Despite repeat advice on changing money, many still continue to use the Bureau de Change at an airport – which offer by far the worse rate possible, almost tantamount to robbery in my eyes. As an example I was at Alicante airport this morning, where there is exchange kiosk beside the rental car section as you exit the baggage reclaim area. On enquiring about today’s rate the response was £1 gets you €1 on “smaller amounts” without elaborating on what signified small!
The exchange rate in Benidorm is 1.155 today … at most places. My advice is go to the Indoor market and either use Tony’s or Sheilas – both small, honest independent and family run who are also only too happy to offer you advice on your stay here.
But be warned that there are also unscrupulous exchange places here too – the most notorious being one next to the Flash Hotel, another on the road opposite next to Dino’s and a third in the Old Town, opposite Dive Park, next to Milord’s.
The police have been called on numerous occasions after holidaymakers have handed over their £’s expecting a certain amount of euro’s and finding a big shortfall. Upon questioning the shortfall of the advertised rate they point to the very small print stating that the rate shown is for ridiculously large sums, which never happen. Technically they are not breaking the law so very little that the police can do, however, morally….
But as I said with airport exchanges, it was not just at Alicante. London Stanstead was not any better a few hours ago… they were offering 1.02€ to the pound. That is a difference, if exchanging £100 of €13.50 less – the cost of a very good meal here or nine, yes nine pints of larger. If that hasn’t taught you a valuable and important lesson then sorry, you deserve to be taken for a fool. Unless you literally booked the flight the night before there is really no excuse to use these devious outlets - remember most places are open 6 days a week here and another thing, when using your debit or credit cards always opt for euros if given the option otherwise you will be given a very bad exchange rate there too.