Ukash Urges Students Not To Lose Gap Year Savings At The ATM

One in five 18-24 year olds use ATMs to withdraw cash abroad – potentially seriously denting gap year budgets

Smart student travellers heading off on an adventure of a lifetime need to ensure that they manage their finances and avoid getting stung by credit or debit card charges. But research* by the Ukash Travel Money Prepaid MasterCard® has revealed that 18-24 year olds could be vulnerable to commissions, exchange fees and transaction charges swallowing up their travel money and severely denting their gap year budget – as well as putting their safety at risk.

70% admitted to exchanging pounds for foreign currency before heading abroad – the highest percentage of all age groups. Yet this means they may not be getting the best exchange rate. Plus carrying large amounts of cash is not a good idea for personal safety.

The Ukash research conducted in May found that over half of 18-24 year olds plan to visit Europe this year, and nearly 10% will be jetting off to the USA. But one in five admitted to withdrawing cash from their account at an ATM abroad which could eat into their hard earned savings. The same proportion also said they use debit cards abroad which brings the risk of high exchange rates being applied to transactions – the cause of horrible ‘bill-shock’ at the end of each month.

“Students need to make the most of the money that they have saved for their gap year” said Miranda McLean, Marketing Director, Ukash. “Yet our recent research suggests a real naivety when it comes to the best way to spend abroad.

“It seems incredible that students would save up their hard earned cash to be able to afford their gap year break, only to waste their money by accepting poor exchange rates, additional card charges and ATM fees. The Ukash Travel Money card is the simple and convenient way for students to make spending money go further, with the best exchange rates and free ATM withdrawals. And because it’s a prepaid card there is no credit check required or chance of getting into debt because only the funds on the card can be spent.”

The new Ukash Travel Money card offers the best possible foreign exchange rate on the market. There are no charges for sign up, transactions or ATM withdrawals abroad, which means that it definitively offers the best way to make holiday money go further in Europe and the USA.

It can be ordered online in minutes and will be delivered in 10 working days without the need for any credit checks. The card can be topped up online instantly using a debit card – even while travelling – and cardholders can check their balance and transactions and top up their card at any time online completely free of charge. Plus any money left on the card can be used for the next trip rather than worrying about often costly conversion back to sterling.

“Whether it’s one last fling before starting university or a long-planned gap year, students want to enjoy the opportunity to travel, without breaking the bank”, concludes Miranda McLean. “Cash may seem like the sensible option, but it poses a real security risk. The Ukash Travel Money card is a prepaid card, which helps students to budget, as well as offering them the best possible exchange rate. In addition, it’s PIN protected, reducing the risk of students having their cash swiped.”

The Ukash Travel Money MasterCard: The Facts

• Available in Euro and US Dollar
• Lowest FX Rate on the market
• No fees for transactions
• Free ATM withdrawals outside the UK
• No application fees
• Free balance enquiries online, at ATMs and SMS
• Free top up by debit card
• Chip and PIN security
• Can be used at over 34 million locations worldwide that accept MasterCard
• Minimum initial load value: £50
• Maximum single load: £2,000

*Populus poll conducted May 2014 – 2000 respondents