Many people make resolutions heading into the new year, and from a travelers perspective this may be to travel more, seek out immersive experiences, or even learn a new language. Though for me, this new year meant cleaning the house. Tidying up our garage, donating clothes, and cleaning out some old drawers. And it’s quite amazing what you find when you clear out your old draws!
Like $450 in forgotten cash.
You’re probably wondering how it’s possible to just “forget” about $450 in your sock drawer. That money represents a flight, a couple of nights at a hotel, or even a couple of weeks throughout a cheap country in South East Asia.
And it probably sounds quite privileged to have just left that sort of money lying around. But I’m not able to spend it. My problem is that my $450 is in Turkish Lira. And Euro. And Pounds. And Canadian Dollars. And Czech Koruna. And honestly there are a lot of coins and bank notes that I don’t even recognize!
How to Convert Your Leftover Travel Money into Actual Cash
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If there’s one thing which all travelers have in common, it’s left over currency at the end of a trip. Unless you’re meticulous at forecasting travel costs and only withdraw the precise amount of cash you’ll need, (and let’s be honest, nobody is that good), it’s likely you’ll return home with a pocket full of rubles or yen.
And you could waste it on a $10 toblerone at the airport, or throw coins towards your hotel bill at the end, but most of us stick it in a jar and forget all about it. And heck, it’s actually fun to collect foreign currency; to keep it as a souvenir from the countries we visit. To have exotic coins on hand.
Sometimes it’s only a couple of dollars, sometimes it could be up to 30. But over 10 years of travel, all of that leftover currency adds up, and if you’ve been adding to your own jar over the years, you’ve probably got hundreds of dollars sitting there too.
How to Exchange Mixed Foreign Coins and Bank Notes
The problem here is quite obvious. You’re going to be on the receiving end of a very hostile bank teller if you rock up with a billion mixed foreign coins. And it’s the new year. Nobody deserves that kind of hate. In fact, banks probably won’t exchange it for you period. They’re always keen to sell us currency but are never too keen to take back the bits that are left.
But after figuring out that I had too much money to feel comfortable calling it a “souvenir”, I began researching how I could exchange all of my mixed coins. How to turn it into actual cash I could spend. Because surely it couldn’t be that difficult to exchange spare coins and obsolete notes.
Just as I was surprised by how much useless money I had accumulated, I was equally as surprised to actually find a company who would change it for me. I found a reliable, trustworthy source to exchange our old currency, called Leftover Currency.
How Leftover Currency Works
The team at Leftover Currency has years of experience trading international currencies. And they have an amazing website which makes it really simple to figure out how much your coins are worth, and then exchange it.
Step 1: Find out which banknotes and coins the company accepts for exchange. The complete list of exchangeable currencies and exchange rates is here. They exchange leftover cash for more than 50 different currencies, both circulating and obsolete.
Step 2: You can either download and print the exchange form, or do everything online. The online version is easy … as you add different currencies, the site creates an “online wallet”, which adds up your different coins and tells you how much cash you will receive. When ready, click on ‘Cash in now’. Fill in your details online. Choose a payment method. Make a note of the reference number.
Step 3: Send your currency by post to London (remember to get tracking). Include your filled out paper exchange form or your online reference number. They pay you within 5 days via Bank Transfer, PayPal or a check.
Things to Note
Though based in the UK, the service is available for international customers, and reading through their reviews, they’ve helped people from all continents exchange their leftover currency for cash.
If you don’t care for the money yourself and want to donate it to charity, Leftover Currency will donate the complete exchange value, and will even add an extra 5% on top.
They are a registered money service business, so even though it takes good faith and trust to send in currency prior to payment, they have an excellent reputation for always honoring that trust. You can tell by scanning the Leftover Currency reviews on the independent review site Trustpilot. And they have a great FAQ page which answers any doubts.
So, I’m genuinely interested … how much is in your jar of leftover travel cash?
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