Travel money advice comes in all forms and from lots of sources not just the best deals from Compare Holiday Money but from online forums, blogs, financial websites, supermarkets……. yes, even your local supermarket will not only sell you currency alongside your peas and carrots, but they will help you to get the most out of it as well.
It’s not clear when the first bureau de change or kiosk if you prefer, opened in a UK supermarket but we asked Sainsbury’s for some facts and figures. Head of Travel Money Rachel Wood, told us their first bureau opened in wigan in 2007 and is still going strong today. Since that time another 255 have opened in their stores the most recent in Hull, Liverpool, Ripley and Kirkcaldy. You can find any of the Sainsbury stores that sell currency by going to our click and collect section and typing in your postcode or visiting the Sainsbury’s Travel Money website.
One question we get asked all the time at CHM and one we were happy to pass on is why do in-store rates differ from online rates? Rachel explained “We are committed to offering competitive rates across all channels. We offer competitive rates for our online customers and those buying in store. We also recognise that if you order online or by telephone you need to wait for the money to be delivered or collected in store, therefore the rates may differ”
We asked if they planned to open kiosks in all their stores and Rachel explained they open them based on customer demand. So if your local Sainsbury’s doesn’t sell your USD or TRY or Euros when you need them, let them know!
We have often mused and written about the relationship between our favourite supermarket and our holiday money so we asked Rachel how important the availability of travel money was to Sainsbury’s customers. This is what she told us “Availability and convenience continue to be top factors for Sainsbury’s customers when they buy travel money. With over 250 bureaux, many with free parking and extended opening hours over the summer we aim to be the most convenient choice for shoppers”.
Alongside selling you currency, you will find lots of advice from the supermarkets on the subject. Sainsbury’s themselves produced a short informative video on how to get the most from your travel money. In summary they tell us to:
Know the Jargon
Yes, sensible idea. You may think you know the difference between buy-rate, exchange-rate, sell-rate, interbank rate, pre-paid card, currency card……….. but do you?
Don’t buy currency at the airport
This should be a motto of Compare Holiday Money we have said this so many times. Now Sainsbury’s are telling you as a well so, don’t buy currency at the airport!
Take advantage of promotions
This is great advice. Lots of suppliers will have rate sales from time to time so look in our monthly newsletter where we always highlight the latest ones. Sainsburys always have a promotion which will give Nectar Card holders a slightly better rate and Nectar points as well so this is a great deal particularly if you are buying a lot of currency.
Always pay in the local currency
Yes the exchange rate you get by paying with GBP abroad will not always be obvious and will more than likely be terrible. If you have ever taken a trip on a cross channel ferry for example, you can pay in euros or pounds sterling. However, have you ever thought to look at the exchange rate? I have, and I can tell you it’s terrible! Much better to get your holiday cash before you go.
Keep foreign cash for the next trip
Yes that’s a great idea if you know you are going to visit the country again. However, nobody can predict the movement of currency over any given period so it might be a gamble. You can sell your currency back when you return if you have some leftover but you won’t get the same rate as you brought it for. The best buyback deals are on our dedicated buyback page.
Take a look at the informative little video and thanks to Rachel Wood at Sainsburys for the facts and figures.