Travel cards and the exchange rate

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by Charlie, Oct 5, 2015.

  1. Charlie

    Charlie Funster

    Joined:
    May 16, 2015
    Messages:
    2,232
    Likes Received:
    2,581
    Location:
    Herefordshire / Worcestershire borders .
    Having never been a card user in so much as I have not had a credit card for ten years I/we recently got a Post office travel money card.

    But I have a couple of questions regarding these cards.

    Firstly if I top up at today's rate and buy say 500 euro the 500 euro stays just that irrespective of any exchange rates ? May be a daft question but best to ask.

    I've had a wee nose round the net and its predicted the pound will weaken so I'm thinking its prudent to buy a heap of euro as we will use them up no doubt.

    How many study form RE the exchange rate and buy when it at a good rate ?

    What are peoples opinions on how rates will go ?

    Lastly we got our card in haste as we dint even know about them till we got great advice here ! We were going to take a heap of cash euro with us on or first trip a couple of monts ago or rely on a debit card at cash points.. Neither are or were a good idea ! So which card should we look to acquire or should we just stay with the Post Office one we have just now.

    Thanks,
     
  2. PhilandMena

    PhilandMena Funster

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Messages:
    2,621
    Likes Received:
    3,624
    Location:
    Corby, Northants
    Have a look at Caxton. A lot of Funsters use this card.
     
  3. NickNic

    NickNic Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2014
    Messages:
    5,435
    Likes Received:
    11,115
    Location:
    Kettering
    Yes. You are buying Euros at the rate on that day and they are held on the card until you spend them.
     
  4. MikeandCarolyn

    MikeandCarolyn Read Only Funster

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2008
    Messages:
    2,171
    Likes Received:
    1,463
    Location:
    Worle,North Somerset
    Why not ?
    For 30 yrs we've been taking cash and our debit cards-never had a problem.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  5. Robert Clark

    Robert Clark Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2014
    Messages:
    5,593
    Likes Received:
    9,748
    Location:
    East Sussex
    Cards like the Post Office one are pre paid cards, in that you load them up with Euros and spend them as you go along.
    The exchange rate is set at the prevailing rate at the point at which you transfer your funds into the account.
    We opted for the Easyjet card originally as Caxton were not accepting new applications. However we are likely to get a Sainsbury bank one as it allows two cards on the one account.
     
  6. NickNic

    NickNic Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2014
    Messages:
    5,435
    Likes Received:
    11,115
    Location:
    Kettering
    The potential problem with a big stack of cash is obvious.

    If you want to use your debit card you need to know two things from your bank:

    1. What exchange rate are you getting?
    2. How much are the transaction fees?

    Once you have those answers you can make your own decision about whether or not you want to use it. There are loads of threads about alternatives so just have a search.

    For what it's worth I have Caxton and UKash currency cards for ATM withdrawals and a Halifax Clarity credit card for purchases, tolls and fuel.
     
  7. Chris

    Chris Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    May 5, 2010
    Messages:
    16,435
    Likes Received:
    34,472
    Location:
    kent
    I always keep £2000 cash in the van.

    In case we are gassed.
     
    • Like Like x 15
  8. Stewart J

    Stewart J Funster

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2010
    Messages:
    1,445
    Likes Received:
    1,250
    Location:
    SW Northumberland
    Presently into our 6 th week in France, on recomendations of fellow funsters we got a Caxton card 2 years ago it's brilliant for everything except automated Toll booths on Paeges or fully auto non manned garages then you need a credit card. Again on the advice of funsters we took out a Halifax Clarity Card one of the best about and as recommended by Martin Lewis the money guy. We also carry euros stashed in several hidey holes around the van. Absolute peace of mind and we are covered for all contingencies. Caxton can be topped up online in seconds.
     
  9. lou020

    lou020 Funster

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2010
    Messages:
    412
    Likes Received:
    257
    Location:
    huddersfield
    I also use the caxton, never had a problem with it. Also we use the halifax clarity credit card or santander zero credit card for abroad only.
    I never use my santander debit card as it charges twice.
    I thought the post office travel card charges when you use it.
     
  10. Charlie

    Charlie Funster

    Joined:
    May 16, 2015
    Messages:
    2,232
    Likes Received:
    2,581
    Location:
    Herefordshire / Worcestershire borders .
    I tried my debit card at a supermarket just to establish it worked fine. We were only picking up a few groceries.. TSB charged just over £5 for the privilege. Only bought fifteen quids worth of stuff !!!! Bobbing rastards....
     
    • Like Like x 1
  11. tonka

    tonka Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2008
    Messages:
    5,327
    Likes Received:
    7,583
    Location:
    Cannock, Staffs or Benidorm, spain
    Another vote for Caxton. Only had it for a year and working fine for us.
    One thing to note.. Some / most of these cards are not covered by the bank / government guarantee. So if you load up to much and they go bump you could loose it all.!!
     
  12. Charlie

    Charlie Funster

    Joined:
    May 16, 2015
    Messages:
    2,232
    Likes Received:
    2,581
    Location:
    Herefordshire / Worcestershire borders .
    PO travel card makes no charges for using the card. Each transaction we did only the sum spent was deducted.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  13. Charlie

    Charlie Funster

    Joined:
    May 16, 2015
    Messages:
    2,232
    Likes Received:
    2,581
    Location:
    Herefordshire / Worcestershire borders .
    If the Post a Office goes bump we really are in trouble ...
     
  14. Stewart J

    Stewart J Funster

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2010
    Messages:
    1,445
    Likes Received:
    1,250
    Location:
    SW Northumberland
    For info you do not have to be a Halifax customer to apply for a Clarity card and there are no charges when you don't use it nor is their a charge to apply for one. It is a credit card.

    Similarly the Caxton card is free to apply in that you are required to pay a small admin fee to set it up this is refunded onto your Card in euros the first time you top it up. A big advantage of this card is being able to top it up when rate is favourable.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  15. Charlie

    Charlie Funster

    Joined:
    May 16, 2015
    Messages:
    2,232
    Likes Received:
    2,581
    Location:
    Herefordshire / Worcestershire borders .
    Your not serious... You can't be cos you never mentioned your Rolex ....:D
     
    • Like Like x 2
  16. GWAYGWAY

    GWAYGWAY Funster

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2014
    Messages:
    1,893
    Likes Received:
    1,384
    Location:
    Dover
    Where are you parked? hissssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss!
     
    • Like Like x 2
  17. Charlie

    Charlie Funster

    Joined:
    May 16, 2015
    Messages:
    2,232
    Likes Received:
    2,581
    Location:
    Herefordshire / Worcestershire borders .
    Thanks... But I don't want a credit card.. The pre load card suits us just fine.

    Is is/has the MasterCard symbol on it and worked fine on the Toll roads we used..

    Part of my question is how people judge the predictability of the exchange rate ? Where do we look for reliable ... Well as reliable as it can be predictions on which way the rates are likely to go ?

    It seems from what I have read is the pound will weaken so I'm thinking about bunging a lump onto the card.. I mean it earns bugger all in the TSB after all.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  18. Stewart J

    Stewart J Funster

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2010
    Messages:
    1,445
    Likes Received:
    1,250
    Location:
    SW Northumberland
    The way rates are going down I would go for it we just have this evening.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  19. John Laidler

    John Laidler Funster

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Messages:
    8,569
    Likes Received:
    11,547
    Location:
    Plympton, Devon
    I used to have a post office card but the exchange rate was poor. I then got a Caxton card but I've never used it as I then got a Brittany Ferries cash card and I used that in France recently. Unfortunately, it isn't recognised as a French account which I had hoped it might and at one aire we used we didn't have a card which worked, but this only happened once.

    I also use a Barclay's visa debit card to take money directly out of my account. This does not attract any fees but it is important to remember if the ATM asks you at the end of the transaction if you want to be charged in pounds or Euros you must choose Euros. If you choose pounds the owner of the ATM will use their own exchange rate. Choose Euros and you will get the visa/MasterCard rate which will be better.
     
  20. Viennese

    Viennese Funster

    Joined:
    May 21, 2008
    Messages:
    2,346
    Likes Received:
    2,521
    Location:
    Oxford
    What was your registration again??
     
    • Like Like x 1
Loading...

Share This Page