Australian money, Photo by Vagawi/Flickr Creative Commons
One scam that is happening more and more at Australian currency changers is done by the tellers themselves. This Australian currency scam is even happening at some of the reputable banks in Australia which is quite scary. When the teller gives the person their change, they are often keeping a hundred dollars for themselves.
When most people are getting a lot of money changed, it is confusing enough and they don’t notice that they didn’t get all of their money. While this has happened to many people in Australia, it actually happens a lot in other countries as well. Always count your money and look at the written amount to make sure they match up. Do this before you leave the counter.
Scams considering the currency market are not limited solely to the domain of currency exchange offices and bank’s travelers services. In a press release from 2014 issued by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission, which is the regulator of all financial services provided in Australia, it was said that some Foreign Exchange (Forex) companies targeting both businesses and retail clients are fraudulently claiming to be approved by them, and are not safe to use.
Any firm which is not properly regulated can pose a great hazard to clients using it. Financial regulators like ASIC verify that each companies have separate accounts to handle clients money, which will ensure the financial firmness of the company or bank will not impact its clients deposits, and they would always be able to receive back their money, even if the firm collapses. ASIC and other regulatory bodies also make sure that companies that offer Forex options for speculative trading are not rigged – similarly to regulatory bodies like ACT (Gambling and Racing Commission in Australia) inspect casinos to make sure gaming is fair.
You can always look through this list of regulated money transfer services in Australia to make sure you are dealing with a safe company.
Also, for a better exchange rate, ATM machines are usually the safest way to bet that you get the money that you are supposed to. They are usually found in every airport, so you can even get money before you get in your taxi. I also love to print out an fxCheatSheet just before traveling to put in my wallet, so I can look at it and automatically know the cost of things while I’m still learning the exchange rate.