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How To Save Money On Currency Exchange

currency exchange
International payments expose you to exchange rates and getting the best rate can save you money. Specialists Currency Fair explain the impact of exchange rates and how much you can save.

Written exclusively for Expat Network by Currency Fair


Nobody likes getting short-changed, especially when the sums involved are significant.

Before making your international money transfer it can pay to do some research into the exchange rates on offer to exchange sterling to euro and the fees involved.

At CurrencyFair, we know our exchange rates and low-cost transfer fee save our customers money everyday. We decided to do a little digging into just how much our users can save compared to banks in the UK.


How Much Will I Receive When I Transfer £10,000 To Euros?

We asked the same question to leading banks Lloyds and RBS and we added in the popular transfer provider PayPal for good measure.

“If I transfer £10,000 to euro, how much will I receive?”

We compared the exchange rates quoted and transfer fees against CurrencyFair. The results were eye-opening.

Data collected on Jan 14 2019

Compared to the banks, a CurrencyFair customer would receive over €547 more on a £10,000 transfer. These are tangible savings for anyone looking for a good deal.

To put this into context, you can treat yourself and a loved one to a return flight from London to the Big Apple for around £270 return with certain airlines.


The 0% Commission is never really 0%

Many banks and money transfer companies claim to have “no fees” or “0% commission”. Their real charges are secretly hidden in the exchange rate.

Banks exchange currency with each other according to the real currency market exchange rate. However, this rate is not available to individuals or consumers.

Our comparison exercise shows just how much this can cost you and how much money you are missing out on:

  • The GBP → EUR real currency market exchange rate was £1 → €1.12104 on xe.com
  • Transferring £10,000 at this rate should give you €11,210.
  • But, the worst performing bank (RBS) only offered £1 → €1.07 meaning €510 worth of hidden fees to be paid
  • Lloyds was a bit better offering £1 → €1.0852 meaning a difference of €358 in your transfer amount
  • PayPal sent the least amount, just €10,620, meaning you were secretly charged €590 along the way.


Avoid PayPal currency conversion fees

The example above shows how unfavourable PayPal exchange rates can be and how expensive their transfer fees are.
Starting at 2.5% and ranging up to 4% depending on your country of residence, PayPal’s exchange rate slices large chunks off your money transfer.


How expensive are currency transfer fees?

On top of their hidden charge in the exchange rate, many banks also charge a hefty fixed transfer fee.

At CurrencyFair, we are transparent about our fees, and believe everyone should get a fair exchange rate.

For GBP→EUR transfers, we charge a small average margin of just 0.45% on the real exchange rate, and a fixed fee of just €3. With CurrencyFair, a customer converting £10,000 would receive €11,167. That’s more than €467 more than the worst performing bank (RBS) in our comparison exercise, and a whopping €547 more than with PayPal.

Why hand over so much of your hard-earned money to the banks? Take a look at the real exchange rates and real savings available with CurrencyFair.


Join the network of customers who save on their international money transfers and get your first five transfers for free!