Refunds Whilst Travelling Abroad

I have recently been travelling to the USA and used my Monzo to pay for the hotel thinking this would save me money as I would be paying in dollars. The hotel used my Monzo to take various security deposits which would be refunded when I checked out. I understand that due to exchange rate fluctuations I may not get back exactly what I paid in sterling, but today’s Monzo screen was an eye-opener…

So, from a refund of $28.85, I get back 6 pence because my exchange rate was $480.83 to the pound.

I have initially been told by Monzo customer services that this will not change because the rate is set by MasterCard and that all I get back is 6p. I’ve asked for it to be escalated because I can’t believe I am being charged an exchange rate of £1=$480.83.

Has anybody else had a problem like this?

If this is the case, I’ll be asking to change some pounds into dollars at the same rate.


I’m (very) sure that the COp who said that missed what had happened & they’ll get this sorted for you. It looks like a bug.


I think that was wise


It looks to me like this is the exchange rate adjustment. Have you checked the original transaction to see if it’s showing a refund?

Sometimes, because of the way hotels handle refunds, you’re best looking at a statement to work our what’s happened.

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Why look at statement is app not same data as statement and statement same data as app?

if different why use app/monzo and just not use old bank as they send statements?

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A statement shows the finalised transactions, depending on how a refund issues a merchant, the auth code they use etc depends on how it shows in the app. Sometimes checking a statement provides a bit of clarity.

No, statement from hotel shows they refunded me $28.85 which means it must be that exchange rate. My Monzo statement shows it as a completed payment (not pending) of $28.85 refund being converted to £0.06.

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Where can I buy some USD at that rate… I’d be quids in (or dollars in :joy:)


Well, as you said you get a much more favourable rate with Monzo than with traditional banks. And many more benefits, such as push notifications, budget tools etc. etc.

Good job you didn’t wait two days to hear that…

I’ve had exactly the same problem on multiple occasions when travelling in the US with Monzo.

Customer services told me:

…it looks like the exchange rate is showing incorrectly because instead of comparing the total payment amounts (in this instance $102.87 vs £84.15), it’s comparing the total amount in USD ($102.87) vs the currency fluctuation (£0.38) which causes the exchange rate to look wildly inaccurate. If you compare the total amounts, the exchange rate looks much more reasonable: 1USD = 0.82GBP.

Explains what’s going on but doesn’t give any indication that this will be fixed in the future.


I have had the same situation before and I have spoken to a friend that works for Monzo that explained how this works:
This is only the adjustment for exchange rate fluctuations that occur when you are purchasing something over the weekend, after the weekend the rate is determined and you are charged or refunded the difference to the rate that was initially used (which I assume is that last available rate from the previous Friday at 23:59). This is shown in the app as a separate transaction and therefore the exchange rate is shown incorrectly, I believe this is a bug.

I have had a similar experience but instead of getting money back like in your case (the green 6p), I got charged a bit more (black 26p) than initially:

I hope this helps.


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Thanks very much…that explains it!

You’re not the only ones - think I have the worst rate ever:

I had this same issue. I know how FX transactions work, and that they require adjustments, but I think the calculated exchange rate is very misleading. Better not to show it at all, and instead add some explanatory text and a link to the original transaction.

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