correctly, you still get charged a small amount for withdrawing cash.



Received an interesting email from over the weekend, which talks about one of possiblty the cheapest ways of getting to your money abroad. It might save you a bob or two..

If you frequently travel abroad, the cheapest way to get at your money is to open a current account with Nationwide and use the Visa debit card to get at your money. Unlike all the other banks' cards, Nationwide does not add on a foreign exchange fee to the wholesale rate it gets from Visa when you withdraw money abroad. This usually amounts to 2.75%.

And it's the only current account which doesn't have a cash withdrawal fee when you use the debit card at a foreign ATM. This fee is typically 1.5% but can be as high as 2.75% - and there's often a minimum charge of £1.50.

Other features that make this current account stand out from the crowd is one of the lowest authorised overdraft rates around at 6.75% and a generous 3% paid on balances when you're in credit. If you're worried about changing banks, you can stay with your existing bank and still open a Nationwide FlexAccount as you don't have to pay your salary in to it every month.

For more info go to:
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