Many expatriates living in Spain, especially pensioners, receive payments to UK bank accounts in sterling which they then use for living expenses in Spain.
The current crisis caused by coronavirus has seen the exchange rate between the pound and the euro fall by around 7 per cent but the published rate and that which you will receive is quite different so it is important to keep a few facts in mind.
British high street banks don’t give the best exchange rates and often have relatively high set charges with transfers taking several days.
Consider using one of the specialist companies that transfer currency as their rates are normally better, their charges are lower and they arrange next day payment.
At one time, it was possible to pay into your account with them using a bank card but due to money laundering fears, it is now often necessary to transfer funds from your bank to theirs (there should be no charge) to then purchase the euros to send to Spain.
For the vast majority of transactions, the currency transfer operators that advertise with Euro Weekly News are sure to save you money.
Another way of obtaining euros is by using a British bank card in Spanish cash machines, especially now that the banks are closing their doors to cash transactions but this can also be a tricky business if you want to get the best deal.
Different banks (and there are also plenty of independently operated cash machines around) charge different one off amounts for using their service and in addition often offer a very poor rate of exchange so be alert to this.
They give you the option to accept the rate offered or to let your bank charge their rate and generally speaking, it is better to decline their rate and use the UK bank rate.
Make sure that when you do go to take money out of a cash machine that you are wearing gloves as the virus can transfer from the metal of the machine and keep your hands away from your face.
In closing give a thought for those living in Spain and working in Gibraltar who now not only have to be prepared for long queues to get in and out to work but also see their salaries decrease in value on a regular basis.
This news article is brought to you by Currencies Direct
Currencies Direct’s mission is to make people’s/businesses lives easier by making the flow of money around the world simpler and more direct. They change money from one currency into another. There’s more to it than that, but they like to keep things simple.
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