Travelex Review byCurrencyComparison.co.uk
3 out of
Travelex has been voted 3/5 or 77% out of 761 recommendations. CurrencyComparison.co.uk has researched their Foreign Exchange Business and we suggest you read our full review before using Travelex
Who are Travelex?
So who are Travelex? Travelex was founded in central London by Lloyd Dorfman in 1976. The foreign exchange company focuses primarily on bureau de change services, travel money, pre-paid travel credit cards and international payments.
In November 2000 Travelex expanded operations by purchasing the Thomas Cook worldwide foreign exchange company for £440 million. In 2010 Travelex sold its card programme management division to MasterCard for £290 to reduce debts and in 2011 Travelex sold its global business payments division to Western Union for £606 million.
A currency calculator feature gives visitors the option of seeing a quick spot transfer rate or a rapid passport card reload. The rate shown is 1.136 GBP to USD when the actual mid- market rate was 1.422 GBP to USD, so the rate of exchange can immediately be seen to be uncompetitive. These are the best rates Travelex offers, so purchases in any of the 1,400 stores and 1,250 ATMs will incur additional fees.
Travelex / Order your travel money online
Why should I use Travelex?
Travelex has an 8.8 out of 10 star review on TRUSTPILOT with 18,705 reviews. Complaints regarding fees include disappointment with very poor currency exchange rates. Recently a traveller exchanged euro for Canadian dollars at Heathrow’s Travelex branch, noting Travelex’s online rate of exchange was 1.39. He was ‘double charged for conversion fees’ resulting in receiving a rate of 1.21, much less than his calculation online through Travelex might have been.
Yelp Reviews award Travelex 2.5 stars out of 5 with 23 reviews. Consistent complaints about very bad exchange rates that don’t match Travelex’s advertised rates of exchange abound. Significant losses are reported when clients use currency buy-back guarantee and find they’re again out of pocket for more than their banks would charge.
Order your travel money online
Travelex Passport Travel cards are rated 1.7 out of 5 on ReviewCentre with only 17% of clients recommending them. Numerous issues regarding reloading cards kept many holiday travellers unable to access the money they’d loaded. Other issues regard customer service which was described as ‘robotic’ by clients spending hours on telephone ( at long distance rates) frustrated by an inability to resolve card issues. Also hidden rates, card not compatible with many ATMs were reported universally.
Travelex’s partnerships with other large industry firms implies an established leadership role in foreign exchange, however bigger, well established firms like Western Union sacrifice good rates for spot transfers for convenience. If Travelex cards worked well they’d mitigate paying high rates for bureau de charge travel money, but since the cards aren’t a good value, travellers should be aware of the problems before trusting them abroad. Lastly the bad rate of exchange for leftover travel money reduces the score for Travelex to 3 out of 5 stars.