Written on: 12/02/2012
I was travelling to Malaysia and was advised to take this card as an alternative to Travellers Cheques. I was advised it was best to purchase the card in sterling, there would be a 2% charge to load it and a £1.50 charge to withdraw cash at an ATM. Apart from this I was assured there weren't any further charges.
After using it a few times I checked my online account to see what exchange rate I was getting, and it showed the rate to be 4.76. However when I divided the amount spent in local currency by the sterling amount the actual rate given was 4.68
On my return I queried the rate with the Travel Agent who then advised me there was an additional 5.75% loading on the exchange rate when it was used in a currency other than the one the card was purchased in. As I was given a leafet at time of purchase where this was stated I was told if I hadn't realised it was my own fault. However,even taking this into account I was still unable to equate back to the rate they had given me.
I then raised this direct with Travelex who advised it is because they round the figures to 2 decimal places, but it does not state this anywhere on the internet or on their literature. In their favour they did refund the commison I had paid to purchase the card as a gesture of good will, but did not address any of my concerns about displaying false exchange rates. Indeed, the only reference they made to this was to apologise that I was confused!!
After more emails and letters I have now been advised my comments have been noted and reviewed with regards to how exchange rates are displayed on the web site. It does not state they will start to tell the truth with regards to the rates they publish.
The rates Travelex provide are poor at the best of times, but when compared to the rate of 4.95 I got when paying for meals on my credit card, with no charges, it's no wonder they try to hide how bad the rates are.