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Martin Lewis explains what to do if you're asked 'whether you want to pay in pounds' on holiday

Martin Lewis explains what to do if you're asked 'whether you want to pay in pounds' on holiday

The Money Saving Expert legend is back with some timely travel advice

Martin Lewis has issued important money saving advice when it comes to jetting off on your holidays. And it all comes down to when you're paying for the likes of a meal out or ice creams on the beach.

The Mancunian, who founded the Money Saving Expert (MSE) website back in 2003, has used his latest weekly MSE newsletter to focus on a whole range of travel tips ahead of what is expected to be another busy summer of people jetting off overseas to somewhere warm and sunny.

It comes after MSE team issued some advice a bit closer to home, with a two-week warning given to anyone who owns a Tesco Clubcard.

And back to the topic of travel advice, Lewis has recently explained exactly what you might be entitled to when it comes to flight compensation. If you've flown at any point in the last six years, you could be entitled to up to £520. Also, let's not forget his advice about cats.

Issuing his MSE newsletter last night (21 May), Lewis issued advice on 13 ways to 'slash the cost of spending abroad and save £100s'. Sounds decent enough to read on for us.

Martin's team is here again (ITV/GMB)
Martin's team is here again (ITV/GMB)

"What should you say when they ask - 'do you want to pay in pounds?'," Lewis' team writes.

"These days, buy most things abroad and the store will pressure you to pay in pounds (as will overseas ATMs), but is it the right thing to do?"

Well, what is the answer? It's a pretty short one and given in all caps, so the MSE team are pretty concrete on this one.

They say: "In short, the answer's NO. The main reason is if you say yes, the overseas bank does the conversion and the rates are poor.

"Yet say pay in 'local currency', and it's your card doing the conversion. And especially if you've a specialist card, that means the rate is near-perfect."

Paying with your cards abroad is far more common than it used to be (Getty Stock Images)
Paying with your cards abroad is far more common than it used to be (Getty Stock Images)

Basically, you're going to lose money if you choose our own currency. That's it.

To ensure you're not paying fees abroad too (roughly three per cent), which many high street banks attach to using your card overseas, you should invest in what Lewis' team says when it mentions a specialist card.

"Some top specialist overseas cards don't add [the charge], so you get that day's same near-perfect, bureau-de-change-beating exchange rates the bank does," they say.

Some overseas cards even give you 'better-than-perfect' rates as they come with cash back for signing up. Happy days.

Martin Lewis (ITV)
Martin Lewis (ITV)

Lewis says: "If you get a specialist overseas card, then there is no doubt that using it and paying in euros is always correct.

"Yet even without one of these, if you're using your plastic abroad, while there's a very minor gain with one bank for paying in pounds – it's negligible. Whereas get it wrong, and you can lose out a lot. So for safety and simplicity's sake, the golden rule is if using a card and you’re asked whether you want to pay in pounds or pay in local currency (eg, Euros) ALWAYS say the local currency (the same almost certainly applies US dollars when in the States or other currencies elsewhere too)."

Featured Image Credit: ITV / GMB / Getty Stock Images

Topics: Europe, Holiday, Martin Lewis, Money, Travel, UK News, World News