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exchanging euros to pounds
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# 1
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lola
Old 20-05-2005, 11:52 AM
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Question exchanging euros to pounds

I've inherited about 50,000 Euros but would like to exchange them for pounds as I live in UK. Does anyone know where I can get best rate for this amount?
Do you think it is better to keep Euros for now- is it possible to have a bank account with Euros in UK?
Also, what is the best way of transferring this money from the bank in Switzerland?
Thank you very much!
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# 2
Paul Varjak
Old 20-05-2005, 12:06 PM
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Welcome lola.

Sorry, I do not know the answer to your question. Hope someone can help.
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# 3
ManAtHome
Old 20-05-2005, 1:38 PM
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Tricky choice - several UK banks have offshore operations offering euro accounts (Citibank, Nationwide, HSBC, Barclays at least, probably more). Big problem is guessing where exchange rates are going as the best interest rates on a euro account are likely to be over 3% lower than sterling accounts. Advantage of having (some of) the cash in sterling is that you can bung some of it into tax-free/efficient accounts.

Haven't looked at how to quote previous threads yet (..awaits deluge), but if you search this site for 'currencies.co.uk' there is a discussion on converting pounds to euros which I suppose would work the other way round.

For interest, Interbank Pound to Euro exchange rate for today over last 4 years:
2002 - 1.586
2003 - 1.402
2004 - 1.484
2005 - 1.451
(numbers from http://www.oanda.com/convert/fxhistory )

As you can see, you could have broken even, lost money, or gained money depending on when you moved between sterling and euros... Current forecasts are for sterling to decline against the euro, but zillions of different forecasts about how much and when (ie most of them will be wrong).

Alternative option: take a gap year and blow it on Wine (France), Men (Spain/Italy), and Song (Greece)...
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# 4
Debt_Free_Chick
Old 20-05-2005, 4:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lola
Also, what is the best way of transferring this money from the bank in Switzerland?
Thank you very much!
You're sure you have Euros?

It's just that Switzerland is not in the EU so I would expect you to have Swiss Francs.
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# 5
climbgirl
Old 20-05-2005, 4:27 PM
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I use this site to send money between NZ and the UK - www.tranzfers.com They have consistently better rates than any bank (often making hundreds of pounds difference to the total) and their fees are a lot less. You transfer it between two bank accounts online.

If you go onto the site, it'll say they do transfers between NZ, OZ, Singapore and the UK. But my friend and I have both made transfers between Europe and the UK - just give them a call and they should sort it out for you.

If you want any more info, PM me!
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# 6
Savvy_Sue
Old 20-05-2005, 9:09 PM
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A Swiss bank account? Oh yes please!

(Sorry, that's not necessarily very helpful.)
I'm a Board Guide on the Cutting Tax; Charities; Small Biz & Charity Organisers; and Silver Savers boards, which means I'm a volunteer to help the boards run smoothly, and I can move and merge threads there. However, do remember, Board Guides don't read every post. If you spot an inappropriate or illegal post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com. It is not part of my role to deal with reportable posts.

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# 7
lola
Old 22-05-2005, 11:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Debt_Free_Chick
You're sure you have Euros?

It's just that Switzerland is not in the EU so I would expect you to have Swiss Francs.
yes it's euros but coming from the bank account in Switzerland.
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# 8
ManAtHome
Old 22-05-2005, 1:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ManAtHome
Alternative option: take a gap year and blow it on Wine (France), Men (Spain/Italy), and Song (Greece)...
Hope you all backed them...
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# 9
marksmoss
Old 13-11-2005, 2:17 PM
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My question is about exchanging Euro NOTES into GBP...

What is the best way for me to do this as I have about 10,000 Euro and therefore every commission percentage point is important. I am fully aware that the exchange rate fluctuates so I'd like an option where I can strike quickly while the rate is in my favour.

Thanks in advance,

Mark
Regards

Mark
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# 10
black-saturn
Old 13-11-2005, 6:15 PM
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The post office will exchange them for nothing. If it's a very large amount you will have to book. Then you can put them in your bank account.
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# 11
Cook_County
Old 13-11-2005, 6:28 PM
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Default Don't forget tax...

Are you domiciled within the UK for tax purposes; if not you should keep the money offshore.

If the money came from a trust set up by a non-UK domiciliary then the money could stay outside of the UK IHT net on your death.

The message here is don't forget to include UK tax planning in however you structure the money or you will give 40% to Gordon Brown at some point...

The currency is your choice, you can hold Swiss Francs, US dollars, GBPounds or whatever you like offshore but it could save you tax to keep it there...
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# 12
marksmoss
Old 15-11-2005, 7:51 PM
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Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cook_County
Are you domiciled within the UK for tax purposes; if not you should keep the money offshore.

If the money came from a trust set up by a non-UK domiciliary then the money could stay outside of the UK IHT net on your death.

The message here is don't forget to include UK tax planning in however you structure the money or you will give 40% to Gordon Brown at some point...

The currency is your choice, you can hold Swiss Francs, US dollars, GBPounds or whatever you like offshore but it could save you tax to keep it there...
Thanks for your responses so far. I work and have residence in Europe (outside the UK). I have earned nothing in the UK during this tax year and will soon be claiming back tax for the tax year before. I have earned this money in Europe, do I have to worry about paying UK tax just for exchanging it while I am on holiday visiting my family this Christmas?
Regards

Mark
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# 13
Benji
Old 15-11-2005, 9:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by black-saturn
The post office will exchange them for nothing. If it's a very large amount you will have to book. Then you can put them in your bank account.
Very true - and great for smallish amounts, but the exchange rate is usually comparativley poor so for a large amount you'd probably be better paying fees and getting a better exchange rate.
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# 14
Cook_County
Old 15-11-2005, 11:30 PM
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Default Once again tax...

Given that you are not UK resident (I assume) but expect to be so in the future (I assume) it makes no sense to have money onshore. It makes a great deal of sense of course to have money offshore.

You will of course have to investigate tax rules in the country where you live to see how they treat the foreign currency gain or loss as well as the local tax implications of holding funds offshore.
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# 15
marksmoss
Old 16-11-2005, 8:14 AM
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Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cook_County
Given that you are not UK resident (I assume) but expect to be so in the future (I assume) it makes no sense to have money onshore. It makes a great deal of sense of course to have money offshore.

You will of course have to investigate tax rules in the country where you live to see how they treat the foreign currency gain or loss as well as the local tax implications of holding funds offshore.
I live in Europe and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. I am just in the UK for Christmas to visit family. Are you saying that if I change a sizeable amout amount in cash at somewhere such as a travelex branch then it will trigger tax flags for people to chase me? I am talking about exchanging 3 or 4 thousand euro the first time and then another thousand euro when required. Is it really this complicated?

Is a travelex branch usually the best place given that I have cash to exchange for GBP cash?

Thanks for your time in responding to my questions
Regards

Mark
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# 16
gooismeid
Old 16-11-2005, 12:09 PM
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speaking from personal experience (UK national worked in EU for 8 years), the inland revenue told me that if I was domiciled and resident outside the uK, the only income it was interested in was any generated WITHIN THE UK (I had a house which I rented out). Anything else was up to the tax rules of the country in which I was registered as resident. You have something like a 90 day allowance to be in the UK in any given tax year before they start looking askance at your domicile/residency status. If you have no income which is generated within the UK, then I think even if you're changing several thousand euros this should not affect your position at all.

When transferring euros to pounds I found the most efficient and cheapest method was to load my giro account with euros (well, it worked in the Netherlands anyway!). The giro cashcard could be used to withdraw the money in the UK and it was free to withdraw the money - and at bank exchange rates too, which is a bonus. The only problem was the withdrawal limit of 1000 per day. This was a couple of years ago, mind you, so you may have to investigate whether giro accounts are available in your country of residence (usually from the post office), and what they charge for cash withdrawals abroad.
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