Travellers cheques

Travellers cheques explained

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The trusty travellers cheque has long been a favourite for holidaymakers when organising their travel money. However, there are fees to be wary of.

Older couple on holiday browsing at a fruit market

Don’t get caught in cheque mate

Traveller’s cheques, while secure and offering peace of mind are not always the cheapest way of carrying your money overseas. This is because there are a number of charges to take into account.

Commission charges are frequent with traveller’s cheques and are often as high as 2-3%. Handling fees are also regularly charged and you could even face another charge when you cash your cheque in. Shopping around to get the best deal is crucial.

With traveller’s cheques, as with foreign currency exchange, those who think ahead, get ahead. Keep an eye on the exchange rate and look to transfer funds well ahead of time. Some providers may offer free commission, especially for students.

Are traveller’s cheques outdated?

Some would argue that debit, credit and prepaid cards, which we will examine later in the guide, have surpassed the traveller’s cheque. In remote destinations traveller’s cheques are of no value at all as they can be difficult to cash in. However, they still have their uses elsewhere.

For example in America, dollar cheques are widely accepted as payment and if you need to take a lot of money away with you it is often an advisable move to mix and match cash and cheques. This prevents you from taking huge sums of money that you are not insured for abroad, offering security and peace of mind.

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