Read this tip to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about International Travel and other Hotels topics.
BEFORE you leave the States, arrange with a large local bank to buy at least $100 worth of foreign money so that you land with some "cash" in hand. It may take a week's notice at your bank, so place an order for ..(pounds. Deutchmarks, yen, lira, etc.) as well as a supply of traveler's checks. Upon arrival at the foreign airport, go past the first bank of currency exchange windows, (where half your plane is in line)..there are more windows further into the airport with shorter lines.
AFTER your vacation, at the airport waiting to fly home, exchange your foreign money back to dollars. Unless you collect them, do the same with the coins. US banks will only accept bills for conversion.
(If I know I will be going back to that country again
I keep some currency...label an envelope at home with the country name, and keep it until next time.)