While the basics of foreign currency exchange tend to stay the same day after day, year after year, every now and then something changes. And that something might affect you. It might affect your travel money and your holiday!

So every couple of months, we'll give you a snapshot of any changes in the world of foreign currency - from political impacts to new banknotes. And, if any of the changes have an impact on you and your travel money, our Travel Money FXperts will gladly help you with further information you may need! Our stores are open 7 days a week, click here to find your nearest store.

 

#1. NEW AUSSIE BANKNOTES

Thousands of Kiwis cross the ditch every year to visit Australia, so changes to the Aussie dollar will affect a lot of us. If you have crossed the ditch recently, you may have noticed their new $5 banknote floating about - it was issued in September 2016, so it's had a few months to get out into Aussie shops and wallets. Well, on 17 February 2017, the new design for the $10 banknote was released by the Reserve Bank of Australia, and this new note will be in circulation from September 2017. The good news for us is that the existing series of banknotes can still be used because they are still legal tender, so if you have any leftover from a previous trip, you can still use them when you next visit Australia.

 

#2. 'BREXIT' IMPACTING THE BRITISH POUND

Theresa May, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, has announced that she will trigger Article 50 on 29 March 2017. Huh? What does that mean?

Article 50 of the Treaty of Lisbon outlines the rules of exit from the EU, which is what 'BREXIT' is all about. Triggering Article 50 means that the two years of negotiations required for the UK to exit the EU will begin. And, it will also mark the beginning of uncertain times for the UK and the EU - no one has ever left the EU before, so who knows how this will work out?

Well, what we do know is that economic and political uncertainty is often reflected in the value of that country's currency, and this was no exception. When the PM made the announcement that she was going to trigger Article 50 soon (she hadn't even set a date at this stage), the British Pound (GBP) hit a 2-month low against the US dollar, the Euro and the Swiss Franc. 

What does this mean for the New Zealand dollar and its value against the GBP? If the GBP continues to fall in value, this could be good news for anyone needing to buy Pounds. As you can see from the below historical chart, the NZD:GBP exchange has been on the rise over the last few months*. But we don't yet know how the NZD to GBP exchange will continue to be affected, so watch this space as the BREXIT negotiations take place!

 

#3. INDIAN RUPEE BEING ACCEPTED AT TRAVEL MONEY NZ AGAIN

In November 2016, the Reserve Bank of India placed some restrictions on the trade of the Indian Rupee (INR) as they demonetised the 500 and 1,000 INR bank notes. This has had quite an impact on many of our customers, but we are pleased to let you know that Travel Money NZ has recommenced trade in the Rupee and can now accept valid tender INR banknotes, with some restrictions. 

So, if a customer brings us a valid 50, 100 or 2,000 INR note, we will be able to exchange them with no restrictions. We are unfortunately still unable to accept the notes which were demonetised, but we can accept all other valid INR notes.

Summary of what INR notes can be sold at Travel Money NZ:

 

#4. NEW 12-SIDED £1 COIN

At the end of March 2017, the UK will have a new £1 in circulation. The Royal Mint is set to produce 1.5 billion of the new coins, at a rate of up to 2,000 each minute, and total of 3 million every day!

The new 12-sided coin will boast fancy new high-tech security features, including a hologram, and it is made of two metals. The design reflects England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, with a rose, a leek, a thistle and shamrock included.

So, if you're visiting the UK soon and have a few of the current £1 coins lying around, here are a few things you should know:

  • The new coin will be accepted in shops alongside the current coin for a while
  • But, the current round pound will be phased out of us, so be sure to spend them while you can!
  • You will have until 15 October 2017 to spend your coins or bank them.

 

#5. NEVER MISS A GREAT RATE

Trying to keep on top of currency rate changes in the lead up to your holiday?

We know its time consuming, and well, we all have better things to do with our time don't we?

Why not let the FXperts keep on top of it for you? With our new Currency Alert tool, all you need to do is set up an alert for the currency you need and your desired rate - once it hits that rate, we'll send you an email to let you know. You can set up alerts for any of our 60+ foreign currencies, sent directly to your inbox daily or weekly. So, if you miss the morning news or don't have time to check the rate that day, you won't miss out on a great rate! You can then buy your foreign currency online, directly from your email!

Ready to set up your Currency Alert? Click here to get started

So that's a wrap for this foreign currency snapshot. But, if you have anything you would like to know or have questions about other changes in the foreign currency world, just let us know!

 

*1 year historical exchange rate data available on www.xe.com, as of 28 March 2017.

This blog is provided for information only and does not take into consideration your objectives, financial situation or needs.  You should consider whether the information and suggestions contained in any blog entry are appropriate for you, having regard to your own objectives, financial situation and needs.  While we take reasonable care in providing the blog, we give no warranties or representations that it is complete or accurate, or is appropriate for you.  We are not liable for any loss caused, whether due to negligence or otherwise, arising from use of, or reliance on, the information and/or suggestions contained in this blog.

Janelle Strickland

Janelle has 6 years of experience working in the travel industry as a digital marketer, with the last two specialising in Travel Money. Coming from a background of Journalism and English, Janelle enjoys writing copy for blogs, websites and social media, and has written guest posts for both Cruiseabout and Travel Money NZ.