I was in the US for work last week and I'm going to Ireland next week. I've got about $400 that I want to convert to Euros.

I am in the UK just now, what is the most sensible way to do this?

I know that if I got to a money exchanger here I'll get hit with two sets of conversion fees.

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    Wait until next week, when you are in Ireland? – Tor-Einar Jarnbjo Jul 18 '14 at 9:59
  • I would but as far as I can tell I'm in the middle of nowhere on a customer site and I arrive quite late to the airport. – Omar Kooheji Jul 18 '14 at 10:00
  • Find someone from Europe who's on their way to America, and change money with them? – Gagravarr Jul 18 '14 at 13:18
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    You can do it at the airport at which you land. Why wouldn't you just do it there. I highly doubt the possibility of avoiding the two way transfer fee. – Aditya Somani Jul 18 '14 at 16:16
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    Exchange $20 in the UK (this should cover your fare from the airport to your hotel) and then change the rest on the next day. – JonathanReez Jul 19 '14 at 9:16

Any kind of currency transaction that involves (a) cash and (b) a human being handling that cash is going to incur charges of at least 15-20%, which is pretty much what it takes to keep that person employed and sitting behind a desk with some safes and secure glass and all that nonsense, not to mention the cost of moving big piles of cash securely around between countries.

So when possible, never use (a) cash or (b) humans. In general I try to use ATMs to withdraw money from my own checking account in the destination country. There may be a 2-3% fee for doing so but this is dramatically less than the fee for going up to a money changer.

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  • 1
    15-20% of what?! As of right now, the midmarket GBP => EUR rate is 1.25 (courtesy XE); I can walk down the road to Thomas Exchange Global and get 1 GBP => 1.2325 EUR. I don't see anything being 15-20% of anything there... – AakashM Sep 9 '14 at 9:36
  • 20%?! This is just wrong, maybe you can lose 20% but not because of fees, but because of a bad exchange rate. So dont change at the airport, check the exchange rates and ask how much they charge for changing. – Gnusper Dec 2 '16 at 12:56

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