Getting the Best Currency Exchange Rates – :
If you need to transfer large amounts of money from one country to another – you will usually get the best exchange rates from a specialist currency broker or an online currency exchange service. The worst exchange rates are usually given by the main banks.
On paper the actual exchange rate differences may look tiny – just fractions of a cent. But as an example – a difference of just €0.005 in the Euro to Sterling exchange rate could cost you €1000 on a €200,000 exchange! Why let the banks have it ?
Maybe you are buying property overseas or moving to Ireland. Maybe you are importing a car or just transferring some of your savings into another currency ?
Maybe you run a business that does a lot of trade in different currencies ?.
Whatever the reason – if you need to transfer large amounts of money overseas – Euro to Sterling , Sterling to Euro, – US Dollars to Euro, Euro to Dollars – or if you want to exchange any other currency such as Australian Dollars , Brazilian Real etc. … you should first check out the savings you can make by using a currency exchange specialist instead of just asking your bank to take care of it.
Some Recommended Currency Exchange Companies.
Currency Solutions is a UK based currency specialist firm that can carry out a wide range of currency transfers. They are authorised by the UK Financial Conduct Authority . They have an online platform for transfers of up to a maximum of £20,000 for personal customers (£50,000 business customers) . If you prefer – you can arrange transfers over the phone too. You can visit the Currency Solutions website here for a free no obligation quote and they will call you back. You can also call them on their Irish number 01 431 1344 or on their UK number 0044 207 740 0000– ask for the Money Guide Ireland contact – Ernie Enver. He should be able to give you a quick response to any queries.
FairFx are London based foreign exchange specialists and they also have an office in Dublin. FairFx have been operating since 2007 and are fully regulated by both the UK Financial Conduct Authority and the UK HMRC . You can arrange international money transfers with FairFx online or over the telephone. FairFx will let you easily set up regular transfers such as salary, pension or rental payments . 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.
Transfermate is a Dublin based foreign exchange company that can help individuals and businesses to send and receive international payments. Transfermate is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland, TransferMate is also registered with UK HM Customs & Excise as well as being regulated across the USA, Canada, Europe and Australasia. You can set up an online account and arrange currency transfers via their website or you can phone them in Dublin 01 6353776
With most currency specialists you are able to lock in an exchange rate for up to 12 months in advance – and so remove the worry of any future currency fluctuations.
For example – you might be buying a property abroad. If the Euro was to suddenly weaken before you managed to sell your house – then the proceeds from the house sale would be worth thousands less in Pounds or USD or Australian Dollars etc. By reserving a guaranteed exchange, rate up to 12 months ahead, you can prevent exchange rate fluctuations from wrecking your plans. You will usually need to pay a deposit of around 10%.
Currency Exchange for Businesses
If you run a business in Ireland or the UK with regular large payments or invoices in different currencies – then a currency exchange firm can save your business a lot of money on exchange rates and charges. You will already be aware that profit margins can be severely cut by exchange rate fluctuations – but by fixing your exchange rates in advance you can get some certainty . (It’s called Hedging – the big companies do it all the time).
Transfermate is based in Dublin and deal with plenty of business clients. It is fairly easy to set up an online account and arrange currency transfers via their website or you can phone them for the personal on Dublin 01 6353776
FairFx are London based and already provide international currency services to over 5,000 businesses. They can help your business save money on international money transfers. You can call FairFx on their Irish number 01 5665546 or on their UK number (0044) 20 7858200. Or visit their website
Currency Solutions also specalise in currency transfers for businesses. Most transactions can be done over the phone with personal guidance from a broker. They also have an online platform available for those who prefer it. Call them on their Irish number 01 431 1344 or on their UK number 0044 207 740 0000– ask for the Money Guide Ireland contact – Ernie Enver.
For some sole traders and freelancers – you could cut banking costs by using N26. They are an online-only bank authorised by the Irish Central Bank and they allow businesses in Ireland to open an account with them. (UK coming soon). There are no account management fees. They don’t deal with cash or cheques – but if your business deals just with card payments and online bank transfers – they are a good option for multi currency payments. They might be useful as a second account . Find out more at N26
Transferring Smaller Amounts :
If you need to transfer smaller amounts of money to a bank account abroad – in a different currency – you can use online exchange services such as CurrencyFair or TransferWise
These two companies are examples of “peer to peer” exchange. They cut out the banks and, for a small fee , allow you to get exchange rates that can be pretty close to the interbank rates. These are good for sending smaller, regular payments to family abroad or for smaller purchases in foreign currencies (cars etc). You can use a debit card or bank transfer to send the Euros and get it converted to any one of dozens of different currencies. Sterling, US Dollars AUS Dollars , Polish Zloty and many more. You will need a destination bank account for the converted currency to be paid to – but it does not have to be your own bank account.
(Note: – CurrencyFair use CHAPS to send GBP payments – and some banks in Northern Ireland will charge you to receive it – about £6 is normal.)
For security purposes you will usually need to provide some proof of ID before doing your first transfer on these websites.
Holiday Money (Cash)
If you are just going on a business trip or holiday and want to get some foreign currency in cash before you travel – you should read our article on Travel Money . We have found in several surveys that No1 Currency were giving the best deal on buying Sterling (and they deliver it to your home for free on orders over €750)
If you use your debit or credit card whilst abroad for day to day spending there will be additional fees and charges when you spend outside the Eurozone – find out more in our article on Card Charges outside the Eurozone
European bank N26 is available to Irish residents – and they don’t charge any fees on debit card spending outside the Eurozone – so they are worth looking into if you travel a bit or do a good bit of online shopping in the UK or USA.
Also – see more here about ATM Charges Abroad