If you're planning your Scottish vacation you'll want to know a wee bit about Scottish Currency.
Well in actual fact we don't have our 'own' separate money - we share the £ (sterling) with the rest of the United Kingdom. So whether you're just planning your budget, working out how much you'll spend on gifts and 'goodies' or how much you're likely to spend on making phone calls home
you'll want to know a wee bit about Scottish Currency.
You may already have investigated when it is safe to travel and indeed when is the
best time to visit Scotland, as well as considering all sorts of other information for overseas travel.
But back to Scottish Currency - it is a decimal currency and every £ (pound) is divided into
100p (pence). There's been a lot of political discussion over the years about whether we should go over to the euro, but there has been much opposition to this, so doesn't look likely in the near future.
The Scottish currency banknotes differ in design from English ones, but are of the same value and are accepted everywhere in the UK. English notes are accepted in Scotland. I have to admit though that if you are going from Scotland to England and call in at some very small shop, the shopkeeper might look at your Scottish money a bit strange!
English and Scottish Currency
Coins come in denominations of £2, £1, 50p, 20p, 10p, 2p and 1p. As far as banknotes are concerned, Scottish banks such as Clydesdale, Royal Bank of Scotland issue their own bank notes of every denominations. However, the Bank of England issues notes of £5, £10, £20 and £50 banknotes and these are legal tender in Scotland.
Scottish Ten Pound Note
Bringing in Money to Scotland
You can bring as much money into Scotland as you wish, in any form. If you choose to use Travellers' Cheques, they can be changed at banks and 'Bureaux de change' (usually found at Airports, Ports, Train Stations, Travel Agencies, and High Streets in some cities).
There isn't usually a charge for cashing Sterling (£) Travellers' Cheques, but each bank is different and they may well place a charge. The advice Banks will give you is to note the serial numbers of all your Travellers' Cheques and keep this information in a separate place from the cheques themselves.
Of course you may decide to use your Credit or Debit Card. You can use these to buy things, pay for Hotels, some restaurants. But some smaller establishments such as coffee shops have a 'minimum spend' when taking credit cards.
You can also get Scottish currency from your own account using one of the many Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs) or Autotellers (Cash Machine) are widely available throughout the country. These are not only outside banks, but often outside Large Shops (Grocery Stores) and Petrol Stations (Gas Station). Once again, sometimes a charge is made for this service. Please ensure that your card has a PIN (Personal Identification Number), otherwise you won't be able to use it.
It's also worth noting that many stores will not take personal cheques but only Credit or Debit Cards (with your PIN number) to improve security of your account and money.
Of course if you bring in your own currency that can be changed at Banks, Bureaux de Change. Some levy a charge and of course the rate of exchange is usually set for that particular day.
Please note that the majority of banks are open Mon-Fri 0900-1700 with some city centre branches open Saturday morning.
Value Added Tax (VAT) and Refunds
Most goods and services have VAT at 17.5% added. There is no 'local' tax on goods in Britain, so normally, the price you see - is the price you pay! Non-EU visitors to Scotland can reclaim it on goods only, by using the "Foreign Exchange Tax Free Shopping" arrangements.
You can reclaim VAT at participating stores. A Tax-Free Shopping Form is obtained and completed at the shop where you must also show your passport. The form has to be presented to HM Customs and Excise, as you leave the UK. For more information, see HM Revenue & Customs for all the details.
You'll find no hard and fast rules about tipping in Scotland. Only tip if you've been happy with the service. A 10-15% tip is usual, especially in a restaurant with table service. Please look at your bill carefully, as some establishments add the tip on automatically. So keep an eye on that otherwise you might tip twice. However, tipping in bars is not usual.
For beauty salons, hairdressers, taxi fares it is usual to give around a 10-15% tip depending on the service.
If you are planning a trip and have been helped by this page on Scottish Currency, then please see also the following pages:-
When is it safe to travel to Scotland? - Check out some information on safe travel to Scotland.
When is the Best Time to Visit Scotland? - Consider some of these things as you plan the best time to have your trip to Scotland.
Make Long Distance Calls Overseas - Be prepared to make and receive calls during your trip to Scotland.
Overseas Travel Information - Discover some of the things you might want to consider as you plan your Scottish vacation.
Maps and Weather - Look more closely at the weather and be prepared with what clothes to bring
Places to see in Fife - Have a look at some of the lovely places you might want to visit in the Kingdom of Fife
Scottish Food Recipes - Have a look at some of the food you might want to try when you are here.
Books & Music Stores - Browse through the stores and get yourself some guide books, maps or other Scottish books before you come.
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