When is nil not the same as nothing?

What’s the difference between ‘no commission’ and ‘no charge’? Well it could be quite a lot when you try to take back holiday money that you haven’t used. Many currency providers make a great play of telling you that they won’t charge commission when you take back unused currency after your holiday. But that doesn’t mean you’ll get all of your money back!

I got an email from someone who took some money back after having to cancel a holiday last week due to illness. They were offered £76 back for every £100 they spent a week ago.

And that wasn’t in commission charges that the company applied, purely in the difference between the price at which they sell currency and the price at which they buy it back.

And this cost is not covered in a travel insurance policy so you can’t claim it back there.

Some companies do have a policy of repaying you in full in certain circumstances, and I’m just waiting with baited breath to find out if cancellation due to illness is one such circumstance!

So be aware.

It’s not just a case of looking for the best rate, or looking for someone who won’t charge ‘commission’ for a buyback. You also have to be mindful of how much you’ll get back if you don’t use the money you exchanged in the first place. And that means studying the differences between the ‘we buy at’ and ‘we sell at’ columns before parting with your hard-earned cash.

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