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Travellers Cheques

... should I use travellers cheques when travelling ...

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Many would say that because travellers can now use their ATM cards and/or credit cards when travelling that the need for Travellers Cheques is being put to the test.

Travellers Cheques are still very much in use however, and the reason for this may well be because they can offer one feature which the other means of getting money when abroad don't. That is security. While we ourselves have never had a problem using our ATM cards or credit cards, there are scams out there which travellers must be aware of - read our Tips on Using your ATM and Credit Cards Safely.

 Travellers Cheques eliminate this threat, and major traveller cheques issuers will normally offer you a refund for any lost or stolen cheques. This additional security comes with the price of a worse exchange rate than may be available through the ATM network, and handling fees.

Most of the major companies such as American Express, Visa etc offer Foreign Currency travellers cheques which saves you the hassle of having to exchange them in the country you are travelling to. If they don't offer the currency you need, then you will need to exchange the cheques in the country you are travelling to which may well incur more charges such as handling fees, and an exchange rate.

While travellers cheques do offer some extra piece of mind we would recommend sticking with your ATM and credit cards for obtaining cash when overseas, just use them with vigilance and care. See the section about Foreign Currency for more tips and advice about your cash when travelling.

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