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The Best Prepaid Cards for Travel in 2024

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When you travel, it’s essential to have a dependable way to pay. Whether visiting Europe or going worldwide, you don’t want to be stuck in a foreign place without local money. This is where prepaid travel cards come into play.

These nifty pieces of plastic (or digital cards, as the case may be) can save you from many a travel mishap, including but not limited to ruinous foreign transaction fees and an exchange rate.

But is it worth getting a prepaid travel card? The answer often leans towards ‘yes,’ especially if you’re keen on sidestepping some disadvantages of carrying cash or using your bank debit card abroad.

The best prepaid cards for travel in 2024

Key Takeaways

  • 1. Revolut Standard Account
  • 2. ASDA Travel Money Card
  • 3. Wise Travel Money Card
  • 4. Sainsbury’s Travel Money Card
  • 5. EasyFX Currency Card

The growth of multi-currency prepaid cards

People travelling often need easy ways to pay in different currencies. This need has made multi-currency prepaid cards popular.

With these cards, you can have several currencies in one account, which is handy for those visiting multiple currency areas. It’s like having a mini-bank in your pocket, tailored to your travel money needs.

So, how do these multi-currency cards stack up against using a regular bank account for withdrawing cash and making international payments? Traditional bank accounts often charge hefty fees for foreign transactions and can offer less competitive exchange rates.

Moreover, you may face restrictions on daily withdraw cash limits when using a bank account abroad, adding another layer of inconvenience to your journey.

On the other hand, multi-currency prepaid cards offer many benefits that often outstrip what your existing bank account can provide.

These include low or zero foreign transaction fees, favourable exchange rates, and greater control over your spending abroad. These cards allow you to lock in exchange rates in advance, avoiding the volatility often associated with foreign currency transactions.

Looking for an alternative? Discover swissmoney card

A swissmoney card

swissmoney offers virtual MasterCard prepaid cards for online and in-store shopping. These cards connect to a digital wallet where users manage their digital assets.

With swissmoney, you can make purchases at any store using one card, whether with fiat or crypto.

  • No hard spending limits
  • Multiple cards for different spending needs and currencies
  • Google Pay or Apple Pay for contactless payments
  • Competitive fees and global support
  • Easily set, adjust, and control using an app

Users can easily spend even cryptocurrency using a virtual as it instantly converts it to Euros.

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Fiat or crypto, Android or iOS we promise you the best Swiss quality experience.
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Top 5 cards in the UK

Navigating the world of spending abroad can be tricky. Many fees, exchange rates, and restrictions can take the biggest of your travel budget.

This guide gives you a comprehensive rundown of the top 6 prepaid travel cards designed to make your global expenditures as seamless, as possible.

1. Revolut Standard Account

Revolut card

Launched in 2015, Revolut has quickly become a market leader in digital banking services. The free Revolut Standard Account has a multi-currency card with accurate exchange rates, allowing you to hold 36 currencies and pay in 160+ countries

Currencies: 36 currencies.

Foreign ATM fee: 2% after the first £200/month or 5 withdrawals.

Max daily ATM withdrawal: £3,000 or currency equivalent.


  • Real exchange rates
  • Robust mobile app features
  • Supports cryptocurrency


  • Monthly fee after a trial period
  • Limited customer support
  • No cash back or interest earnings

📚Related: Using the Revolut Card Abroad

2. ASDA Travel Money Card

ASDA, one of the UK’s leading supermarket chains, also offers a prepaid travel money card designed for convenience. Load it before you travel and use it worldwide without worrying about exchange rate fluctuations.

Currencies: Up to 15 currencies.

Foreign ATM fee: Free.

Max daily ATM withdrawal: £500.


  • Vast network of reload locations
  • Straightforward user interface
  • Better rates for ASDA Rewards member


  • Less competitive exchange rate
  • Inactivity fee after non-use for 12 months unless the balance is zero
  • 2% GPB top-up fee

3. Wise Travel Money Card

Wise card

Formerly known as TransferWise, Wise is renowned for its transparent fee structure and actual exchange rate offers. The Wise Travel Money Card promises no hidden charges and has a user-friendly mobile app for easy management.

Currencies: 40+.

Foreign ATM fee: Free up to £200/month, then 1.75%.

Max monthly ATM withdrawal: £4,000.


  • Transparent fees
  • Real exchange rate
  • User-friendly mobile app


  • The card delivery fee is £12+ 
  • No interest earnings
  • Conversion fees on some currencies

📚Related: Wise vs Monzo

4. Sainsbury’s Travel Money Card

Sainsbury's Travel Money Card

A supermarket giant in the UK, Sainsbury’s also offers its prepaid travel card as part of its vast financial product lineup. Known for reliability and ease of use, it’s a good pick for the occasional traveller.

Currencies: 15.

Foreign ATM fee: Free.

Max daily ATM withdrawal: £500.


  • Simple fee structure
  • No fees for spending abroad in preloaded currencies
  • Higher withdrawal limit


  • Inactivity fee after 18 months
  • High exchange rate of 5.75%
  • Limited online features

5. EasyFX Currency Card

EasyFX Currency Card

A disruptor in the traditional forex market, EasyFX offers a no-nonsense approach to spending abroad. Their prepaid currency card comes with competitive rates and an easy-to-use app.

Currencies: 13.

Foreign ATM fee: Free

Max daily ATM withdrawal: £1,000, up to 3 withdrawals (max. £500 per withdrawal)


  • Zero foreign ATM fees
  • No load fees
  • Card blocking via the app


  • £2 inactivity fee after 12 months
  • £6 card replacement fee
  • Limited customer support

Now that you have a solid overview of what each card offers, you can make an informed choice based on your travel habits, spending behaviour, and financial needs. Whether it’s low fees, multi-currency support, or daily withdraw cash limits, a card matches your criteria.


  • All information provided is dated 22 April 2024 and may have been updated since. Please check each platform’s official website for the latest information.

How to choose the cards for travel

When looking for prepaid currency cards, a few key factors should guide your decision. These cards are meant to make your travel experience smoother, but choosing the wrong one could lead to a headache of additional costs and limitations.

Foreign transaction fees

Check the charges for using your card in other countries. Some travel cards don’t charge extra fees, saving you money when shopping abroad.

ATM withdrawal fees

Cash is still king in many parts of the world, so you’ll likely need to make ATM withdrawals during your travels. Checking the fees associated with withdrawing cash from foreign ATMs is crucial.

Exchange rates

Always look for a card that offers competitive exchange rates. Some cards even allow you to lock in an exchange rate in advance, reducing your exposure to currency fluctuations.

Spending abroad options

Consider what kind of spending options the card offers. Can it be used for pre-authorized transactions like hotel bookings? Does it support contactless payments or mobile wallet features like Apple Pay and Google Pay?

These conveniences can be handy when spending money abroad.

Monthly fees

Some prepaid travel cards come with monthly fees that can quickly eat into your travel budget. Always be aware of recurring charges and whether they can be waived by maintaining a minimum balance or other means.

Rates can change your spending

Exchange rates change due to various reasons like the economy or global events. Small changes can affect how much local money you get. When you buy something or use an ATM to withdraw cash abroad, these rates can make you spend more or less.

Be careful with on-the-spot currency change

Sometimes, shops offer to show your bill in your home currency. This is called Dynamic Currency Conversion (DCC). While it sounds helpful, DCC can have higher rates and extra charges. It’s often better to pay in the local money.

Competitive exchange rate

One of the advantages of using a multi-currency prepaid card is that many offer competitive rates. Some even provide the interbank or “real” exchange rate, which can save a lot compared to traditional debit or credit cards.

However, be mindful that the exchange rate offered by prepaid travel cards can also vary, so it pays to compare rates across different cards.

Timing is everything

If you know you’ll be travelling shortly and your chosen prepaid travel card allows you to lock in the exchange rate, loading your card when favourable could be beneficial.

In summary, the exchange rate is crucial to managing your finances while travelling. Ignoring it could result in less spending money and an overall more costly trip.

So, when selecting a prepaid travel card, don’t just look at the fees; take a comprehensive view that includes the exchange rate.

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How to avoid hidden charges

Travelling can be a fulfilling experience, but it can quickly turn sour if you’re hit with unexpected fees.

When using prepaid travel cards or your regular bank account to manage your finances overseas, you must be aware of the hidden costs that can eat into your travel budget. Let’s delve into how you can sidestep these stealthy expenses.

Be mindful of foreign exchange fees

When you’re spending abroad, it’s easy to overlook the foreign exchange fees that can accompany each transaction.

These fees are often a percentage of the amount paid and can add up quickly. To avoid these, opt for prepaid or multi-currency cards with low or no international transaction fees.

ATM withdrawal fees: they can drain your wallet

Withdrawing cash can be convenient but costly, especially abroad. Foreign ATM withdrawal fees can range from a fixed charge to a percentage of the amount withdrawn.

It’s crucial to look for cards that offer free or low-cost ATM withdrawals. Some cards even refund a certain number of foreign ATM fees each month, so read the fine print carefully.

Watch out for cross-border fees

Cross-border fees are additional charges levied for transactions made outside your home country.

They are separate from foreign transaction fees and can catch you off guard. Check your prepaid card’s terms and conditions to see if cross-border fees apply and how much they are.

Pre-authorised transactions can hold your money

Hotels and car rentals often place a pre-authorised hold on a certain amount as a security deposit. The problem is that this amount is ‘frozen’ and unavailable until the hold is released, which can take several days.

When using a prepaid travel card, ensure you have enough balance to cover your spending and any potential pre-authorised transactions to avoid declining your card.

Tips for keeping fees at bay

  1. Always choose to pay in local currency: To avoid Dynamic Currency Conversion fee and poor exchange rate, always pay in the local currency rather than your home currency when given the choice.
  2. Check for daily cash withdrawal limits: Some cards have a maximum daily limit on cash withdrawals, and exceeding this can result in additional fees.
  3. Read the terms and conditions: Before obtaining any prepaid card, read the terms and conditions carefully. Make sure you understand all the information on fees.
  4. Utilise mobile apps: Many prepaid travel cards have a mobile app that allows you to track your spending, view your balance, and even receive alerts for any additional fees charged.

Prioritise cards that align with your spending habits, and always be mindful of the fine print to keep your travel expenses in check.

What to do if your card expires or is lost

It’s worrying if you lose your card or it expires during a trip. Being without money abroad is tough, but there are clear steps to fix the problem and protect your bank account.

If your card expires

  1. Check the expiry before you leave: Before you travel, always check the expiration date on your prepaid card to ensure it will remain valid throughout your trip.
  2. Contact the card provider: Some prepaid card providers automatically send a replacement card before your existing one expires. If you haven’t received yours, contact the customer service team.
  3. Virtual card: If your prepaid travel card expires while you’re still abroad, some providers offer a virtual card that can temporarily be used for online transactions until your physical card arrives.
  4. Secondary card: Always consider having a secondary card from another provider or using your existing bank account as a backup. This ensures that you have an alternative method to access your funds.

If your card is lost or stolen

  1. Immediate action: Contact your card provider to report it lost or stolen. This will prevent any unauthorised transactions and limit your liability for misuse.
  2. Block the card: Many providers have a mobile app feature that allows you to temporarily block the card, preventing any further transactions until the situation is resolved.
  3. Replacement card: Most providers offer expedited shipping for a replacement card, even when you’re abroad. Some might charge a fee for this service, so be aware.
  4. Emergency cash services: Some prepaid cards have a feature that allows emergency cash withdrawals from affiliated local banks or cash services, keeping you afloat until your replacement card arrives.
  5. Activate backup: If you’ve prepared well, you’ll have a secondary payment option like another prepaid travel card or a debit card linked to your existing bank account.

Protecting your bank account

  1. Separate funds: It’s wise not to store all your funds in one place. Use your existing bank account as a backup and transfer money to your prepaid card as needed.
  2. Two-factor authentication: Enable two-factor authentication on your existing bank account to add an extra layer of security.
  3. Regular monitoring: Monitor your account activity and immediately report suspicious transactions to your bank.
  4. Contact local authorities: If your card is stolen, you must file a report with the local police, as your bank may require this documentation.

While losing a card or dealing with its expiration can be stressful, especially when you’re far from home, knowing the steps to take can make the process far less daunting. Be proactive in your preparations and respond diligently to ensure you’re never stranded.


Selecting the right prepaid card for travel is a choice that can make or break your trip. With features like multi-currency support, cards like swissmoney and Revolut rise above the pack. Others like Wise and ASDA offer specialised perks for the frequent traveller.

In an ever more interconnected world, a multi-currency card is indispensable for hassle-free travel. By picking the right card, you save money and gain peace of mind, allowing you to focus on making the most of your journey.

Frequently Asked Questions

How does the local cumulti-currencymy prepaid card?

Using a multi-currency card allows you to load multiple currencies, offering the flexibility to spend in the local currency of your travel destination. This usually means avoiding foreign exchange fees and enjoying a competitive exchange rate.

However, if your card does not support the local currency, you may incur foreign transaction fees, making it essential to check supported currencies before you travel.

Are there any credit card providers that offer prepaid travel cards?

Some credit card providers also offer prepaid travel cards as financial products. These cards often come with features similar to those of a regular credit or debit card, like reward points or cashback on foreign spending, but without the need for credit checks.

They can be an excellent option for those who want the benefits of a credit card without the risk of accumulating debt.

What are load fees, and how can they impact my travel budget?

Load fees are charges that some prepaid card providers impose when you load money onto your card. These fees can be fixed or a percentage of the total load amount.

While some cards offer free initial loads, subsequent top-ups may attract these fees. It’s crucial to factor in load fees when budgeting for your trip, as they can add up and impact your overall travel money available for spending.

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Renata Pacheco

Renata is a seasoned financial market expert with over 30 years of experience in journalism and content creation, primarily focusing on the financial market. Throughout her extensive career, she has worked with leading financial institutions such as Citibank Brasil, Fiserv in Latin America, and other notable financial entities, further honing her expertise and credibility in the sector.

For more than six years, Renata has also been writing for the crypto market, collaborating with financial publications in Brazil, the US, and Europe. Her deep understanding and extensive knowledge make her a respected voice in the industry, appreciated for her ability to demystify complex financial concepts and market trends. This skill enables her to make financial insights accessible to a wide audience, from novice investors to seasoned professionals.

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Please be advised that the information presented in this article is intended for general informational purposes only. It should not be construed as professional advice from swissmoney. It is important to note that swissmoney does not act as a financial adviser, and individuals are strongly encouraged to seek independent advice from qualified legal, financial, or accounting professionals before making any decisions related to cryptocurrency investments. Furthermore, investing in cryptocurrency assets carries inherent risks, and individuals should be aware that they may potentially lose all of their invested capital.

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