Change Money Before The Trip

Last but not least, an unusual point that should not be missed by individual travellers in particular. The biggest item in your travel expense reports is usually the hotel costs for your holiday. Last but not least, please note that many hotel portals now offer the option of only reserving rooms. In other words, you have to pay on the spot when you check out at the reception desk. You can usually pay in cash or by credit card.

And now comes the trick: you can often book the rooms in the local currency. If you want to fly to the USA, for example, you can reserve your rooms for a fixed price in US dollars – or in euros. What is the advantage? If the US dollar loses value in the foreseeable future, this means that your rooms will become cheaper every day.

A fictitious example:

1 room in New York, USA, costs 100 Euro per day. If you want to stay 10 days, this results in a sum of 1,000 euros. The EUR/USD exchange rate at the time of booking is 1.2000. In US dollars, the room would cost 1,200 US dollars. If the US dollar loses value in the coming weeks, the room will still cost 1,200 US dollars for an invoice in the local currency. The price is fixed. We now assume an exchange rate of EUR/USD of 1.4000 for the example. In sum this means: Your room costs only about 857 Euro when checked out. So you save 143 Euro. However, if the exchange rate falls to 1,000, the room booked in local currency would suddenly cost you 1,200 euros. In this case, booking at a fixed euro rate would have been cheaper. In other words: Take a look at the exchange rate right at the planning stage and decide when and how you want to book!

(However, always compare direct bookings with package deals – these can be much cheaper than anything you can save on direct bookings due to exchange rate fluctuations).

In conclusion, we hope we were able to show you that you can save money by optimizing your travel budget. Modern means of payment can save you exchange fees, intermediary fees and high surcharges on the official exchange rates. Inform yourself early and arm yourself against unwanted surprises & costs during your holiday!

There are moments in life when you think, “Oh man, that was a fucking crazy decision.” It was exactly the same for me in 2011, when I flew to the USA without changing money first. A decision I had already regretted at the airport upon arrival. Since then, I’ve been playing it safe: changing money before the trip is a must. Read more at for more updates about currency exchange during trip.

A few days ago I became aware of Dario’s blog parade, where he calls on me to write about a bad situation with a good outcome. At first I couldn’t really start with the topic, because I was sure that I had been lucky in my life and didn’t regret any of my decisions. Of course I was already faced with numerous challenges, not everything was always rosy in my life and it certainly didn’t work out as I had imagined, but nothing really tragic.

The more I thought about the topic, the more a certain memory stood out. A decision I made in 2011, namely not to change a single euro into dollars before my trip to the USA.

Change money before the trip – yes or no?

Since I already had a credit card at that time, which is very advantageous when travelling to the USA, or also generally outside the EU, since one cannot simply withdraw money everywhere with a normal EC card, as far as I know, I thought of the following:

“I simply save the exchange fees and withdraw a certain amount directly at the airport after the arrival in $ at an ATM (ATM).

The plan didn’t sound so bad. With the VISA card in my luggage and “a” PIN in my head, I flew from Hanover to Philadelphia at the end of August 2011, from where I had to take a bus to Baltimore to get to a girlfriend. I had booked the bus ticket in advance, the train ticket from the airport to the bus station in the city center not yet. Arriving at the airport I marched straight to the next ATM and wanted to withdraw money…

Author: John Wright

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