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Cashing Travelers Checks in Britain

Yes, I know using ATMS to get cash is cheaper/convenient, but we think we got a good rate with no fees cashing them at UK post offices. We usually take travelers checks as back up. Can someone verify that we did get good rates after all?

Posted by
9363 posts

Say goodbye to "no fees" if you try to cash travelers checks anywhere, anymore. You'll be lucky if you get face value for them in some places. I have no idea how long ago you traveled, but TC are virtually impossible to cash anywhere now, and when you can cash them the fees and exchange rate are terrible.

Posted by
21243 posts

The ONLY way to know if you got a good exchange or not is to KNOW the exchange rate. How can anyone verify if you got a good rate or not without know what rate you got and what day. Give us a break. We are not mind readers. Companies who issue TCs have to make money somewhere. Mostly likely you paid a higher exchange rate when you bought and a higher rate when you cash. Before you do any currency transaction you have to know the current rate or otherwise you just a sucker waiting to be fleeced.

Posted by
4 posts

Sorry--I didn't make myself clear. Yes, we got a decent exchange rate cashing travelers checks with no extra fees using a postoffice in Yorkshire (UK) as compared to using the ATM the same day (ATMs still better but TC rate was competitive for people who use them as backup). I didn't pay for TC's since we get them free so that wasn't an issue. I just wondered if post offices in other counties also a good place to cash traveler's checks.

Posted by
21243 posts

I don't think post offices in other countries provide the same services as in Great Britain. Post offices are always going to be harder to find because there are fewer of them. Personally don't view that as a very dependable back up method. If I need to use my emergency cash, not sure I want the problem of finding somewhere to cash the TCs. Rates may be "competitive" at 3 to 5 percent but it is still extra 3 to 5 percent.

Posted by
1986 posts

A few years ago we had American Express travellers checks. A bank in London recommended that we cash them at an AmEx office to avoid the banks fees. Amex gave us going rate with no fees. Check with AmEx. Not sure if this still works

Posted by
26049 posts

Karen I don't see any reason why post offices across Britain who charge different rates on the same day.

Posted by
26049 posts

I've just looked at the AMEX website which says, "* While you can get dollar for dollar exchanges with no charges in the US, merchants in other countries may not change your Cheques for cash in the same currency without charging a fee. ** Please remember to ask the merchant if they do accept Travellers Cheques as American Express cannot guarantee that all merchants in the USA accept Travellers Cheques as a form of payment.
Commission fees and charges may apply and vary by country or exchange partner. For information on where to use your Travellers Cheques, visit americanexpress.com/useTC." ...... you pays your money and takes your choice ......

Posted by
4524 posts

^^^ Please re-read this thread and all of the posts. Travelers Checks are barely accepted nowadays so no, they are NOT a good option.

Back on the OP's topic, I would think TCs would be an awful backup. Very hard to cash, hard to find a place to accept them - no matter what the rate. If you need an emergency backup, saving costs shouldn't be the object. The point of an emergency backup is to get money access fast and convenient. Getting a cash advance on a credit card or carrying your own local currency that can be exchanged makes a lot more sense.

Posted by
8295 posts

This is a 3 year old thread. If travelers checks were a bad idea then, you know it is still a bad idea.