I always ask myself, when does someone start to claim that they’re a traveler? Is it after one trip, after six, after eleven? Anyways, I’ve been traveling since the semi-post-pubescent age of 16, which means that I’ve been boppin’ around the world for seven years now. This said, it wasn’t until yesterday when I realized that I’ve been getting scammed these last seven years…
Let me rewind a bit.
Outside of managing content for Shut Up and Go and traveling, I work at a cosmetics store. Yesterday, an acquaintance from high school came into the shop. Although I haven’t seen her in six years, it felt like I haven’t missed many of her experiences, thanks to social media.
What can I say? I’d rather keep up with her v. exciting time teaching English in Estonia rather than Keeping Up with the Kardashians.
Side note: teaching in Estonia sounds like total goals.
After a quick chat and helping her to pick out her items for the day, we went to the register where I rung her order out. I noticed that she had a super cool debit card that I’d never seen before.
Me: “Hey! What card is that? It looks pretty cool?”
Her: “Oh, it’s my TransferWise card! Since I work in Estonia, my job pays me in euros directly here, and I use it like a debit card. It’s borderless”
Me: “Oh. That’s pretty cool!”
Her: “Mhm! The best part is that I get the daily exchange rate for different currencies. Oh, and there are barely any ATM fees.”
I simply smiled. As she left the store, I began to think about all those times during my study abroad experience and my travels where my bank charged me $5 to withdraw money and the ATM charged me $3. Or all of those times when I used my card abroad and some random convenience fee would pop up. Like, excuse me – this fee is clearly an inconvenience to the card holder (me).
After logging onto the website to learn more, I saw that when you run out of money in a currency, they have an algorithm that picks the currency that has the most interesting conversion rate among the one you have in other balances to complete the money you’re lacking when you have to pay.
So like: If you have to pay 12 USD and you only have 10 USD in your USD account BUT you have money in your Canadian Dollar and Euros balances, TransferWise picks the most interesting one to convert to get the missing 2 USD.
As my 2020 travels are about to commence, I’m going to listen to my pal in Estonia and just try out this darn TransferWise card. With $10 fees hittin’ me left and right with my current card, there’s literally nothing I can lose by trying this new one out! If you travel often, I challenge you to try it out too!
Where are you all traveling this year?