Who offers the best currency exchange rate?

18 December 2008

Getting the most for your money is always important, but when the pound is weak against other currencies it's doubly important to make sure you get the best currency exchange rate possible.

Doubts over the economic recovery, the looming election and the threat of credit rating agencies downgrading the UK’s prized AAA credit rating, all mean the pressure is piling on sterling.

Most recently, official figures showing a widening trade deficit – with exports falling significantly and imports declining slightly – caused sterling to further weaken.

For holidaymakers travelling to the eurozone or America this Easter, the news is mixed. While sterling is stronger against both these currencies compared to last March, the improvement is weak.

This means getting the best deal on your holiday money is more important than ever.

It rarely pays to change your money at the airport, as exchange rates may not be as competitive as elsehwere and you probably will be hit with big commisison costs. For the same reasons, buying at your bank can also be a costly mistake.

Read more on how to make the most of your holiday money

Instead, spend a bit of time comparing exchange rates on the high street and browsing the internet are the best ways to boost your holiday spending money.


Provider Euro US Dollar
M&S £1 = €1.05 £1 = $1.45
Post Office £1 = €1.07 £1 = $1.47
International Currency Exchange £1 = €1.08 £1 = $1.49
Travelex £1 = €1.07 £1 = $1.47
Thomas Cook £1 = €1.06 £1 = $1.46
No 1 Currency £1 = €1.071 £1 = $1.47
HIFX £1 = €1.066 £1 = $1.47
Online FX £1 = €1.68 £1 = $1.45
Source: Providers' websites
Correct: 15/03/2010

When changing your money, don’t be swayed by the promise of commission-free exchanges as this doesn’t automatically mean you’ll get more money for your pounds.

Bureaux de change that waive commission may claw back some margin with poor exchange rates. In order to be sure you are getting the best deal, you need to compare the total cost in sterling of any foreign currency purchase – if in doubt, ask how many units of currency you’ll receive for your bulk sterling payment.


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