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Multi-currency Cards

Compare Prepaid Multi-currency Cards

Multi-currency cards are a type of prepaid card designed to be used as payment for goods and services anywhere in the world. They offer the same level of chip-and-pin protection offered by UK credit and debit cards but with better exchange rates and much lower fees.

See our guide to prepaid multi-currency cards for more information.

To remain impartial these comparisons are ranked solely on the number of reviews each card issuer has received. You may want to compare several cards by clicking on them for full details before you decide which is best for you.

Prepaid Card
FX Fee
ATM Fee
Transaction Fee
Customer Reviews
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WeSwap Prepaid Card
FX Fee: 1.0%
£1.50
Free
Exclusive to Compare Holiday Money customers: load £50 on a new card and get £10 free! New peer-to-peer approach offering exceptional exchange rates and free ATM withdrawals over £200. Up to 18 different currencies on one card.
Post Office Travel Money Card
FX Fee: Free
£1.50
£1.50
The Post Office Travel Money Card is a popular choice for Europe. There are no transaction fees but ATM withdrawals will cost you £1.50 each time.
ICE PLC Travellers Cashcard
FX Fee: Free
Free
Free
The ICE Travellers Cashcard is a fairly competitive multi-currency that offers 1.5% cashback on qualifying purchases but beware of massive commission charges!
No1 Currency Prepaid Travel Card
FX Fee: 3%
£1.25
3%
Our time and money is limited, and therefore precious – no more so than when you’re travelling, so why waste either buying currency at the airport. The No.1 Currency Travel Money card can save you plenty of both, and can be organised online in three simple steps.
Travelex Money Card
FX Fee: 5.75%
Free
£1.50
Introducing the UK's first contactless prepaid currency card! The Travelex Money Card has all of the features you'd expect from an industry heavyweight and you can manage your account with the free Travelex App, but be wary of the 2% reload fee and 5.75% foreign exchange fee when spending overseas.
FairFX Anywhere Card
FX Fee: 1.40%
£1.00 + 1.4%
Free
The FairFX Anywhere Card has one of the lowest FX fees of all the cards we compare. Coupled with competitive exchange rates, this card is great for use anywhere in the world.
Caxton FX Global Traveller
FX Fee: 2.75%
Free
Free
The Caxton FX Global Traveller is a decent card from a well-known and highly competitive provider. There are no fees for purchases and ATM withdrawals overseas but don't use it in the UK.
First Premier Prepaid MasterCard
FX Fee: 2.0%
£1.00
Free
The First Premier Prepaid MasterCard is a fairly competitive card but a monthly charge and £1 ATM withdrawal fee means it's not quite good enough to shout about.
OPTIMUM PAYG Sterling Card
FX Fee: 1.0%
£1.50 + 2%
£1.50 + 2%
With so many fees and charges the OPTIMUM PAYG Sterling Card isn't a serious contender here and better cards can be found elsewhere. *Annual Fee applies for the first year only.
Splash Prepaid Maestro
FX Fee: 1.0%
£1.50 + 2%
2.50%
The Splash Prepaid Maestro is an expensive card to take abroad and has worse fees than many UK credit and debit cards. Look elsewhere for a better deal.
CardOneBanking Prepaid MasterCard
FX Fee: 2.75%
£3 + 2.75%
Free
This card from CardOneBanking is average in terms of fees and charges but a £12.50 monthly fee makes it one of the most expensive prepaid cards we compare and should be avoided.
Tuxedo Travel Sterling Card
FX Fee: Free
£1.50
Free
The Prepaid Travel Sterling Card from Tuxedo is fairly competitive and offers most of the features you would expect. The pricey application fee is offset by adding ten pounds to your balance when you load the card for the first time but don't use this card in the UK to avoid hefty fees.

Prepaid Multi-currency Cards

Prepaid Multi-currency Cards - also known as "Sterling Cards" or "Travel Cards" - are a special kind of payment method which are designed to be more cost-effective than a standard UK credit or debit card when used overseas. They are intended to be a modern replacement to Travellers Cheques as they are more secure, more widely accepted and can be used anywhere in the world that accepts VISA or MasterCard.

Like traditional bank cards they are made of high-quality, durable plastic and come complete with chip-and-pin protection as standard which means they are just as secure as a regular bank card. However, unlike traditional bank cards, prepaid cards are not linked to your bank account in any way which means you cannot go overdrawn with them; you simply top-up your card over the phone or internet (paying using your regular bank card) and top your balance up when it runs out. There are no hidden charges and no surprise bills when you return home from abroad!

Most prepaid multi-currency cards are free to purchase (a minimum initial top-up of around £50 is usually required) and are suitable for everyone from solo travellers and couples to families and large groups. Multiple cards can be linked to the same account which is perfect for families on a budget and any left-over currency at the end of your trip can be converted back into Pounds, usually at the rate you bought it at.

Prepaid multi-currency cards lie somewhere between cash and credit / debit cards when it comes to cost-effectiveness. Here are a couple of typical usage examples so you can see how the costs compare. We've used Australian Dollars in our example but the figures are representative of all world currencies:

Aussie Dollars received when spending £100 in a shop or restaurant in Australia*

Aussie Dollars received for £100 from an ATM in Australia*

* Based on data taken on 24/11/14. The cash equivalent was calculated using the AUD rate of 1.7955 offered by Travel FX. The cards we compared were: Moneycorp Explorer Card, Barclays Visa Debit and Barclays Visa Credit.

How do prepaid multi-currency cards work?

Why are prepaid multi-currency cards better than credit or debit cards?

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