can use my travel credit cards eligibility calculator at mse.me/ travelcardeligibility to find which of these are most likely to accept you.
If I had to pick one, it’d be the halifax.co.uk Clarity which gives near-perfect rates everywhere and has low ATM costs. Plus, apply now and spend abroad on it by the end of September and you get £20 cashback. Fail to fully repay and it’ll cost you 18.9% APR.
Withdraw cash and you will pay interest even if you repay in full. It’s not too much, and it’s still better than most bureau de change – yet it does mean it’s far better to spend on the card than withdraw cash and spend that.
Alternatively, anyone (though it will ID check) can get a monzo. com prepaid card as it doesn’t credit-check you. Unusually, the card has no fees and gives you near-perfect rates when you spend on it. You have to operate it via an app though, and usually there’s a waiting list (though via mse.me/prepaidtravel you can get it with no wait) retailer. Top prepaid cards let you lock in today’s rate. Unlike credit cards which require you to pass a credit check, anyone over 18 can get a prepaid card. You usually load them with cash, locking in a rate on that day, then spend on them later. The top picks due to low fees and best exchange rates is revolut.com for euros, dollars, zlotys and Swiss francs, and weswap.com for a wider range of currencies.
WHAT you really want is cash (and it’s always useful to have a little bit) – never wait until you get to the airport, rates there are hideous. And ignore such marketing spiel as ‘commission free’ that just means they load the cost into the exchange rate. Instead just compare by simply asking how many dollars, euros or whatever you’ll get for your cash after all fees. For help visit my travelmoneymax.com site which compares over 30 bureaus to find the best rates.