Opening a UK Sterling Bank Account

Moving Euros to Sterling
The financial turmoil in Ireland  and other countries in the Eurozone  in recent years –  resulted in many Irish people withdrawing Euros from their Irish bank accounts and transferring it into other currencies.

It appears that many Irish residents are transferring money to UK banks operating in Ireland or to UK banks in Northern Ireland or other parts of the UK.
Concerns about the  Irish Bank Guarantee and the future of the Euro have made people more worried about their savings. The situation in Greece in 2015 has not helped much either.

If you want to open a Sterling bank account in the UK while you are living in Ireland it should be fairly easy.
In Northern Ireland you will find that most of the banks there will allow you to open a Sterling Bank Account if you are resident in the Republic Of Ireland. It is probably best to ring around the various banks before you go just to check (Try Bank of Ireland, Ulster Bank and Allied Irish )

We recommend opening the new account with a small amount of Sterling in cash to begin with. Don’t go drawing out loads of Sterling in cash from your Irish account from an ATM and don’t ask your Irish bank to exchange all your savings into Pounds in cash. You could pay heavily with poor exchange rates and commissions.

Once you have the UK sterling account set up – then you can arrange for the currency exchange and transfer from your Irish Euro account to the Sterling account in the UK. You might assume you have to do this currency exchange through your own bank in Ireland – but you don’t have to use your bank.

There are specialist currency exchange brokers that you can use – and their exchange rates will usually be better than the banks. On paper – the actual rates may not look much better at first glance – but a difference in the exchange rate of just 1 cent in the Euro on a €100,000 Euros transaction would save you a £1000 Euros. Not bad for a couple of phone calls and a bit of form filling .

One company that we recommend that specialises in Foreign Currency Exchange is called Currency Solutions. They are regulated and authorised by the UK Financial Services Authority and HM Revenue. They will carry out currency transfers from Euros to Sterling as well as most other major currencies. You can make a no obligation enquiry about your currency requirements online here.currency brokers ireland

If you prefer – you can telephone the Irish Links contact: Ernie Enver direct on 01 4311344 or on the UK number 0044 207 740 0000 .
Ernie will be able to help you with all your currency exchange questions. He will call you back. Mention “Irish Links” website when you call.

Another currency exchange company we also recommend is Transfermate. They are based in Ireland and are regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland . You can check out more details on the Transfermate website or call them on 01 6353776

Of course – always check with your own bank first to see what exchange rate they will offer you.
Get the bank to confirm how much Sterling you will get after the conversion – after all fees have been deducted. If you just compare the raw exchange rates – the difference in those figures may look really small and you may feel it’s not worth the bit of extra hassle – but when you see the difference in the total amount you will get after the exchange – it could amount to several hundreds of pounds.

If you are worried about the Euro weakening even further against Sterling – you can reserve an exchange rate up to a year in advance. So – when rates are in your favour – but your money is tied up in a fixed rate account or in property – you can reserve the rate and make the exchange weeks or months in the future .