5 Best places to exchange currency in Windsor - 2023
Whether you’re just arriving in Windsor from abroad, or a Canadian about to hop on a plane to head on an overseas trip, you might need easy, cheap ways to exchange currency to or from CAD.
This guide covers some top Windsor currency exchange services, including where to find them and how to get in touch - plus we’ve thrown in some extra tips on smart ways to find the best deals on currency exchange, at home or abroad.
Things to consider before exchanging money in Windsor
Here are a few things to think about before you buy foreign currency for your trip.
Get a travel money card to cut costs
Prepaid travel money cards let you make contactless payments and withdrawals - and often let you hold a balance in foreign currencies so you can exchange in advance and lock in the exchange rate.
Different prepaid travel cards work in their own way, but usually you can get one before you leave and add money with your debit card or a bank transfer. You can then either convert in advance or at the point of payment, depending on the card you select - the Wise card, or the Cash Passport from Canada Post are both good options to consider.
Wise offers a digital account to hold and exchange 40+ currencies. All you need to do is add money in one of the 20 or so supported currencies for top ups, and you can then spend and make withdrawals conveniently with mid-market rates and low fees.
Canada Post’s Cash Passport supports 7 currencies and is a good last minute option as you can walk in and get one at a Canada Post office conveniently. Some fees apply and exchange rates may include a markup.
Here’s a quick overview of some of the pros and cons of Wise vs the Cash Passport, to give you an idea of which may work for you.
✅ Free to open an account
✅ Hold 40+ currencies
✅ Use your Wise card in 150+ countries
✅ No fee to spend currencies you hold
✅ Mid-market rate currency conversion with low fees from 0.43%
❌ Some transaction fees apply
❌ Some ATM fees apply once your monthly free withdrawal allowance is exhausted
❌ No branch network
✅ Convenient to collect in a Post Office branch
✅ No fee to spend currencies you hold
✅ Secure way to spend and make withdrawals
✅ 24/7 emergency support
✅ Extra Mastercard perks and travel benefits available
❌ 15 CAD fee to get a card
❌ 3.25% fee if you spend an unsupported currency, or if you don’t have enough of a supported currency in your wallet
❌ Limited range of only 7 supported currencies
❌ Exchange rates include a markup
Avoid airport currency exchanges
Don’t leave it to the last minute to set up your foreign currency if you’re planning on taking cash with you. Windsor international airport doesn’t advertise any foreign exchange options, and doesn’t have any ATMs - so you won’t be able to rely on changing your cash here, or on getting CAD from an ATM to exchange later.
That said, airport currency exchange services are usually best avoided anyway, as they often have pretty high overall costs. Instead, if you’ll need cash right away when you get to your destination, you can just make an ATM withdrawal on arrival - it’s convenient, and you should get a fair exchange rate that’s been set by your card.
Look at your card fee schedule to see if any international ATM costs apply, and consider getting a travel prepaid card from a service like Wise to use when abroad instead of your bank card. The Wise card has some fee-free international ATM withdrawals every month, and uses the mid-market rate with low fees for currency conversion. More on that later.
Check the mid-market rate
No matter where you plan on exchanging your money, you’ll need to check the exchange rate that’s used. It’s common to find extra fees added into exchange rates which mean you’re paying more than you think for your travel money.
Compare the rate you’re offered against the mid-market exchange rate for the currency you need. You can get the mid-market rate for your currency pair on Google or with a currency conversion app. This rate doesn’t have any extra fees added in, and so is a good benchmark to measure by. Looking out for providers which offer the mid market rate, or as close as possible to it for your currency will usually mean you get the best available deal.
Beware of ATM rates
If you’re using ATMs overseas to get your foreign currency in cash, look out for dynamic currency conversion (DCC).
You might not have heard of DCC but that doesn’t mean you’ve not seen it in action. It’s where you’re asked at an ATM if you’d rather pay for your withdrawal in your home currency instead of the local currency where you are.
If you agree, the ATM operator sets the exchange rate used to convert one currency to the other - and can throw in some extra fees too. That means that it’s usually more expensive compared to paying in the local currency. If you’re asked if you want to pay in your home currency just say no, to avoid the extra costs associated with DCC.
Best place to exchange currency in Windsor?
The best place to exchange currency in Windsor will depend on where you are and which currency you need. Call ahead if you’re looking for a more exotic currency, or a higher value amount, to make sure the branch has what you need.
Below we’ve picked out a few of the top rated travel money options in Windsor - the table shows their contact information and Google rating, to help you get in touch and check their rates for the currency you need.
|Name||Address||Phone number||Google Rating|
|Babylon Monetary Services||793 Wyandotte St E, Windsor, ON, N9A 3J5||+1 519 968 3558||4.9|
|Money Mart||1584 Huron Church Rd, Windsor, ON, N9C 2L1||+1 519 256 2274||4.9|
|Windsor Station Currency Exchange||298 Walker Rd, Windsor, ON, N8Y 2M9||+1 519 258 7994||4.8|
|Continental Currency||3100 Howard Ave, Windsor, ON, N8X 3Y8||+1 519 250 1007||4.8|
|CanAm Currency Exchange||3234 Dougall Ave, Windsor, ON, N9E 1S6||+1 519 915 5151||4.8|
|Money Mart||200 Wyandotte St E, Windsor, ON, N9A 3H4||+1 519 252 1131||4.7|
- Correct at time of writing, 27 September 2023
### How we rated the best places to exchange money
Windsor does have quite a few physical currency exchange stores, but most don’t publish their exchange rates online which means you’ll need to get in touch to check which works best for you. We’ve picked out the options above based on the top rated exchange stores from Google, as a starting point.
As ratings are dynamic, and service reliability can change over time, you’ll want to double check what’s best for your specific needs before you head out to get your travel money.
Factors to consider when choosing an exchange provider in Windsor
Make sure you’re using a reputable service when exchanging money. Google ratings are a good place to start - Yelp can also be handy, or you can take recommendations from friends if you’d prefer.
It’s common to find that the fees and exchange rates offered for different currencies aren’t available online, so you’ll need to call individual stores to see what their live rates are for the currency you need. Bear in mind that when a currency exchange service states it offers fee free, or zero commission currency exchange, it often just means that it has added its fees into the exchange rates offered. That’s not transparent and can make it harder to work out what you’re really paying for your foreign currency.
Save time on research by picking a provider which always uses mid-market rate currency conversion with low, transparent fees, like Wise.
Tips for finding the best currency exchange rates in Windsor
Before we finish up, here are a few more handy tips for exchanging foreign currency in Windsor, or once you’ve reached your destination:
Ordering a travel card from a provider like Wise or Canada Post could save you money and save time later
Windsor currency exchange stores often don’t publish live exchange rates online - call ahead to make sure the one you choose has a good deal for your currency
Look for a provider offering the mid-market rate for your currency - or as close as possible to it
You’re unlikely to be able to change your currency at Windsor airport on departure - make an ATM withdrawal on arrival at your destination instead if you need cash instantly
Use the Exiap currency conversion tools to stay updated on current exchange rates
Where to get foreign currency outside Canada
If you’ve arrived at Windsor airport with no foreign currency on you, you’ve probably got a couple of options: use your card in an ATM once you arrive in your destination, or exchange any CAD you have with you in a physical exchange office wherever you’re headed.
Using an ATM can be cheap and secure as long as you avoid DCC, and if your card has low or no international ATM fees. Or, if you’re carrying CAD with you there’s also the option to just visit a currency exchange store on arrival. Shop around if you’re planning on doing this so you get the best available deal.
An alternative which offers convenience and low overall costs is to get a travel money card from a service like Wise card, or the Cash Passport from Canada Post. You won’t need to get your travel money sorted out before you go, and you can often access competitive exchange rates and low overall costs.
How do I exchange currency after a trip?
If you have left over travel money you can usually sell it back to a currency exchange service when you get home - but there may be costs involved.
Money Mart, which is one of the services we’ve highlighted above, offers the option to pay a small fee when you buy USD or EUR, to then be able to sell back your money at the same rate you bought it if you have any left after your trip. If you use a different currency exchange store, or if you don’t want to pay this fee, bear in mind that rates may have changed between you buying and selling your foreign currency - which can mean you get back less than you originally spent.
Prepaid travel cards like the Wise card or Canada Post Cash Passport can be a good alternative, as you can add money conveniently, and top up if you run out while you’re away if you want. And with Wise there’s no need to convert all your funds to foreign currency in advance as the card can convert for you with the best available fees and the mid-market exchange rate.
FAQs - best places to exchange currency in Windsor
What is the cheapest way to get foreign currency in Windsor?
Each currency exchange service will have its own rates and fees, which may vary widely. The only way to find the cheapest for your particular currency is to compare a few by calling, or to use the tools and reviews on Exiap, to narrow down your search.
Should I exchange money before I travel?
You can exchange your money before you travel, but depending on the service you use, you won’t always get the very best rates. It’s worth knowing that you don’t necessarily have to exchange before you leave. You could get a multi-currency account and card from Wise, or a Canada Post Cash Passport instead. Both are convenient for spending and withdrawals overseas.
Does it matter where you exchange currency?
Yes. Currency exchange services set their own rates and fees - so which one you pick can make a huge difference to how much you have to spend on your trip. It’s worth investing some time in researching the best options for your needs, including exchanging cash and using a specialist travel money card instead.