Euro Sterling Exchange Rate News

Sterling Euro Exchange Rate Today : January 18th 2019 8.45 am

1 GBP = 1.1363 EUR

1 EUR =  0.878 GBP

 

As expected we are seeing volatility in exchange rates as the UK Parliament resumes the Brexit deal debate.  After the “May”  deal was rejected  – the pound initially dropped but quickly recovered on the realisation that the chances of the UK crashing out of the EU with no deal at all at the end of March have receded. The UK Government winning the vote of no confidence was also positive for sterling.

According to a recent Bank of England Brexit analysis,  if the UK goes through a “disorderly” Brexit , Sterling could fall by 25% under a worst-case scenario.  This could see the Pound  fall to parity against the Euro.

See Today’s  Exchange Rates Here


With so much  uncertainty in the currency markets at the moment –  it could get quite stressful for people or businesses planning large Euro / Sterling exchanges in the next few months.   We are in a period of high volatility which, depending on your timescales and budget, could cause problems if you are not properly prepared.

Using a Currency Exchange specialist  can remove some of the uncertainty by allowing you to fix an exchange rate as much as 12 months in advance of your transfer.  For good deals on currency exchange for large amounts –  for personal money or for businesses – see our page on how to get the Best Exchange Rates

 

money transfers

You might also be interested in this information about  Transferring  Money between Ireland and the UK

If you are just looking to buy some Pounds for a holiday  – take a look at our page about the best place to buy Sterling in Ireland

 

Buying a Car in the UK – Best Way to Pay

There can be some big savings to be made by buying a used car from the UK and bringing it over to Ireland .

When the Sterling/ Euro exchange rate favours the Euro – it can end up being a lot cheaper for Irish residents when buying a car in the UK.  Since the vote for Brexit – the value of the Pound has fallen quite a lot   – making used UK car purchases even better value.

But – a no deal Brexit will result in VAT being charged on UK used car imports – which will increase prices by 23%. Customs duty will also apply  (around 10%) . So – if you are thinking of buying a car in the UK – you might want to do it before the end of March.

See more about the  latest Euro Sterling Exchange Rate Here

Buying a used car from the UK and importing it into Ireland can sometimes save buyers several thousand Euros – even after you factor in the expenses of travel , VRT etc.  If you are looking at buying in the more expensive end of the market – then you will definitely save money by importing  from the UK.
The number of used (imported) private cars licensed in Ireland rose by 7.5% to 99,456 in 2018 compared with 92,508 in 2017.


Paying for a car in the UK  in Sterling – what are the options?

Your Own Bank : If you just ask your own bank to do the currency conversion and send the money to the car dealer  – you will probably not get the best exchange rate.
The majority of the major banks will typically make between 2% and 4% margin on the exchange rates they use .  Getting a better deal on the EUR/GBP exchange rate could easily save you enough money to tax your imported car for a year.  For example on a £15,000 car purchase  – a difference of just 2% on the exchange rate would save you £300 . (Probably enough to pay for the car on ferry back to Ireland.)
Below – we have listed some of the other options for paying for a car in the UK


Other Ways of Paying for a car from the UK

Fexco  is based in Ireland and is a multinational financial and business solutions provider, with operations in 29 countries worldwidefexco . They can offer car buyers more competitive exchange rates than the main banks .  You can quickly  request a quote online on their dedicated page for UK car imports . Once a figure has been agreed – you just transfer the Euro amount to Fexco and the seller will receive the Sterling into their account. (Same day if necessary)
Fexco have been around since 1981 and are regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland, and by the Financial Conduct Authority for the conduct of payment business in the UK.


TransferMate  is an Irish currency exchange company with plenty of experience in dealing with UK car purchases by Irish drivers and also businesses such as car dealers . Once you have set up an account with Transfermate you can just contact them to confirm the amount in sterling you have to pay and who to pay it too . Transfermate give you a rate and tell you how much you will need to pay in Euros. Once you transfer your Euros to their client account in Ireland the car dealer in the UK can be  be sent the Sterling on the same day – usually in a couple of hours . You can also reserve an exchange rate for a small refundable deposit and do the transfer when you are ready to buy.


You could choose to use a fully online exchange marketplace such as Currency Fair.
They are  an Irish based company and are are regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland.  You can pay in your Euros to CurrencyFair with an Irish debit card or by bank transfer. Many other exchange firms won’t accept debit cards.   You can check their current live exchange rates below.


FairFx are London based foreign exchange specialists – and they also have an office in Dublin . You can arrange international money transfers for UK car purchases with FairFx  online or over the telephone.  They deal with personal customers as well as businesses such as car dealers .  You can call FairFx on their Irish number 01  5665546 or on their UK number (0044) 20 7858200 . Ask for Niall – and he will make sure you are looked after.


 

What are the other options?

Paying with a Debit Card –  There are daily spending limits on almost all Irish debit cards  – so this method may not be a viable option for manyUK car purchases. Also , some sellers might have limits on how much they will accept by debit card.

Irish Debit Card Daily Limits are …

  • EBS: €2,000 ;
  • PTSB: €2,500 ;
  • KBC: €2,500 ;
  • N26: €5000 ;
  • AIB: €7,100 ( €5,000 max per transaction) .
  • BOI is the only one without a daily limit.

There will usually be a small “non euro” transaction charge from your bank for using a debit card to buy in Sterling – but it won’t be more than €11.43 whatever you spend.
The exchange rate used will be the Visa or Mastercard Rate (which you still might be able to beat by using one of the currency exchange specialists mentioned above.)

If you get a debit card from a new online bank called N26 –  they don’t apply any extra charges when making purchases in non Euro currencies. N26 is an “online only” bank , based in Germany and licensed by the European Central Bank  See N26 Bank Account.


Bank Draft –   not really a viable option. This involves getting your Irish bank to convert your Euros to Sterling and write a banker’s draft in Sterling payable to the car seller. Many UK dealers won’t take a bank drafts because of forgery problems. Also – the exchange rate you get from your bank is likely to be a lot worse than the other options above and there are usually extra fees


Cash:  Paying in cash is not really a viable option either. On larger value purchases most reputable car dealers won’t take cash . Even if they do – you probably won’t get the best exchange rate on cash and there’s also the worry of theft or loss of the cash.


Credit Card – using your Irish credit card to pay for a car in Sterling (assuming your credit limit is big enough) is not really a good option. The exchange rate might be fOK – but the credit card company will charge between 1.75% and 2.25% on a foreign currency transaction. Based on an average of 2% – this would mean a charge of about €500 on a £20,000 purchase.


Other Costs to Consider when importing a car from the UK.

VAT:  For VAT purposes – cars are considered not to be second hand  if less than 6 months has passed since the date of first registration or there is mileage of less than 6000 km.
Secon Hand Cars are usually sold by dealers  inclusive of UK VAT  .  The sale  not liable to VAT if the seller is a private person.
Second hand cars sold by a UK dealer to a dealer in Ireland  can qualify for zero VAT if

  • the seller has the buyer’s  VAT number and displays it on the  invoice, and
  •  there are commercial documents showing evidence of the car leaving the UK.

Buyers in Irleland currently don’t have to pay Irish VAT  on a second hand imported car from the UK. (Things willchange after a no deal Brexit though – VAT will probably be charged in full at the time of import.)

New cars exported from the UK to Ireland cars are currently  sold without UK VAT. But Irish VAT is due on it when you import it.
A car is considered new if no more than 6 months have passed since the date on which it was first registered or if its mileage does not exceed 6000 km.


VRT:- Before you purchase any vehicle in the UK, ensure that you  use the  Revenue VRT Calculator in order to find the potential VRT charges that you will have to pay here when registering the vehicle here.
The VRT  due  is based on a percantage of the car’s ” Open Market Selling Price” (OMSP) as determined by the Revenue Commissioners.  This percentage varies, depending on the car’s CO2 emissions.  (VRT Rates Here)   Lower emissions means lower VRT. The lowest rate is 14% – rising to 34% for high CO2 emissions

 

Cheapest Electricity Provider

Many thousands of people in Ireland have never switched electricity provider  – (about 36% of households) . By switching to the cheapest electricty provider, these households could save ,on average ,€220  in just 12 months on electricity bills.

Electric Ireland  (formerly ESB)  used to be the only domestic Electricity Provider  in Ireland – but since deregulation in 2011 , thousands of households have switched to other suppliers such as  SSE Airtricity , Energia or Bord Gais Energy  in order to get cheaper electricity prices.

The electricity switching market is very competitive,  with companies regularly doing special offers, discount codes or other promotions such as cashback.


Who has the Best Electricity Deal in Ireland in January 2019 ?

We carried out a comparison of Electricity prices in Ireland for new customers in January 2019 and this is what we found:

For Higher Usage:
Electricity usage will be higher in larger homes with 4 or more occupants –  and also in smaller households that use only electricity for heating and hot water.  Electricity consumption figures of 6000 kwH or more per year would be possible for higher usage households . The current best switching deal for someone using these amounts of electricity is with Energia .

Energia  have a special offer for new customers only available through the Energia website. You need to enter the promo code CHEAPESTELEC and this will get you 34% off their standard electricity rates for 12 months and  €50 cashback .
This will work out at €1127 in the first year. (Paying by Direct Debit).  This is a saving of €220 compared to Electric Ireland’s standard rates .

The next best deal is €1140 from Electric Ireland (5% discount and €150 cashback for new customers only) –  but they are expected to be increasing prices from March or April.


Medium Usage
For medium sized homes that use gas , oil  or solid fuel to provide heating and hot water ,  an annual electricity usage  of about 4200 Kwh a year would be typical. (This is the average national usage.)
The best deal currently would be to switch your electricity to Energia  . This offer works out at €807 ( with a  34% discount and €50 cashback) and is only available  online with Promo code CHEAPESTELEC at the Energia Website.

This is a saving of €198 on Electric Ireland’s standard rates.

Note:
If you are currently with Energia for your Electricity supply – then the best deal for medium usage households is to switch back to Electric Ireland and get €150 cashback which brings the year one price to €811 )   But they are expected to increase prices after February 2018 .


Best for Lower Usage :
Smaller households will use less electricity. Typical usage for a 1 or 2 person household that doesn’t use electricity for heating might be 3000kwh per year.
If you are not currently with Electric Ireland for your Electricity supply – then the best deal for lower usage households would be to switch to Electric Ireland and get €150 cashback which brings their year one price to €596   but they will be increasing prices from March.)

The next best deal is to switch to Energia .  This will work out at €678 (including €50 cashback). (This Offer of  34% discount and €50 cashback is only available  online with Promo code CHEAPESTELEC .  This special offer is not available if you use Bonkers or Switcher to switch. It is only available online through the Energia Website.


In all cases – after the first 12 months , households should look into switching again to obtain the best deal.

See a Summary of the cheapest Electricity  prices here

If you also have gas – take a look at  our  Dual Fuel Price Comparison 

 


Cashback offers are not included in comparison sites calculations – but we include them. So don’t assume the cheapest deal shown on the comparison sites are actually the best available. Cashback offers can often make a very big difference to the overall cost- especially for lower usage households.


You should really think about switching your energy supplier every 12 months to take advantage of all these special offers – otherwise most providers will just put you back on their standard rates after the first year.
It only takes a few minutes – and as we have shown it can easily save you in the region of €200 just on electricty bills over a year.

Figures correct 10th  Jan 2019

electricity comparison

 

Switching Credit Card

There are several credit card companies in Ireland that do introductory offers of zero interest or low interest to people switching switch credit card provider.

All these credit card offers are for new customers and they usually allow you to transfer your existing credit card balance and pay little or no interest on it  for several months. Some credit cards may also offer zero interest on purchases for several months – this can be good if you have a specific large purchase in mind.

For example Bank of Ireland offer an interest free period of 7 months on balance  transfers – OR 0% for 6 months on purchases. Apply Here

You can see our regularly updated list of the best  Credit Card Offers for switchers here.

Balance transfer to an interest free card  can be a good way of helping to clear credit card debts. But you still have to pay off the debt – not just ignore it.

Tip:   Your old  credit card account will remain open even if you pay it off and stop using it. You should inform your old credit card company or bank  in writing and tell them to close the account.  When you get a Letter of Closure – send it to to your new credit card company so you’re not charged stamp duty twice.

 

You must be over 18 to apply for a credit card –  and have an annual income over a certain amount, usually in the region of at least  €15,000 a year.

See the Credit Cards With the Lowest Interest Rates