If you are a globetrotter, you know the pain of losing all that money to foreign exchange rates. The usual Debit and Credit cards operate at a high exchange rate in overseas locations, and they can cost you around 5 to 11 percent extra of the total transactional charge. So, how to get out of this situation and save some precious bucks? Well, thanks to the Digital Revolution entering into the financial sectors, we have travel cards serving as the knight in shining armor.
A travel card is a prepaid electronic card wherein you can load one or more foreign currencies for transactions on your next international trip. It is one of the most convenient methods of carrying foreign currency and paying for expenses on an overseas trip. You can think of this card as the quintessential Credit or Debit card whose purpose is to facilitate smooth transactions in foreign currency while traveling. However, nowadays, there are International Debit Cards that you can also use for domestic money transfers and other travel benefits, as well. Lastly, this card also permits money withdrawal abroad via ATMs.
What is a Multi-Currency Travel Card
There are two main types of these cards, namely:
- Single-currency Foreign Cards: As the name suggests, they can be loaded with only one type of currency. Moreover, single-currency Forex cards have a high-cross currency charge whenever you switch currencies and come with limited use.
- Multi-currency Foreign Cards – Simply put, multi-currency cards are variants of travel cards that allow you to load multiple currencies in a single card. They are optimal for people who always love doing international trips. You can load some cards with as many as 150 plus different currencies.
How to Get a Multi-Currency Foreign Travel Card
Easy to Carry and Use during International Travels
An international trip is a hectic affair, and you do not need your finances to add to the worry. Thus, the most significant benefit of a multi-currency travel card for frequent flyers is that they are simple to carry and use abroad. Instead of a hefty bundle of banknotes, which will take up a lot of space, and your peace of mind, isn’t it better to have a secure and all-encompassing electronic card that serves as your go-to substitute for cash? In addition, the lightweight and sleek design of these cards mean you can quickly put them into your pocket, wallet, or suitcase.
Helps You Save Money
The second benefit of forming a life-long bond with multi-currency foreign cards is that they help save money. The best travel cards are those that do not have any markup charges. When you use the usual Debit and Credit Cards abroad, they work at an extremely high exchange rate and can cost you around 5 to 11 percent extra of the total transactional charge. However, a travel card has no additional swiping charge at PoS counters abroad. All in all, you save more money, which can be utilized further in your travel experience.
What makes multi-currency cards a worthwhile investment is that they are widely accepted worldwide! You might be surprised to know that few travel cards have legitimacy in 150+ countries of the world. Likewise, you can use multi-currency foreign cards at around 2 million ATMs globally. The ATM Pin is usually included in the travel kit that comes with your physical card. Thus, if you plan to venture out on multinational trips soon; apply for a multi-currency card immediately.
You Get Protection against FOREX Fluctuations
One of the most distinguishing and sought-after features of a travel card is that it is immune to currency fluctuations in the FOREX market. You might already know that currencies are subject to constant exchange rate fluctuations, which can make expense management challenging. Thus, if you opt to travel with foreign currency in the form of cash, an unfavorable fluctuation can lead you to lose a significant amount of money.
However, with international cards, your hard-earned money is protected. When you load a multi-currency foreign card using a trusted online forex platform, the money is loaded at a fixed rate that cannot be changed. As the rates are locked in, you are protected against currency fluctuations. For instance, if you have loaded USD 1000 in your Forex card, its value will remain the same irrespective of alterations in the INR-USD exchange rate. The lock-in feature is a massive relief to international travelers. Especially during the current times when the Rupee value is changing at an unprecedented rate.
The fifth benefit of a multi-currency travel card for globetrotters is the associated security. Carrying physical money on international trips is a complete no. In case you lose the money, the chances of getting it back are close to none. However, with a top-tier travel card, you can focus on your itinerary. As the safety and security of your finances abroad are well taken care of.
The best global cards are enabled with a chip and pin technology that protects your money. Moreover, if you lose the card or it is stolen, you can easily block it, and the balance will be frozen. You can get the secondary card issued immediately. You can quickly transfer the funds to your secondary card. So, even in unannounced situations, a travel card gives you a sigh of relief.
Better Alternatives to Credit and Debit Cards
When it comes to an international trip, money-saving takes center stage, irrespective of the affluence of the travelers. International travelers often use debit cards to withdraw money from ATMs and make online purchases. But, seldom do they realize that each withdrawal comes with a high processing fee that can quickly burn a hole in the pocket.
On the contrary, opting for a reliable multi-currency foreign travel card can help you save 3.5 percent to 6.5 percent over your Credit or Debit card. Likewise, the free unloading facility of such cards means that you can obtain the unused balance in the form of INR after returning from your trip.
Real-time Expense Tracking
Keeping a timely check on your spending abroad is vital to ensure you do not go over budget. International travel cards display real-time expense tracking through which you evaluate all your international transactions in real time. Based on your preferences, you can turn the notifications on for all your international card purchases via SMS or email.
The best international travel cards come with personalized services, such as assistance through the immigration queue, help with baggage, and likewise. In addition, the 24/7 customer support ensures that you can ask for any account-related help at any time of the day.
Easy Online Transactions
Another relevant reason why travelers should apply for a multi-currency travel card is the ease and comfort of making online payments after moving to a new country. You can instantly withdraw cash through an ATM in a foreign nation. In addition, the card can be refunded or reloaded in just a few clicks via internet banking. Therefore, money management becomes a breeze when you have a reliable travel card.
You might be pleasantly surprised to know that some cards come with extra benefits. Such as airport lounge access and interest rates. For instance, you can find International Debit Cards with a 5 percent interest rate per annum. Meaning that your account continues to grow while you spend your overseas travels. Likewise, some cards also offer zero-balance savings accounts. Implying that you will not be required to maintain a specific minimum balance on your global card at all times.
So, there we have it, the top ten benefits of a multi-currency travel card for globetrotters.
How can You Apply for a Multi-Currency Foreign Global Cards
After you have decided which multi-currency card is the best for you based on a comparative analysis of different cards and your requirements, you can proceed with the application process.
- Visit the website of the card you want to apply
- Fill in the application form
- Submit the necessary documents
- Wait for the approval
- Pay the joining fee, and Viola, you are done!
You should remember that the physical, electronic card may take five to seven business days to arrive after your application has been approved. However, most cards allow you to make online transactions immediately after a successful application.
Some of the documents you may need to procure a global card are-
- PAN Card
- AADHAR Card
- Address Proof
- Passport-size photographs
So, there we have it, an in-depth analysis of how you can procure a multi-currency card from the comfort of your home. If you have international trips coming up or you are going to study abroad. Then it is best to apply for a travel card at the earliest.