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The United Arab Emirates has become a top three destination for UK travellers this year, followed by South Africa based on currency orders in Q1 2015 from leading travel money provider ICE - International Currency Exchange.

Reflecting the upward trend in bookings to Dubai¹ reported by travel agents, The UAE Dirham has jumped up three places compared to Q1 2014 to be the third most popular currency ordered. The South African Rand moves up to 4th place, possibly helped by the current strength of the Pound against the Rand – now offering 17 Rand to the Pound² compared to 12 Rand³ in 2012.

Surprisingly, the Turkish Lira, formerly a top three currency is now at 6th place having been usurped by the UAE Dirham, and the Thai Baht is now bottom of the table indicating changing preferences amongst UK travellers for long haul sun destinations.

The Euro and US Dollar historically make up the top two most popular currency orders and that trend remains as the strength of the Pound against the Euro over the last few months


² screen shot attached.

has peaked at a seven year high. In Q1 2015, ICE saw orders for Euros rise 108.5% on the same period in 2014.

“Our analysis shows a distinct shift in destinations in and out of favour in the first Quarter of the year” said Koko Sarkari, COO of ICE. “Wherever, the destination, getting a good deal on currency should be a top priority for travellers and by combining a number of options from pre-ordered travel money cash, loading currency onto prepaid cards, or using a credit card that’s free of overseas charges, travellers can take advantage of convenient payment options and competitive rates of exchange”.

“When considering a prepaid currency card, it’s worth looking out for added extras, for example. The ICE Travellers Cashcard is the only prepaid currency card to offer a 1.5 % cashback on qualifying purchases⁴. It also comes with a free back up card so that if the first is lost or stolen, the second can be activated for use with little disruption to the holiday”, concludes Koko.


April 2015

Top ten currencies based on total order amounts, Quarter 1, 2014 and Quarter 1 2015.
All quoted rates obtained from

For further press information please contact the ICE Press Office at HSL – Parm Heer, Laura Welsh or Alison Reeson on 020 8977 9132.

Notes to editors:

International Currency Exchange (ICE) has been providing retail foreign exchange for over 40 years and today has over 400 locations in 20 countries, on four continents, conducting one transaction every six seconds. Through its retail network, ICE offers a wide range of products and services to support the travelling public’s requirements, including foreign currency and phonecards.

ICE’s online products include commission free secure next day home delivery currency and the ICE Travellers cashcard, an innovative prepaid MasterCard® in £, € or US$, which can be loaded with holiday spending money before travelling, allowing all the convenience of using a bank debit or credit card, but without the risks and charges sometimes associated.


⁴ on all purchases of £50/$50/€50

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