Thomas Cook and Travelex have bureaux de change at check in, departures and arrivals. Thomas Cook has nine foreign exchange bureaux in the terminal, spread throughout departures and arrivals. They are all open between 4.30am and 10pm each day. Travelex have ten bureaux also spread throughout the terminal. Their opening times vary but generally they’re open from around 4 or 5am until the last flight departs. There are also ATMs in the terminal both before and after security.
There are a number of ways to get your travel money and it’s important to plan this carefully. Depending on the nature and length of your trip and where you’re going you might need cash, traveller’s cheques, a currency card, or all three. Using cash is easy and convenient and can help you monitor your spending, but if stolen it cannot be replaced so it’s not wise to rely on it alone. Most people will be able to use credit and debit cards abroad, and these can be a good backup, but like cash they can be stolen and are not easily replaced. It can be hard to find ATMs in some more remote locations too especially outside Europe.
Both traveller’s cheques and currency cards provide a more secure method of carrying money than cash. Currency cards are a relatively new development and work much the same way as debit cards, with foreign currency being pre-loaded on to them. They avoid the high fees that can be associated with using debit cards abroad. Traveller’s cheques are generally not necessary for short trips within Europe but anyone going on a longer trip outside of Europe should consider having an emergency fund in traveller’s cheques. They might be inconvenient to change but they’re reliable and replaceable.