Cheaper foreign currency for Heathrow Rewards cardholders

Heathrow Rewards, the loyalty scheme for the shops at Heathrow Airport, has announced a new partnership with Travelex.

Heathrow Rewards members (joining is free) will receive a rate which is 0.5% better than the standard Travelex online rate.  This saves you £5 on a £1,000 transaction which, whilst not a fortune, is worth having.

You need to order via this link on the heathrow.com website.

Travelex

Remember that you will also receive 1 Heathrow Rewards point for every £10 you exchange, which can be converted into 1 Avios (albeit in multiples of 250).

A minimum of four hours notice is required for pre-ordered currency collections.

As I wrote back in August, you can no longer earn Avios with any currency pre-order at Terminal 5.  The American Express Currency Exchange branches were recently replaced by MoneycorpMoneycorp will ONLY award Avios if you order at the counter, and the rates are so dire that anyone who does so – assuming they are using their own money – should be locked up for their own safety.

For comparison, I checked Moneycorp vs the Heathrow Rewards / Travelex special rate.  For $1,000, Travelex wanted £631.51, but this reduced to £628.35 using the ‘Reward111’ promotional code.  Moneycorp wanted £628.14.  An order for Dh 5,000 of Dubai currency gave a similar result.

This promotion is therefore a decent deal, albeit that you are not making a major saving.  Both Moneycorp and Travelex presumably give Heathrow Rewards points as well.

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Comments

  1. I’m pretty sure I picked up pre-ordered currency from Travelex after security at T5 a couple of weeks ago.

    • Yes there are at least 3 after security in T5 as I visited all of them last week as only 1 of them deals with pre order collections.

  2. There is travelex after security in T5. It is near the escalators to T5B&C. It has not gone since the change to moneycorp, and is still listed on the travelex website for collections. Was there in November when I was last there.

  3. I’ve done some checks too as I’ll be needing forex shortly, and found that the Moneycorp rates were quite a bit better on $ and €, despite the 0.5% benefit at Travelex. Of course rates and offers from the various players change all the time, so might have been closer when you inspected. In my case the difference wasn’t small enough to warrant earning the handful of Avios, so I suggest everyone user the MSE forex calculator before ordering to see what works best for you. If you can collect in London, then rates are potentially better still.

  4. Using a fee free card in an overseas ATM that itself doesn’t charge is usually the cheapest way to get foreign cash. At the present rate US$1000 would cost around £610.

    Options include the Halifax Clarity credit card (you can minimise interest by paying off a cash advance when it hits your account, but even with a month’s interest it is still attractive) or Metrobank.

    Doesn’t get you any points of course, but that’s outweighed by the savings and particularly worthwhile if you travel on a regular basis.

    • Pszczolka says:

      I was going to post the same earlier this morning – this is what I have been doing for years. I have a Metro bank account that I just transfer some money into before I go away and it works great. I have the same from a US bank account. Not having to stress about whether I take out enough money or not and knowing I’m getting the best rate is great peace of mind!

      Plus, Metro Bank give you a £3 credit when you sign up :)

  5. One very good advantage to consider with moneycorp, as I found out yesterday flying from Heathrow, is that there is no need for a 4 hour wait. I was at T5 on Saturday, decided I needed some € for a couple of hours stopover in Berlin, went to moneycorp website, selected branch collection (Heathrow T5), printed confirmation and collected the money! They were also able to swipe my Heathrow Rewards card on the spot (so much better than the days with AMEX…I gave up on chasing Heathrow Rewards for one AMEX currency exchange earlier in the year).

    Lastly, when ordering online moneycorp does not require debit card information and the order ( at least at airport collection) is valid for 48 hours from collection date (you may place an order today for say tomorrow and if tomorrow the rate improves -> place a new order).

  6. JLev1986 says:
    • Yes, although Amex is getting tougher on authorising card transactions for foreign exchange or travellers cheques, especially for new cardholders, due to fraud issues. Bit of pot luck whether your card is accepted or not.

      • Jlev1986 says:

        No longer available at any Heathrow terminal! According to the guy on the Amex customer service line BAA did not renew the contract.

  7. I always use Travelex – and then also use their price promise…

    http://www.travelex.co.uk/uk/priceguarantee.aspx

    Best of both worlds I find…

  8. Has anyone else stumbled across Heathrow Rewards Premium Tier?

    “2 points per £1 spent in participating retailers, bars and restaurants, Heathrow Official Parking facilities and Heathrow Express online ticketing and 2 points per £10 exchanged at Bureaux de change. Points collected as detailed above are ‘standard’ points. Premium Tier earning continues indefinitely as long as you continue to transact and collect 500 or more standard points every year”.

    • This sounds like the higher rewards rate that the old Worldpoints system offered when you went above a certain rate.

    • They have always had this, it is not new. My wife ensures we requalify every year, sadly!

  9. I was about to buy $ & € via the BA-Amex site yesterday, and realised we could now collect money at Birmingham & Edinburgh only… I know there is no Amex at LHR T5, but I am sure the other terminals still have Amex Currency…

    I will switch to Travelex.