The Basics Of Exchanging Currency

by | Jan 31, 2013 | Finance & Insurance

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In 2009, finding by the World Bank determined that 215 million people worldwide live outside of their countries of birth. That’s equal to about three percent of the world’s population. Many people who live abroad do so for work or schooling, and so it is quite common for them to send or receive cash remittances.

These remittances can be complicated by currency exchange rates between countries. Each country’s treasury manages its exchange rate through various means, but currency exchange rates can fluctuate from day to day. If you plan to regularly send money between countries, then having access to good currency exchange deals can be vitally important to getting the most for your money. Here are some tips to help you find the best currency exchange deals, no matter what country you live in or where you want to send money.

Explore your options

In most large cities, there are a number of places that will exchange currency for you. Almost all banks will, as well as some larger retail stores. Additionally, kiosks inside airports, train stations, and other transportation hubs can perform exchanges on select currencies. All of these places will have slightly different exchange rates depending on the service fees that they charge for each transaction. Ask around and find out which establishments give you the highest exchange rates.
Another thing you can try, if you send or receive currency often, is a money transfer service. These services are generally available online and allow you to transfer money between accounts, converting currency along the way. These are often some of the best ways to get good currency exchange deals because they are highly specialized and have low operating costs.

These services may provide some of the best deals for currency exchange, but there are some things to take into account before you use one. First, find out how long transfers take to go through. Secondly, find out if the service requires you to pay a flat fee for maintaining and account with them.

Do additional research

If the money you are planning on exchanging does not need to be converted immediately, then it may be worth holding out for a better exchange rate. Exchange rates are usually better in the middle of week or around major holidays.
Remember, exchange rates generally do not fluctuate by more than a few percentage points either way. If you are only planning to exchange a few units of currency then it may not make much of a difference, but if you are planning on exchange a lot of money then it may be worth the effort of shopping around.

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