If your main bank is Santander and you wish to buy travel money from them, or if you are looking to compare Santander travel money rates with other providers, we take a look at how their rates stack up against the competition.
We also looked at the fees for using your Santander debit and credit card abroad if you don’t wish to buy travel money.
This is a small sample of rates for popular currencies. All rates were taken online at the same time for £750 worth of currency.
The current rate Santander are offering for euros is 1.1206. The best deal on compareholidaymoney was being offered by Travel FX at 1.1589 followed by Currency Online Group at 1.1577 and Covent Garden FX at 1.1548.
The Santander Exchange rate would put them at the bottom of our listings which, it has to be said, are usually occupied by the high street banks.
Santander rate for USD is 1.1776. You can get 1.2287 with Covent Garden FX, 1.2260 with COG and 1.2252 with Travel FX. That means you get $50.00 less with Santander than Covent Garden FX if you buy £1000 currency.
Santander exchange rate for TRY is 17.3878. We have Travel FX offering 17.9328, Sterling 17.9153 and Travel Money Club offering 18.2432 (their delivery charge keeps them 3rd).
Santander offer 8.1638 for HRK. Our listings puts Travel FX in top spot with 8.6389 followed by Ace-FX delivery at 8.1670 and Currency Online Group at 8.6166.
Santander rate for AED is 4.2439. We are showing Currency Online Group at 4.4751, Travel FX at 4.4502 and Ace FX delivery at 4.4500.
It’s fair to say we didn’t check all 60 odd currencies but in every case we looked at, the Santander travel money rates would place them at the bottom of our listings for exchange rate comparisons. This is not uncommon among high street banks who possibly rely on their loyal customers to buy currency from them. If you want the best deals for your currency then allow yourself a few days and shop online for home delivery. If you want to pick up from a store in person then use our click and collect service and enter your postcode to find the best exchange rates near to your location.
There are fees and charges associated with using your credit card abroad. It should be noted this is true for all banks and not just Santander. In the case of Santander it would depend on what credit card you have. Here is an illustration of the current charges for the different types of card.
This means if you withdraw €100 euros with your everyday credit card it will cost you around £5.50 for that transaction, and the application of the exchange rate set by Mastercard. If you buy something for the same value with the same card it will cost you about £2.95 in fees plus the exchange rate.
Looking at the table of fees for using your debit card it can be mind boggling. There are no less than 8 different charges for using your debit card abroad including a slightly more favourable one for using a Santander ATM in Spain! Then there are sometimes fees and rates applied by Mastercard and Visa.
There is a standard fee of 2.95% for making a purchase and withdrawing cash abroad (That’s £2.95 for every hundred pounds). If you withdraw from a Santander ATM in Spain, that fee is waived.
The exchange rate you get when using your debit card is set by Visa or Mastercard depending on which one you have. This will vary slightly day by day and is a bit confusing because it gives a euro to GBP value rather than the other way round which most people would be familiar with.
Mastercard debit exchange rate is showing as €1 = 0.864638 and the Visa debit rate at €1 = 0.860683. This equates to 1.1565 and 1.1618 respectively which doesn’t seem too bad considering the rates available at the moment but, these are showing as being set in June 2021 so it’s hard to know if this is accurate or not. The Santander website explains:
“We will convert the foreign currency using the exchange rate set by Visa or Mastercard (subject to card type) on the date the transaction is charged to your account, together with any applicable foreign usage fees as set out in the table above.
The exchange rate used may differ from the rate that applied on the actual date of the transaction as exchange rates vary on a daily basis. The exchange rate used when the transaction is processed and the amount of the transaction in sterling after the application of the exchange rate will be detailed on your statement.”
If you are on holiday for a week and just using your credit or debit card you could end up paying a lot of money in fees and charges.
The best value for your holiday or trip abroad will come by buying the currency of your destination country in advance. Shopping online will find you the best deals. Avoid using cards abroad whether it’s debit, credit or prepaid currency cards which come with extra fees and charges.