Tesco Bank Travel Money – How Does It Work?

Tesco Travel Money Cover Photo

Planning your dream vacation? Alongside your flight bookings and luggage preparations, it’s essential to ensure your travel money arrangements are in order.

If you prefer having cash in hand while abroad, one convenient option for acquiring foreign currency is through Tesco Bank Travel Money. But what exactly is it, and how does it work? Let’s delve into the details, covering the process of ordering, collection and delivery options, fees, exchange rates, and more.

Additionally, we’ll explore an alternative that not only streamlines your travel expenses but also potentially saves you money – the Wise card. It’s an international debit card designed for spending and cash withdrawals in over 150 countries, boasting favourable exchange rates and eliminating the need to carry cash around, leaving extra room in your luggage.

But first, let’s focus on understanding Tesco Bank Travel Money.

What is Tesco Bank Travel Money and How Does it Operate?

Tesco Travel Money Services

Tesco Travel Money is a service that allows you to purchase foreign currency, either online or at a physical Tesco store. This flexibility enables you to either pre-order your currency or buy it on the spot at your local Tesco supermarket, provided they have a travel money bureau in-store.

Tesco Bank boasts a wide range of readily available foreign currencies for purchase, including popular options like EUR and USD. However, if the currency you require isn’t in stock, they can place an order for you.

Here are the key features offered by this service:

  1. Price Match: If you come across a better exchange rate advertised within three miles of your local Tesco Travel Money Bureau on the same day, Tesco Bank will match it. This applies exclusively to in-store, like-for-like transactions and not to rates advertised online.
  2. Clubcard Prices: Tesco Clubcard holders can benefit from improved exchange rates by providing a valid Clubcard number. This perk is available only for online currency purchases.
  3. Buy Back Service: If you have any unused foreign currency remaining after your trip, you can exchange it back to Tesco Bank for pounds.
  4. 10% Discount on Tesco Bank Travel Insurance: When you purchase Tesco Travel Money, you can enjoy a 10% discount on Tesco Bank travel insurance.

It’s worth noting that Tesco Travel Money received the ‘Best Travel Money Provider’ award in the Personal Finance Awards 2022/23, a recognition bestowed by the public. This foreign currency exchange service is powered by Travelex.

Fees and Exchange Rates

Now, let’s explore the cost associated with using Tesco Bank Travel Money. The good news is that there’s no commission fee when ordering currency in a Tesco store or opting for Click and Collect services.

However, for certain orders requiring home delivery, there are delivery fees to consider. Here are the main charges you should be aware of:

  • Online foreign currency orders between £75 and £149.99: £4.99 delivery fee.
  • Online foreign currency orders between £150 and £499.99: £3.95 delivery fee.
  • Online foreign currency orders over £500: Free.
  • Late cancellation of Click & Collect order (less than 24 hours before the collection date): £10 late cancellation fee.

It’s essential to keep in mind that additional charges might apply if you use a credit card to pay for your Tesco Travel Money order. While Tesco Bank won’t charge you, your credit card provider is likely to impose fees for cash-related transactions, which often include foreign currency purchases.

Tesco Travel Money Exchange Rates

Tesco Bank Travel Money, like many other foreign currency providers, incorporates its margin into the mid-market exchange rate. Also known as the interbank rate, this is the rate used by banks for inter-currency transactions, considered one of the fairest exchange rates. However, it’s rarely available through most providers, except for a few like Wise.

By adding its margin to the rate, Tesco Bank generates revenue from the transaction. Unfortunately, this means you’ll receive slightly less foreign currency in exchange for your pounds. Nevertheless, Tesco Bank offers slightly improved rates for Tesco Clubcard holders when they order online.

The exchange rates provided by Tesco Bank are transparent and can be checked in real time on their website.

Do Tesco Clubcard Holders Get Better Exchange Rates?

Tesco Clubcard Membership Benefits

If you’re a Tesco Clubcard holder considering using Tesco Bank Travel Money, you might be wondering if this loyalty program can help you secure more favourable exchange rates.

The Clubcard Price offered by Tesco Bank Travel Money is designed to provide you with better rates compared to the standard ones advertised online at the time of purchase. This exclusive perk is accessible when you make your currency purchases online. To benefit from the Clubcard Price, you’ll need to input a valid Clubcard number during the transaction.

It’s important to note that exchange rates can fluctuate depending on the method you choose for purchasing your foreign currency. Whether you opt to buy in-store, online, or by phone, these rates may vary.

How to Order Travel Money from Tesco – A 9-step Guide

If you’re interested in obtaining travel money from Tesco, here’s a step-by-step guide for placing an online order:

  1. Visit the Tesco Bank Travel Money website.
  2. Choose your desired currency from the dropdown menu on the right-hand side.
  3. Indicate whether you possess a Tesco Clubcard. If you do, you’ll benefit from enhanced exchange rates.
  4. Select the amount you wish to order, either by choosing from the predefined options or entering a specific amount.
  5. Review the exchange rate and the amount of currency you’ll receive in exchange for your pounds.
  6. Click on ‘Buy Currency Online’
  7. Follow the on-screen instructions to place your order, including entering your Clubcard number (if applicable) and payment details. Note that online orders are payable by card only.
  8. Select either Home Delivery or Click & Collect, making the required delivery fee payment if applicable.
  9. Await the arrival of your travel money through postal delivery or head to your local Tesco Bank bureau on your chosen collection date to pick up your order.

The Collection and Delivery Process

If you opt for Click & Collect, you can conveniently locate your nearest Tesco store with a foreign exchange bureau by entering your postcode. You’ll receive a specified collection date, and your money will be ready for collection after 3 PM on that date. Don’t forget to bring photo ID and the card used for placing the order to verify your identity.

For home delivery orders, here’s what you can expect in terms of delivery times:

  • Orders placed before 1:30 PM from Monday to Thursday: Next day delivery.
  • Orders placed before 1:30 PM on Friday: Delivery on Saturday or Monday.
  • Orders placed after 1:30 PM from Monday to Friday, or anytime on Saturday or Sunday: Delivery within 2 working days.

Remember that someone must be present to sign for the delivery of travel money orders.

The Tesco Multi-currency Cash Passport

Tesco Bank offers an interesting alternative known as the Tesco Multi-currency Cash Passport. This prepaid travel money card allows you to load up to seven different currencies before your trip, enabling spending abroad just like you would with a regular debit card in the UK. The added benefit is the ability to lock in the exchange rate every time you load, reload, or switch between currencies.

However, there are a few considerations to keep in mind. The available currencies are limited to euros, US dollars, UK pounds, South African rands, Australian dollars, Canadian dollars, and New Zealand dollars. There are fees involved as well, including a £1.50 withdrawal fee at ATMs or a 2% commission on purchases made in UK Pounds.

The Wise Card – A Convenient Alternative to Currency Exchange

Wise Currency Card Lead Image

While Tesco Bank Travel Money provides a reliable option for obtaining foreign currency, it’s not the sole solution for managing your holiday expenses.

If you’re seeking more favourable exchange rates and a cashless approach, the Wise card is an attractive choice. This contactless international debit card can be used in over 150 countries, wherever Mastercard and Visa are accepted. This grants you the ability to make purchases in shops, restaurants, bars, and transport hubs worldwide.

When you use the Wise card, it automatically converts your pounds to the local currency at the mid-market exchange rate, with no additional margins or markups. There is only a modest currency conversion fee, or none at all if you already have the currency in your Wise account.

For cash needs, the Wise card allows you to withdraw up to £200 per month with no fees (up to two withdrawals). However, be mindful that overseas ATM operators may charge their own fees.

With the Wise card, you can enjoy the convenience of tapping and spending like a local, all while benefiting from a favourable exchange rate. Additionally, the Wise app allows you to manage your account, card, and expenses on the go.

By opening a Wise multi-currency account online, you can obtain a Wise card for a one-time cost of just £7, without any subscription fees. Be sure to review the Terms of Use for your region or check Wise fees and pricing for the most up-to-date information on costs and fees.


And there you have it – a comprehensive overview of Tesco Bank Travel Money and its operations, plus a cashless alternative for digital fans. If you prefer having foreign currency in hand before your trip, then Tesco Travel Money is certainly worth considering, particularly due to its lack of commission fees. Alternatively, you can conveniently visit your local Tesco store with a foreign exchange bureau to obtain your travel money instantly.

Remember, it’s advisable to conduct a quick comparison of exchange rates, as you may find more favourable options for obtaining foreign currency elsewhere but Tesco Travel Money solidifies its reputation with one of the more attractive offerings for travellers.

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