Talking tech since 2003

When I think back to the last vacation I took abroad, my mind immediately goes to that old to-do list of pre-trip arrangements that need to be met. I would look at it, and immediately feel overwhelmed. We all know the preparation pains that come with getting ready for a trip; for example, having to pack, and then deal with sitting on an overstuffed suitcase while trying to tightly zipper it shut. Afterwards, I repeatedly check that my passport is neatly placed and protected in a carry-on bag.

When traveling, it is necessary to research where and when to get the best exchange rate for the foreign dollars needed to spend on a trip overseas. The process is always the same; checking airport commission fees, then looking at the local bank’s personal rates, and finally, opting for a corner store money exchange when reaching the destination of choice. The truth is, though, that most tourists are easily overcharged when exchanging currency, and a lot of us come home with spare, unused cash we can’t use again.

One company, named CashDash, conducted a research survey that found 73% of overseas travelers don’t spend all of their exchanged currency, and end up taking it home to their native country. CashDash wants to eliminate this percentage of tourists bringing home unused currency, which is $78 of it, to be exact. The company also found that travelers exchange their cash about 2.2 times during one trip, so as it turns out, travelers aren’t saving as much money as they think they are when hunting for the best exchange rate and taking large sums out at once. Going home with $78 in unused currency is objectively a big waste of money.

CashDash is a mobile currency exchange platform for travelers and tourists that allows them to convert money within the UK, and offers several access points for them to retrieve their foreign currency without the use of a personal credit card or personal banking details. After downloading the app, the traveler purchases foreign currency through the platform at a fixed commission rate of 1%. CashDash then provides the traveler with a one-time pin number, and directs them to the nearest ATM to withdraw their money without additional fees. Be prepared for one small catch, though; travelers have to carve out  a bit of time to get to a CashDash-integrated ATM, since there are only a select few in most travel destinations.

Budgeting your travel money is still up to the traveler. Pulling the foreign currency out of an ATM is straightforward, but don’t expect the app to tell you when you’ve exceeded a spending limit. What you can trust about the platform, though, is that you’ll be safe from high credit card charges (because you’ll be avoiding them, entirely) and have the security of a flat, constant fixed commission rate. In the future, there may be an expansion of the CashDash mobile platform, creating more of these ATM access points in more than just the UK. For now, we’ll just have to enjoy the perks of CashDash the next time we’re in London, or maybe when  we finally get over to Dublin.

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