Best Place to Buy Sterling in Ireland

If you are travelling  to the UK it can be wise to bring some cash with you. – but you might want to compare the Pound to Euro exchange rates on offer before you buy Sterling here in Ireland. Don’t assume that an offer of  “commmission free” currency will give you the best deal. There are a few places in Ireland where you can carry out currency exchange and swap your Euros for Pounds Sterling . An Post (The Post Office) seems to be a popular choice – but as you will see below – you can usually get better exchange rates elsewhere.

Exchange rates will change every day –   and there has been a lot of volatility recently with Sterling exchange rates since the UK/EU  Brexit vote. We carried out a quick comparison of the main currency exchange companies on the same day to find out the  Best Place to Buy Sterling in Ireland .

If you are looking for information about transferring larger amounts of money to the UK or other international destinations  – you should read our article on where to get the Best Currency Exchange Rates

We checked how much it would cost in Euros to buy £1000 GBP Sterling cash . We compared the figures from the currency companies websites at roughly the same time on 16th April 2018. All the exchange companies we used in the comparison say they do not charge commission .

The Best Deal was At the No1 Currency Website  where it would have cost you €1185.11 for £1000 GBP  . You can order and pay for it online and get it delivered to your door for free. The delivery is by An Post registered post and is fully insured . (Orders under €750 cost €6 for delivery) .  Minimum order is €400.   Popular currencies such as Sterling and US Dollars should usually be delivered next day if ordered before noon. Other currencies will take 2 to 3 days. You can check their current exchange rates on the No1 Currency Website

2:  At they were quoting a price of €1186.38 for £1000 Sterling. You can reserve your currency online for collection and pay for it when you pick up. But- they only have 2 pick up locations in central Dublin , they do not deliver.

3:  An Post were quoting a price of €1191.86 for buying £1000 Pounds.
They don’t allow online ordering, you have to go to a Post Office branch that does currency exchange . This service  is only available in larger towns and cities – see here. An Post only sell Sterling and US Dollars.

4: Bank of Ireland quoted a price of €1192.32 – and they also charge a fee of €2.50 – so that would be a total of €1194.82

5:  The worst deal we found was from ICE ( International Currency Exchange) – it would have cost you €1219.96 for £1000 Sterling. You can reserve your currency online and then collect it and pay for it at their Dublin Airport kiosks.

Another option to consider for making purchases when you are abroad is an N26 Bank Account.   This is an “online only” bank account based in Germany – but it has several thousand Irish customers.
The N26 Mastercard  has no fees when making purchases in non Euro currencies  – and the exchange rate will be the same as any other Mastercard .
It’s a good idea for a  “second” account for people who travel a bit or who make a few online non Euro purchases a year.  You load it with Euros from your main bank account and can then spend in any currency . N26 account is free to set up and free to run –  unlike most of the  mainstream Irish Banks.
Some people use it as their main account – you can have salaries paid in and set up direct debits just like any hight street bank. (Just no cash or cheques)

There is also the option of using an ATM abroad to withdraw Sterling  – see here for  details of ATM Charges Abroad .

See our recent comparison on the cost of buying US Dollars in Ireland

4 thoughts on “Best Place to Buy Sterling in Ireland

  1. Hi, slightly off topic. Can you tell me how do I lodge a cheque for US Dollars into my bank account or credit union? Is either of these options possible?

    Cheers, Fred

    • Fred, most Credit Union’s offer a foreign exchange service, to which they will buy your cheque from you and credit you account upon cheque clearance.
      Cheers, C

    • PTSB will charge around €75 to lodge a USD cheque This is because they send the cheque back to the originating bank to get the funds sent. This is the safest option for the bank. Other banks may also charge this much – but for well known / trusted customers and well known cheque sources (big companies) – they can choose to lodge it for free or a small fee.

      Some banks may want to charge for “collection” where they want to ensure the cheque is “good” before paying out.

  2. If you buy Sterling cash from An Post they will not buy back any notes you have left over when you return. They don’t tell you that when you are buying from them and they have no notices to this effect in the Post office. If you don’t travel to the UK very often buy your Sterling elsewhere so you can exchange any surplus on your return.

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