Is It Better To Exchange Currency At Home Or Abroad? Know the Details Here 

Exchange Currency At Home Or Abroad
Home » International Money Transfer » Is It Better To Exchange Currency At Home Or Abroad? Know the Details Here 

Currency exchange is one of the most important factors which you consider while planning your journey to study abroad. There is a lot of confusion among students and their parents about currency exchange. Currency Exchange simply refers to exchanging the currency of one country for the currency of another country of similar value as per the exchange rate. You can get your currency exchanged in your own country or in the country where you are travelling. 

However, it’s better to exchange your currency abroad as there are chances that you may get a better exchange rate. Let’s understand the pros and cons of currency exchange at home or abroad.

Advantages of Currency Exchange At Home

There are several advantages of currency exchange in your own country. You are aware of the banking hours and places where you can perform the exchange easily without any rush. You can do that before travelling to another country so that you don’t have to face any kind of trouble after your arrival in a foreign country. Let’s understand the major benefits of Currency Exchange at home:

Convenience in Currency Exchange

Exchanging currency before you travel is convenient because you can do it at your own pace and during regular banking hours. You won’t need to rush around looking for a currency exchange office upon arrival. Also, you may have several contacts who you know and can ask all your queries patiently. You also do not have to face any language barrier when you are exchanging your currency in your country. 

Also Read: How to Manage Money while Studying Abroad

Familiarity with the Bank/Exchange Center

Dealing with your local bank or credit union can provide a sense of familiarity and trust, making the exchange process feel more secure. For example, if you have an existing account in Axis Bank then there are chances that you may know the officials personally. Also, you have a bank account with them and they can offer you a lot of add-on benefits required for your abroad journey. 

Planning Ahead

Exchanging currency at home allows you to budget more effectively, knowing exactly how much money you have available for your trip. You will be able to plan properly for your expenses as you already have the currency of that particular country and you are aware of the real value of the same. 

Avoid Airport Rates

Currency exchange rates at airports are notoriously less favourable than those offered by banks or dedicated exchange offices. When you land at an airport in another country many merchants are there offering currency exchange. At that time, you might avail of their services even if you know that they are charging higher rates as you will see your convenience. Ultimately, you are paying high exchange rates while performing the transactions at the airport. So, it’s better to exchange your currency in your own country before moving abroad. 

Drawbacks of Currency Exchange at Home

If you analyse the overall scenario of exchanging currency at home you will see it as the most convenient mode. However, there are some major drawbacks of currency exchange at home. Most of the time you will get less competitive rates for currency exchange. While your local bank may offer convenience, they may not provide the most competitive exchange rates, meaning you could get less foreign currency for your money. Also, several banks often have a limited selection of foreign currencies available, so if you’re travelling to a less common destination, you may need to order currency in advance. 

Also Read: How Does a Nostro Account Work?

Advantages of Currency Exchange Abroad

When you go to a bank or any merchant for currency exchange in a foreign country you get a cheaper exchange rate as compared to your home country. Currency exchange at a local rate is always a good idea as it increases the overall value of your currency. You can also use the local ATMs to withdraw cash at the ongoing exchange rate. Let’s understand some benefits of currency exchange abroad:

Local Rates

Exchanging currency abroad can sometimes get you better rates because local exchange offices are more likely to offer competitive rates, especially in tourist-heavy areas. This is always a better option especially when you are travelling to a country for tourist purposes. If you are a student studying in that country then also it is beneficial as you will be able to manage your finances more effectively.

Access to ATMs

Using local ATMs to withdraw cash in the local currency is often an excellent option, as it provides competitive exchange rates and convenience. Also, you will not be required to carry a lot of cash from your country while going abroad. You can use an ATM and withdraw cash anytime as per your requirements. 


You only exchange the currency you need when you need it, avoiding potential losses from fluctuating exchange rates. For example, if you are carrying INR 2 lakhs in cash and you spent only INR 1 lakh then the remaining amount of money will be with you and you can use it again in India. If you will exchange all the cash at a time then there are chances that you may face some loss due to fluctuation in exchange rates. 

Drawbacks of Currency Exchange Abroad

Currency exchange abroad will make you worried at times because you are not familiar with the process which that country is following. Also, if you run out of cash it’s not necessary that you will arrange the local currency in exchange quickly. For example, if you are in a remote or less-travelled area of a country the exchange facilities may be very limited or nonexistent. This will create challenging situations for you. 

Depending on your bank and the foreign ATM, you may incur transaction fees for using foreign ATMs. Also, there are risk of scams associated with the currency exchange. So it is suggested to deal only with the reputed and trusted merchants or unions. 

Difference Between Currency Exchange at Home and Abroad 

Both currency exchange at home and abroad have their own advantages and disadvantages. You need to figure out the best-suited option for you. Check some major differences between the two:

Currency Exchange at HomeCurrency Exchange Abroad
Easy to transact due to familiarity with bank/unions Difficulties as the places are unknown 
Lesser chances of fraud/scamHigher chances of fraud
Convenient as you know the systemInconvenience as the place is new and you have to locate the branch
You may have to pay higher exchange ratesHigher chances of getting favourable exchange rates
Low flexibility as you have to get all your money exchanged at onceFlexibility is high as you will exchange only the required amount of currency


Which place is best for currency exchange?

A reputed bank which has a dedicated currency exchange facility or a reputed credit union are best place for currency exchange.

Why should I exchange my currency in my home country before travelling abroad?

Currency exchange is better in your own country as you can avoid paying transaction fees for using foreign ATMs. 

Is it good to get currency exchange at airports?

Currency exchange at airports usually charges a high exchange rate. It is advised to get your currency exchanged in your country or reputed merchants in foreign countries. 

The decision to exchange currency at home or abroad depends on your preferences, travel destination, and circumstances. In general, a combination of both approaches may be the most sensible choice. Exchange a small amount of currency at home for convenience and peace of mind, and then rely on local ATMs and exchange offices for the majority of your currency needs while abroad. Always research exchange rates and fees in advance and exercise caution when exchanging currency with unfamiliar vendors abroad.

To know more about the currency exchange, the best bank accounts for students, forex and banking experience for global students or international money transfers, reach out to our experts at 1800572126 to help ease your study abroad experience.

Related Blogs
Benefits of Using Forex Cards while Studying Abroad
Safest Ways to Carry Money Abroad
Best Ways to Use Credit Cards for College Students 
About Shekhar Suman

Shekhar is a versatile writer with a passion for sharing knowledge and creativity. With expertise in crafting informative blogs on study abroad and finance, Shekhar helps readers navigate the complexities of education and financial planning. Most of his writings blend the practicality of finance and the beauty of language, making a meaningful impact in both spheres. Beyond his professional pursuits, he finds solace in the writing Shayari.

Leave a Comment

Coverage Under Tata AIG Travel Health Insurance for Students Best Overseas Travel Policies for Students Cheapest Forex Cards for Students Best Picks for Student Travel Insurance Top Banks Offering Education Loans for New Zealand Studies! Apply for YES Bank Education Loan Top Up in Easy Steps Top Currency Exchange Providers in Toronto Documents Required for SBI Takeover of Education Loans Where to Exchange Currency in Birmingham? Major Pros and Cons of Student Loan Consolidation

Send Money Abroad in <15 mins


Request a callback


Get an education loan at the lowest interest rate


Thank you! Your call request has been submitted

Our team will connect with your shortly

aero Want to transfer money abroad at the cheapest rates?