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How do I Choose the Best Online Currency Converter?

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  • Written By: G. Melanson
  • Edited By: Kristen Osborne
  • Last Modified Date: 18 August 2016
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    Conjecture Corporation
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Whether you’re shopping online, converting vacation funds to a foreign currency, or simply doing research, you can detect a quality online currency converter by researching its features. The best currency converters are ones that are updated daily, allow you to convert to and from a wide range of different currencies, and include extra features like as archived exchange rates. To narrow down your choices of online currency converters, you can begin by selecting one that’s made available by a major financial institution in your own country. Many major banks offer free currency converters on their websites that cater to the official currency and language of their country of origin.

You should always choose an online currency converter that clearly indicates that it’s updated on a daily basis. The converter should confirm the current day’s date in bold text and also indicate when it’s updated during the day. An online currency converter should also allow you the option of converting an amount from and to as many as 50 foreign currencies. A quality online currency converter will recognize global currencies and allow you to convert any amount, including change, to another currency.

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If you need to convert past earnings for income tax purposes or research global markets, the archive functions of an online currency converter could prove especially helpful. The best archive options for online currency conversion will allow you to see daily conversion rates for up to 10 years in the past. For added comparability, they may also feature such tools as monthly average rates, annual average rates, and graphs to illustrate the data at-a-glance.

A comprehensive online currency converter should also allow you the ability to convert currencies using both the nominal rate and the cash rate. Nominal exchange rates allow you to see a bank estimate of where the market was on a given day, and will typically vary, depending on which financial institution the online currency converter is hosted by. The cash rate conversion takes into account the fee that most major financial institutions will charge for cash conversion, which is usually about 4% of the total amount for major currencies. Though helpful as a reference point, the cash rate conversion of an online currency converter is not exact, as the amount also depends on whether the transaction involves converting check, cash, or credit card.

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