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Why a Forex Card is Better than Cash for You as a Student Abroad

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Studying abroad is an opportunity and a responsibility. An opportunity to gain quality education and a responsibility because you will be staying alone, probably for the first time in your life. So, while you will have your much-awaited freedom, you will also need to be able to cook your meals, do your grocery shopping and laundry, and pay your bills. This means you must learn how to manage your finances efficiently and effectively.

It is easy to lose time and your concentration on your studies when you have to take care of so many things at once. While the other stuff is relatively easy, managing your finances is a whole different ball game. It can be as complex as you make it, or it could be as simple as making some smart decisions.

Until a few years back, debit and credit cards were not a big part of monetary transactions. Keeping cash handy provided some peace of mind, especially to parents. But, with increasing digitization, card payments and electronic payments modes have become mainstream and are offering more convenience and safety.

What is the Foreign Exchange Market?
Word Forex on the background of one hundred dollar bills

So, when studying abroad, using a forex card makes more sense than keeping cash. Most of the countries around the world are embracing cashless or digital payments. The smart thing to do is join the digital revolution and stay in sync with the times.

Cashless Payments are Easy

In addition to credit and debit cards, cashless payments now also include digital modes of payments like mobile wallets and Peer-to-Peer money transfer. In case of cashless payments when abroad, prepaid forex cards make payments much simpler. A few decades ago, travellers cheques were the preferred mode of carrying large amounts of cash. But they were slow to be processed and could only be redeemed at a select few places. And it was not unusual for the exchange rate to vary from one place to the other.

Also Read: Why Travellers Cheques Are Dying Out

In addition to credit and debit cards, cashless payments now also include digital modes of payments like mobile wallets and Peer-to-Peer money transfer. In case of cashless payments when abroad, prepaid forex cards make payments much simpler. A few decades ago, travellers cheques were the preferred mode of carrying large amounts of cash. But they were slow to be processed and could only be redeemed at a select few places. And it was not unusual for the exchange rate to vary from one place to the other.

Advantages of Prepaid Forex Card

Travellers cheques are no more the preferred mode of carrying foreign exchange. They have been replaced by prepaid forex cards that make the whole process easier and more efficient. With a prepaid forex card, there’s no need to worry about the exchange rates, nor is there the worry of losing your money if you lose the card.

A forex card is the smarter option to use for your expenses abroad. Especially as a student.

Prepaid Forex Cards Vs Cash

Carrying cash is a risky proposition. After all, cash once lost is almost always irretrievable. And it also affects our spending. When we have cash in hand, we tend to spend more. But this is just one of the disadvantages of carrying cash over a forex card. While cash may be useful in some situations, the advantages of a forex card far outweigh the advantages of carrying cash.

Difference between Forex Card Vs Cash

Prepaid Forex Cards Cash
Prepaid forex cards have better exchange rates than cash. Therefore, you can buy more foreign currency in a prepaid forex card than as cash, with the same amount of money. Cash has higher conversion rates and may vary from one dealer to the next.
Prepaid forex cards are a safer option opposite to carrying cash around. Furthermore, Forex cards are now secured by chip and pin technology that ensures your money is safer than ever. Cash is comparatively a riskier option and needs careful handling. Imagine carrying $1,000 in cash. Besides, cash once lost can never be retrieve.
If you somehow manage to lose your prepaid forex card, you can have it blocked immediately. You can also have your card replaced or activate your backup forex card. Cash that is lost, remains lost. The only thing you can do is lodge a complaint and then hope for the best.
You receive an SMS or email alert for all the transactions you do on a prepaid forex card. This helps you to keep a track of your money and keep a check on your spending. Cash transactions are difficult to track unless you keep a diligent track of your spending. Other than a receipt, which needs to be carefully preserved, a cash transaction is untraceable.
Some forex cards allow you to load multiple currencies in the same card. This is most useful when you are visiting new countries as a part of student exchange program or on excursion. Imagine carrying multiple currencies in cash and then trying to keep a track of your spending in addition to the exchange rates.

Ensure Security with Forex Cards

A forex card is the most secure option to keep all your money safe as a student. It ensures that you can have access to all your money whenever you need it and guarantees its safety. Thomas Cook has a wide range of prepaid forex cards that make it easier to navigate the complexities of foreign exchange.

The Thomas Cook One Currency Card is accepted in over 200 countries across the world. It also helps you to take care most of your expenses as a student studying abroad.

The long list of benefits of the One Currency Card makes life easier and leaves you free to concentrate on your studies.

Benefits of One Currency Card

  • It is chip and PIN protected.
  • There are no cross-currency costs anywhere in the world.
  • It provides access to 35.2 million establishments and 2.2 million MasterCard ATMs worldwide.
  • The One Currency Card is not linked to your bank account and lost, or stolen cards are replaced for free.
  • It can be reloaded/topped up from anywhere in the world.
  • You can manage your card online.

Thomas Cook’s Borderless Prepaid Card also ensures that you worry less about the money and give undivided attention to your studies.

You can load up to 8 currencies in one card.

  • It is chip and PIN protected.
  • It is not linked to your bank account, which ensures your peace of mind.
  • Lost or stolen cards can be replaced for free.
  • It can be reloaded from anywhere in the world.
  • You receive an SMS or email alert for every transaction you make.

Forex card is an easier way to manage your money when you are a student abroad. It takes care of all the intricacies of foreign exchange, as a result, leaving you free to concentrate on the more important things, like your studies.

Also Read: Things Every Traveller Needs Know Before Going Abroad

Some Useful Tips

In many countries, students are eligible for a lot of discounts and tailor-made offers. Be sure to ask around for any offers that will help you to stretch your money a lot farther. Many universities or colleges issue student discount cards that will help you to avail these offers. But mostly your valid student ID works too.

Here’s how you can save money and make the most of your experience as a student abroad.

  • Use public transport. Most countries have an excellent public transport system that also offers discounts to students.
  • Use bicycles to commute short distances or to get around the campus because it is free and healthy!
  • Make local friends who can introduce you to new cultural experiences.
  • Set aside funds for any unforeseen expenses.
  • Keep an eye on your expenses and check your budget regularly.

These tips will not only ensure you an enjoyable experience, but it will also open you up to new experiences and therefore, create memories for life.

All the best!


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