I am going to carry £25 cash (2x £10 note, 1x £2 coin and 3x £1 coins) with me on a flight to UK.

I don't have any receipt for this money. What questions I might face at immigration because of this?

I cleared my immigration couple of days back. The officer didn't ask me anything regarding finances.

  • Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat.
    – JonathanReez
    Sep 28, 2021 at 22:35

4 Answers 4


None - that is an entirely reasonable amount of cash to have on you. You don't need to declare that you have it, declarations are only required above £10,000


You must declare cash of £10,000 or more to UK customs authorities if you carry it between Great Britain (England, Scotland and Wales) and another country.

  • 76
    In the extremely unlikely event that anybody asks how you got 25 pounds, something like "from a currency exchange store" will be perfectly fine. Nobody will expect you to have kept a receipt. But I really cannot stress enough just how unlikely it is that anybody will ask at all.
    – Chris H
    Sep 27, 2021 at 8:25
  • 20
    @Aak "if they ask me how did you get these pounds what should I answer?" The truth, unless it is illegal. Immigration asks all sorts of odd questions, and it is more about assessing how you answer than what the answer is. That you appear honest (and non-criminal) is the important thing.
    – Dave
    Sep 27, 2021 at 11:12
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    To be clear, unlike some countries, there are absolutely no restrictions on who can own, export, import, exchange or trade UK pounds. Even the £10,000 rule is just that you have to tell customs about it, not that you can't bring it in (or out). Sep 27, 2021 at 13:43
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    When I read the question, I assumed OP was somehow carrying 25 lbs (as in, 12 kilograms) of bills. Would have made for an interesting topic. And yea, as everyone said, no one cares about 25 GBP.
    – VSO
    Sep 28, 2021 at 13:31
  • 3
    @VSO Google says anywhere between (extreme napkin math) only 780 GBP if it's in 1 GBP coins up to 1,134,000 GBP in 50 GBP notes with bank bands around every stack of fifty notes. ...about a brief-case worth of bills, I think. Sep 28, 2021 at 17:22

If anything, you're going to be questioned as to why you have only 25 pounds. Unless you look extremely suspicious, nobody's going to ask about the money's origin until you get well into the thousands.

  • 28
    Even if you look extremely suspicious, £25 is such a small amount that it would be normal for anyone to have that amount of money. It would be like asking for a receipt for your shoes or your jumper or how you paid for your last haircut.
    – gnasher729
    Sep 27, 2021 at 16:26
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    In fact, it's probably expected that if you are visiting any country, you would have some of that country's currency on hand. It's probably a good idea if possible to prepare and exchange some before leaving, because you can't always count on being able to exchange for it when you get there, and you're likely to need it pretty soon after arriving. Sep 27, 2021 at 17:18
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    @DarrelHoffman India forbids visitors from bringing in Indian rupees, I don't know if there are other countries with similar restrictions. Sep 27, 2021 at 19:55
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    @PeterGreen Morocco is a country where imports of the local currency are only "tolerated" up to 2000 dirhams, roughly 190€: iatatravelcentre.com/…
    – Law29
    Sep 28, 2021 at 10:35
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    @DarrelHoffman eh, lots of people don't withdraw cash until they get there these days. I wouldn't say it's an expectation any longer, as long as you have some means of paying for things.
    – Muzer
    Sep 28, 2021 at 14:50

Countries that set their exchange rates away from the market rate generally require that you only trade with official sources and that you don't take currency in/out of the country.

However, countries that do not mess with the exchange rates have no such restrictions, nobody cares about currency being carried across borders until it reaches quantities that suggest illegal activity is going on.

The British Pound is an example of the latter, nobody is going to give a hoot about 25 pounds. Off the top of my head the Euro, Canadian Dollar, Australian Dollar and Japanese Yen are likewise hard currencies. I'm sure New Zealand is also but I forget their currency unit. Beyond that my knowledge is way too out of date to say what other countries have hard currencies.

(Since there has been question about the term "hard currency"--hard currencies are currencies where the government doesn't decree what the exchange rate is, it's market price. A private seller will offer about the same rate as the government, there's no concept of unauthorized trades. Private trades exist on a small scale in areas dealing with tourists--it is not uncommon for shops near a border to accept the currency on the other side of the border.)

  • 1
    @Llama coins, bullion and precious metals. Some might argue credit cards are hard currency even though they bend a little.
    – fabspro
    Sep 28, 2021 at 10:04
  • 6
    Given the context, Loren is talking about currencies that are freely traded on international foreign exchange markets and whose exchange rates are not directly manipulated by their government. In the West we usually take this for granted, but there are many large, important countries where currency exchange is tightly controlled. I think this is what the OP is worried about. Sep 28, 2021 at 12:00
  • 3
    The relevant term here would be a floating exchange rate - hard currency is somewhat unrelated. In addition to the currencies named, pretty much any major Western European currency (Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Switzerland) would be considered a hard currency. Their concern with cash is not legitimate trade, but its use in money laundering and drugs trade. Laundering 25 GBP simply isn't worth the trip
    – MSalters
    Sep 28, 2021 at 20:54
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    @Llama Hard currency is that which is widely accepted and the value of which is expected to remain relatively stable. That makes it attractive for people with other currencies, as it is a safe investment and may be used to buy foreign goods. US$, EUR, JPY are traditional hard currencies. Argentinian pesos, Brazilian reals, Venezuela Bolivars and Zimbabwean dollars are weak currencies. But Loren uses the term incorrectly; as Oscar Bravo a better expression would be "freely traded currencies".
    – SJuan76
    Sep 28, 2021 at 23:07
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    And the currency of New Zealand is of course famously too time consuming to research. Best just to type you "forget their currency unit" Sep 29, 2021 at 8:04

While it was not UK, this might still be relevant.

While I was traveling to Germany on my new passport for the first time, I was detained for several minutes when I couldn't reproduce my return flight. I was then asked how much money I have on me. It was if I recall correctly €400. I was also asked to produce the money so the border police can verify it. I was even asked to spread the bills so that he can count, he said he is not allowed to touch them. I know this was a cascade of mistakes on my part, I should be carrying my old passport along with a printed return ticket. If I hadn't done these mistakes, my cash wouldn't even be asked.

As long as you have a support letter or reservations and a return ticket, I don't think anyone would ask you how much cash you have on you. If you state that you have £25 without being asked, you will either be laughed at or will be assumed to act suspiciously.

In several circumstances that I entered UK, I was asked to translate for some Turkish visitors (although I am not a sworn translator). In none of those occasions, I ever heard of the amount of cash the visitors have on their person.

I hope this helps.

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