I am travelling to Thailand soon and want to know is it best to exchange Australian dollars to Thai Baht in Australia or wait till I get to Thailand. I'm travelling as a couple with my girlfriend, we are both 19 years old and are wanting suggestions of recommended tours and sight seeing. We are staying near Phuket.
There's no way to avoid all commissions and fees, some methods are better than others. When I travel to SE Asia I simply use the local ATMs. They dispense local currency (of course) there's usually one of them in the pre-immigration area of the airport arrivals hall.
ATMs actually use the best/most favourable exchange rate... the inter-bank rate. Money changers may use a higher rate than that (which is how they can offer "commission free" exchanges). Of course there's always a fee for using a foreign ATM, but I find it's less than the currency exchange fees. Just set up an account that doesn't have your life savings in it, in case you get targeted by cyber criminals.
Phil at the safety hub almost 5 years ago