Travelex Money Card | Review & Feature Comparison

Travelex Money Card

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Travelex Money Card
Travelex Money Card
Top up your card with your choice of 10 available currencies: Euros, British pounds, New Zealand dollars, US dollars, Canadian dollars, Singapore dollars, Japanese yen and Hong Kong dollars.
Free replacement card if you lose yours.
Low minimum load amount of $100.
$100
$5,000
$0

Pros & cons

What's good?

What's not so good?

Top up your card with your choice of 10 available currencies: Euros, British pounds, New Zealand dollars, US dollars, Canadian dollars, Singapore dollars, Japanese yen and Hong Kong dollars.
Free replacement card fee.
Low minimum load amount of $100.
The currency conversion fee of 5.95% does not apply if you top up using one of the 10 available currencies.
A high currency conversion fee of $2.95 when converting an amount from another currency in Australia.
Disclaimer: Reviews rely upon third party information that may not be correct or may be changed without Credit Card Compare’s knowledge. You must carefully consider your own circumstances before making any commitments and confirm all offers and terms with credit card providers before accepting them. Please refer to our T&Cs for more.

Our review

Our review of the Travelex Money CardReviewed by Yvonne Taylor

So you’re about to set off on your first big overseas trip?

Or maybe you’re a seasoned traveller, accustomed to crossing borders and handling multiple currencies – possibly even someone who can remember the bad old days, with a choice limited to clunky traveller’s cheques or wads of insecure cash – but currently frustrated by unpredictable exchange rates and high credit card foreign transaction and ATM withdrawal fees?

Whichever category you fall into, you’ll want to know about the Travelex Money Card, the new card for smart travellers who want to lock in currency exchange rates, minimise costs and manage their travel budget on the go.

Get it once, use it on every trip

The Travelex Money Card is a prepaid MasterCard. Once you have it you can keep it to use for every overseas trip you make. There’s no annual fee to pay, and when you’re ready to travel you can simply top up the card with amounts of your choosing in whichever currencies you think you’ll need.

However, there is a small fee to pay every month after a year of no activity in the card account, so if you have long gaps in your overseas travel itinerary, you’ll probably want to close your account at the conclusion of your trip, and get a new card when you are next ready to travel.

Lock in exchange rates to fix your budget

A sudden dip in the value of the Australian dollar, or a surge in the currency of the country you are visiting, can put a dampener on your holiday or increase your business costs if you are relying on a credit card to pay your way. That’s because credit cards convert foreign currencies back into Australian dollars on the exchange rate applying on the day you make each individual purchase.

But the Travelex Money Card potentially lets you pick the best exchange rate for all your foreign currency spending. For example, if you’re not travelling to the US until July, but the Aussie dollar looks strong in April, you can load your card right then with all the US dollars you think you’ll need. You’ll then have a fairly accurate idea of how much the cash spending part of your trip is going to cost – no nasty surprises.

Load multiple currencies onto a single card

Travelling to lots of countries in one trip? You can choose to load your card with any or all of ten currencies: US dollars, British pounds, euros, Japanese yen, New Zealand dollars, Canadian dollars, Singapore dollars, Hong Kong dollars, Thai baht, or even Australian dollars. The nine foreign currencies are all available for purchase online or in-store (Travelex stores and agents). Australian dollars can be loaded onto your card in-store only.

This list of offered currencies may change. If you’re going somewhere unusual, check that your required currency is available before you order the card.

It’s a good idea to try to anticipate all the currencies you are likely to need on your trip, and the probable amounts. You can, however, make withdrawals in a currency you don’t already have on the card, provided you have the equivalent amount remaining on the card in another currency. You will be charged a 5.95% fee, only from countries outside of the 10 available currencies.

Keep costs to a minimum

Unlike most credit cards, there’s no annual fee to pay when you have a Travelex Money Card. Here are some other fees you won’t have to worry about:

  • No overseas ATM withdrawal fee charged by Travelex (although the operator of the overseas ATM may charge a fee)
  • No ‘cash over the counter’ withdrawal fee
  • No commission charged for initial load and top-ups of foreign currency if you organise it through Travelex itself or one of its agents, online or in-store.
  • No replacement card fee if your card is lost, stolen or damaged

Secure and convenient

Carrying a prepaid Travelex Money Card is far safer than carrying cash. For a start, it occupies far less space in your wallet: it’s inconspicuous.

Access to the funds on your card is protected by a PIN (except for amounts under $100 or the local equivalent, because it’s a contactless card).

The Travelex Money app lets you check your balance, view transaction history, get a PIN reminder and move money between currencies.

If your card is lost, stolen or damaged, Travelex has 24/7 global assistance for quick, secure card replacement and, if necessary, an amount of emergency cash equal to the amount remaining in your card account.

How to get the card

There’s a very simple process involved to acquire and use the card:

  • Order your card online, by phone, or in a Travelex store (located in major Australian airports, in city centres and suburban shopping malls)
  • Pick up your card from a Travelex store
  • Register your card online
  • Use the card to pay for your purchases, anywhere in the world
  • When necessary, top up the currency amounts online, or by phone, or by using the Travelex app, or in a Travelex store (in multiple locations in 26 countries)

How to use the card

Use the card just as you would any debit or credit card, to pay for:

  • Restaurant meals or drinks
  • Shopping (including online)
  • Travel (airfares, train tickets, etc.)
  • Tours and entertainment
  • ATM cash withdrawals in local currency

Travelex recommend that you don’t use the card to pay for hotel accommodation, for car hire or on board a cruise ship. That’s because this type of merchant will often need to pre-authorise the estimated amount of your final bill, meaning that these funds will be temporarily inaccessible, even though only the actual amount of the final bill will be deducted from your card account.

A platinum card with platinum benefits

Since your Travelex Money Card is a platinum MasterCard, it comes with exclusive discounts and benefits attached. They include:

  • Free global Wifi access from Boingo Hotspots (register for a Boingo account using your Travelex MasterCard number and download the app).
  • MasterCard Travel Assistance Service, available globally 24/7, both before and during your trip (e.g. help with passport, visa and immunisation requirements, lost passport or luggage, currency exchange rates, overseas weather information, local customs, emergency language interpretation, medical referral and more).
  • Discounts on Golden Tours – day trips, theatre tickets, walking and bike tours, coach tours, river cruises and other attractions.
  • A newsletter to keep you up-to-date with the latest deals and discounts

There are some fees to pay

Although you can avoid credit card foreign currency transaction fees and overseas ATM fees, there are inevitably some fees associated with a Travelex Money Card. Many of them can be avoided, however. They include:

  • Fee for loading AUD: The card is designed primarily to be a foreign currency card, not an Australian dollar card, although you can load it with Australian dollars and use it in Australia if you wish. But AUD loads will attract a fee of 1.1% of the amount loaded, and some Travelex agents have a minimum fee of $15. This means that if you are loading less than $1,364, your fee will be higher than 1.1%.
  • Fee for AUD withdrawals: There’s a steep 2.95% fee for AUD withdrawals in Australia. So a $500 ATM withdrawal would cost $14.75.
  • Fee for loading via BPAY: A fee of 1% of the amount loaded will be deducted from any funds in any currency sent to the card account via BPAY, unless you first book the transaction through Travelex.
  • Fee for currency conversion: As already mentioned, if you have an insufficient amount of the required currency on your card when you attempt to make a withdrawal, you will pay a 5.95% fee (“foreign exchange margin”) to have the amount converted from another currency on your card.
  • Fee for additional card: It isn’t possible to get a supplementary card on your account for someone else to use. But for a fee of $5, payable when you first apply for the card, you can get an additional card as a back up (in case the first card is damaged or lost, for example).
  • Monthly inactivity fee: You will be charged an inactivity fee of $4 per month if there has been no activity on the card for 12 months. If you do not make regular overseas trips, you will probably want to withdraw any remaining balance from the card on your return to Australia, and close the account. When your next trip comes around, you can get a new card.
  • Card account closure fee: A charge of $10 is made if you request closure of the account.

Be aware of limits and restrictions

You can only have one Travelex card in your name (plus a supplementary card if required) at any one time. Your name does not appear anywhere on the card (although there is a space for your signature), apparently because issuing the card is quicker if there is no need to emboss the cardholder’s name.

There’s a minimum initial load or top-up amount of $100, and a maximum of $100,000 (or foreign currency equivalents of these amounts.)

The maximum amount you can withdraw from an ATM in any one day is $3,000, or the local currency equivalent.

There’s no minimum age limit when you apply for a Travelex Money Card in-store, although you must be at least 18 to make an online currency purchase.

The card can’t be used in Iran, North Korea, Sudan, Syria and the Crimean peninsula.

Competing cards

Many banks have their own travel cards, which work in a similar way to the Travelex Money Card. But some cards charge for the initial card set-up and cash loading, and may charge a fee for each top-up as well. However, there are competing cards which charge a lower fee for currency conversion than the 5.95% charged by Travelex.

Think about the ways in which you are likely to use your card, and choose a card which charges least for the type of use you expect to make of it.

A great card for the organised traveller

The Travelex Money Card is ideal for the overseas traveller who likes to plan ahead and stick to a budget. You can minimise your costs and get the best exchange rates by working out in advance how much you are likely to need in each currency, and then relax knowing that Travelex has services in place to help you design your trip, take advantage of discounts, and come to your rescue if you run into trouble with your card or other problems.

Disclaimer: Reviews rely upon third party information that may not be correct or may be changed without Credit Card Compare’s knowledge. You must carefully consider your own circumstances before making any commitments and confirm all offers and terms with credit card providers before accepting them. Please refer to our T&Cs for more.

The basics

About this card

24 hour ATM cash withdrawal limit
$3,000
24 hour POS transaction limit
$15,000
Available currencies
AUD, CAD, EUR, GBP, HKD, JPY, NZD, SGD, THB, USD
Minimum load amount
$100
Maximum load amount
$5,000
Maximum load amount (annual)
$100,000
Multiple currencies on single card
Yes

Rates & fees

Fees

Account closure fee
$10.00
ATM withdrawal fee (domestic)
$2.95
ATM withdrawal fee (overseas)
$0
Foreign exchange fee
Mastercard rate plus a margin of 5.95%
Inactivity fee (monthly)
$4.00
Initial load fee
$0
Issue fee
$1.1
Reload fee
$0 (when booked via Travelex)
Reload fee via BPAY
1%

Minimum criteria for this card

What you need before applying

Be over 18 years old
You are a resident or citizen of Australia
Temporary residents are eligible
Disclaimer: The minimum criteria are intended only to be a guide. Your application may still be rejected by the bank even if you can answer 'Yes' to all the minimum criteria. The final decision regarding your application is up to the bank.

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