To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what plans he has to control exchange rate indications by bureaux de change.
For too long the incomplete and obscure way some signs setting out exchange rate indications are displayed has led to confusion. Regulations I have laid before the House today will enable consumers to compare rates more easily and shop around for the best deal.The Price Indications (Bureaux de Change) Regulations 1992 mean that exchange rate indications must: give full details of the terms on which transactions will be conducted. Where an operator buys and sells a currency at different rates, or buys and sells travellers cheques at different rates from notes, all rates will have to be given; give full information on commission rates and any other fees, giving them the same degree of prominence as the exchange rates themselves; be easily visible to customers as they approach the premises.In addition, customers must be given: all information relevant to a particular transaction when they enquire about an exchange rate; receipts setting out details of the transaction, except in the case of some machines; a clear explanation of the basis on which the rate will be determined when currency is ordered for supply at a later date.Bureaux de change must comply with these regulations which come into force on 18 May 1992.However, requirements to display the information on fees and commission rates with the same degree of prominence as the exchange rates themselves will take effect on 18 May 1993. This is to allow operators time to modify or replace display equipment.