New site helps find best money changer rates
Mr Goh came up with website CashChanger to help travellers find the best rates at money changers
An avid traveller, Mr Gary Goh would go to different money changers here trying to get the best deals for currency rates.
That was what inspired him to create CashChanger, one of two local websites that informs people about the currency rates at different money changers in Singapore.
With Miss Evelyn Lee, 31, and Mr Kenneth Ocastro, 30, they created the product under Singapore Press Holdings Digital Division seven months ago.
Mr Goh, 29, told The New Paper: "I realised rates for certain places differ a lot, and buyer's remorse really stuck with me.
"I always thought about which money changers had the best rates."
To get updated rates, the team created a WhatsApp group chat where contributors can send photos of rate boards.
Mr Goh and his team then update the CashChanger website and indicate when rates have last been updated. There are more than 150 contributors and 70 money changers listed.
Users can search for the best rates or rates by area. There is also a rate board decryptor that helps users convert the value on the boards at money changers.
The website will also show if it is a good time to do an exchange, by comparing the prevailing rates for the last six months.
Users can join the group chat through a link on their Facebook page, and can also contribute via a live chat widget and e-mail.
"What makes us different from our competitors is that we deal with actual data contributed by people in the community, as opposed to estimates," Mr Goh said.
"When we first started, it was just about providing a need.
"We studied user habits by going out and asking people if they faced the same problem.
"It was just a lunch-time project that we wanted to see how far it would go."
But CashChanger and the community it built grew, garnering about a million page views a month. Mr Goh is exploring ways to expand it.
He said: "We're looking into attracting money changers to join us to bring more visibility.
"We're also hoping to handle transactions, so people can exchange their money via the website."
Madam Lilian Tan, 32, an executive officer, is a contributor on the WhatsApp group chat. When she passes money changers, she will take a photo of the board and share it.
She told TNP: "I contribute because it's helpful. When I call money changers to find out the rates, most do not want to disclose it over the phone.
"For people who travel often, the website and group chat is a convenient way to find out the rates at different places."