Prepaid currency card provider FAIRFX partnered with us to build their brand profile in the competitive prepaid currency card and online travel money space.
Working together to craft media stories that would grab national headlines and chunky pieces of coverage, we discovered that consumers were being ripped off in all sorts of ways. For example, those who chose to exchange their money at the airport would pay in excess of 15% more than if they had bought it online, leaving travellers £150 out of pocket for every £1,000 changed into Euros. But airport travel desks aren’t the only businesses waiting to rip off happy and unsuspecting holidaymakers.
BrandContent discovered that the Post Office was charging different exchange rates in different Post Office branches all over London, meaning the branch you chose to visit would dictate the exchange rate you received. Something seemed a little off, we thought, so we carried out an investigation on behalf of FAIRFX to find out if the Post Office were employing a UK-wide exchange rate postcode lottery.
After gaining interest from the finance editor at the Press Association, BrandContent launched the undercover investigation aiming to expose the foul play with 24 hours, so the story could run the next evening.
With an imminent deadline, BrandContent arranged for 20 secret shoppers in cities up and down the UK to:
The evidence soon proved that customers were being subjected to a postcode lottery when shopping for travel money with the Post Office. Pontypridd in Wales was one of the worst areas, where you’d pay a shocking 47 euros more on 500 euros exchanged than other parts of the country.
BrandContent secured in excess of 125 pieces of media coverage across the UK, including the news sections of The Telegraph, Daily Mail, BBC to name but a few reaching 4.5 million people with FAIRFX’s message in 48 hours and making consumers aware of the trap to avoid.