Compare Prepaid Travel Cards

Compare our latest prepaid travel card deals and apply online to help stay on top of your spending when overseas and save on foreign exchange fees.

FairFX Multi-Currency Card
Setup fees Free
Overseas ATMs £1
Monthly fee Free
Foreign fees 0%
Get great rates abroad and up to 3.5% cashback at home at some of the UK’s top selected retailers. Spend and send money overseas for free in 20 major currencies. Sign up today with no monthly fees, cards can be used worldwide wherever Mastercard is accepted.
Free to use in 20 major currencies, otherwise 2.25%. Use in over 190 countries worldwide.
Post Office Travel Money Card
Setup fees Free
Overseas ATMs Varies
Monthly fee Free*
Foreign fees 0%
*A monthly maintenance fee of £2 will be deducted from your GBP balance 12 months after your card expires.
A cash withdrawal fee will be charged when withdrawing cash from a UK Post Office branch or from any ATM globally, this varies between currencies.
Wise
Setup fees £5
Overseas ATMs Free*
Monthly fee Free
Foreign fees 0%
*Up to £200 per month then 1.75%. Avoid exchange rate markups. Your money will always be converted at the lowest possible fee. Holds over 50 currencies. Spend money abroad at the mid-market exchange rate.
Revolut Metal
Setup fees Free
Overseas ATMs Free up to £800
Monthly fee £12.99
Foreign fees 0%
Free UK current account and free Euro IBAN account. Spend in over 150 currencies at the interbank exchange rate. No fee exchange in 30 fiat currencies. No fee ATM withdrawals up to £800 per month

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Our experts have been behind some of the most loved UK financial brands

We're on a mission to improve the finances of the nation by helping you to spend wisely and save money

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Finance.co.uk Team

Finding the best prepaid travel card for you

By Matt Fernell, Editor-in-Chief at Finance.co.uk.

Matt Fernell

Prepaid travel cards can make travelling abroad a lot easier. Here’s how to choose the perfect travel card for your spending abroad.

How to find the right prepaid travel card

Prepaid travel cards are a safe and convenient way to spend abroad without having to carry lots of foreign cash around with you. You can also avoid any potential fees and charges from using your debit or credit card while travelling.

To find the card that works best for you, consider the different types of cards available, and what fees they charge. 

Choose the right type of prepaid travel card

There are different types of prepaid cards you can choose from, and which is right for you will depend on where you’re travelling to, and how you plan to spend. 

  • Prepaid euro cards: This type of card is designed to be used when travelling in Europe, specifically in countries that use the euro. It sets the exchange rate when you load your travel money onto the card.

  • Prepaid US dollar cards: This is the same as a euro card, but your balance will be held in dollars. It is ideal if you are planning a trip to the US, but could be expensive to use anywhere else.

  • Prepaid multi-currency cards: This type of card lets you hold your balance in different currencies, like sterling, dollars, and euros. This is convenient if you’re travelling around countries and want to use the same card.

For all of these cards, the exchange rate will be fixed at the time you load money on to the card. If you do use them to spend in a currency not included on the card, then you may be charged a fee, or face a more expensive exchange rate. 

You could also use a sterling prepaid card, where you load your card with pounds and can then use it at home and abroad. 

When you spend or withdraw money, the sterling is converted into the relevant currency at the time of the transaction. This can be more flexible but makes it harder to budget as you won’t know what the exchange rate will be when you use the card.

Compare travel card charges

A prepaid currency card will have more charges and fees than most credit cards, so it’s important to be aware of these before getting one.

We show the following fees that each prepaid travel card above charges, so you can work out which will be the cheapest for you:

  • Setup fees: This is a one-off fee when you first purchase the card, and range between £1 and £15. Some providers will waive this fee if you agree to load a certain amount when you first get your card.

  • Overseas ATMs: This is charged every time you use your prepaid card to withdraw from a cash machine abroad. This is charged as a percentage of the amount withdrawn, e.g. 1%, or a flat rate, e.g. £1 per withdrawal.

  • Monthly fee: This is a fee you pay every month that you have the card until you cancel it. The amount charged varies, but it can range from between £5 and £15 a month.

  • Foreign fees: This is a fee charged for every transaction you make while abroad. Ideally look for a prepaid travel card that doesn’t charge foreign fees, as it could make spending abroad expensive.

It can be tempting to choose a card with the lowest fees, but make sure it offers everything you need first. Some cards also have extra benefits like cashback or discounts when you top up to a certain amount. 

What are the pros and cons of travel money cards?

There are plenty of advantages to using a travel money card. It offers security and simplicity when spending abroad, but it might not be the best travel money option. Here are some of the pros and cons of prepaid travel money cards.

Pros of prepaid travel cards

  • No need for cash: One of the main advantages is that a prepaid travel card removes the need to take a lot of physical cash with you that could be lost or stolen.

  • Budgeting: Prepaid cards are great if you want to stick to a fixed budget when travelling because you can’t exceed the amount you’ve pre-loaded without topping it up. 

  • No foreign exchange fees: You won't have to pay foreign exchange fees, as long as the currency on your card matches that of the country you’re using it in.

  • Multi-currency: Some prepaid travel cards will allow you to load several different currencies onto your card, stored in different ‘wallets’ - perfect if you’re travelling to several countries in one trip.

Cons of prepaid travel cards

  • Not always accepted: Despite being designed to work in any place that accepts Mastercard or Visa, frustratingly for travellers, some retailers, don’t accept these types of cards, including car rental companies.

  • Not every currency available: Most will have the 30 main currencies, but you may have to shop around to find one that offers the currency you need if it’s outside of this.

  • Withdrawal limits: Many cards will have a withdrawal limit per day, which can be small and frustrating if you’re not aware of them. If you plan to withdraw a lot of cash when abroad, avoid cards with a £100 daily limit.

  • Exchange rate: Because your exchange rate is set when you take out your travel card, you could lose out if the pound strengthens before you leave. However, the opposite is also true - if the pound weakens, you will have got a better deal.

Are there any alternatives to prepaid travel cards?

There are several alternatives to consider when trying to work out the best way to spend money abroad.

Specialist travel credit or debit cards could be a good alternative because they offer a near-perfect exchange rate (the interbank rate) when you spend or withdraw.

They’re also a bit less of a hassle because you don’t have to worry about pre-loading the card before you set off.

If you use a travel credit card, you’ll get Section 75 protection on purchases that cost between £100-£30,000.

Section 75 protection is where a card provider must protect your purchases, meaning that you are entitled to refunds if items are faulty, didn’t arrive, or if there are other problems with them.

You don’t get this protection with prepaid travel cards.

The information provided does not constitute financial advice, it’s always important to do your own research to ensure a financial product is right for your circumstances. If you’re unsure you should contact an independent financial advisor.

Frequently asked questions

Can you withdraw cash from a prepaid travel card?

Yes, you can withdraw cash from prepaid travel cards. You may have to pay a fee for this, either as a percentage of the amount you’re withdrawing, like 0.5% or 1%, or a fixed fee per transaction - usually around £1-£2.50.

There may be a withdrawal limit on the card, so check this if you plan to take a lot of cash out while abroad. Some limits are as low as £100 a day, so look for cards with higher limits, or even no withdrawal limit at all.

Are prepaid cards safe?

Prepaid travel cards are a really safe way to spend while you’re overseas. They’re safer than carrying cash that you may have to leave at your accommodation. You can also cancel these cards easily if they’re lost or stolen, making them even safer.

Where can I get prepaid travel cards from?

You can get a prepaid travel card by ordering one online from the provider of your choice. If your provider has a branch, you can pick them up from there to get your card instantly.

It should also be possible to get a prepaid travel card at the airport, depending on where you’re flying from. Many providers will have kiosks set up, but do note that the rates and charges could be more expensive when bought at the airport.

How quickly can I get a prepaid travel money card?

When ordering a prepaid travel card online, it will be posted directly to your door and should usually arrive within 3 days.

Can I use my prepaid holiday card in multiple countries that use the same currency?

Yes, if you’re visiting multiple countries that use the same currency, then you can use your card with no additional fees.

This is why getting a prepaid euro card is a good option for travellers in Europe because it allows you to use one card in multiple locations. If you’re visiting multiple destinations in the continent, it’s wise to search for the best prepaid travel card for Europe.

Can I use my prepaid travel card in the UK?

Yes, prepaid travel cards can be used within the UK. However, you may be subjected to fees when using these cards outside of the country where the loaded currency is used. This fee is usually 2.5-2.75% for every transaction and is called a cross-border fee.