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Currency Exchange

Where is the best place to exchange currency and what is the best method? I'm an American traveling to Scotland this summer.

Posted by
223 posts


Your best bet for exchanging money is to bring a reasonable amount of cash just to get you going, and then to pull money from an ATM.

This way, you get the bank-to-bank exchange rate, which is the best, and will only be charged whatever fee your bank charges. For example, I bank at the Boeing Employees Credit Union, and they charge me a 1% fee on all foreign exchanges, but no fee for using the non-Boeing ATM.

Ask your bank what the fees are for using your debit card overseas. If they charge a fee (i.e., $3.00) plus the percentage, you can minimize them by taking out larger sums each transaction and putting the extra money in your money belt.


Posted by
13 posts

Exchange your money in the city you are arriving in...but not at the airport. Go ahead and exchange 50 USD to Pounds before you leave and then exchange the rest in the city you first go to. It is a better exchange rate if you just use a debit card to make your purchases, but still have cash on hand.

Posted by
466 posts


Don't exchange money, it's too expensive. Use the ATM machines just as we do here. The bank will only charge 1%. You will waste too much money using exchange houses and even walking into a bank to change money. Everyone now uses the ATM machines they are everywhere and a breeze to use!!!!

Posted by
8700 posts

Short answer: Use credit cards for major purchases and get cash from ATMs for everything else. More complete answer: Read Rick Steves' article ( which includes information on what to do BEFORE leaving home to be sure your cards will work in Europe.