Sending money to Ireland from the UK?
Time to use a currency specialist
With large numbers of Irish citizens residing and working in the UK permanently and many others commuting to work there from the Republic, foreign exchange rate fluctuations between pounds and euros can significantly impact the value of people’s money when transferring funds back to Ireland.
Ireland was the fastest growing economy in Europe in 2014 – according to the Central Statistics Office Ireland 81,900 Irish citizens still moved overseas last year. With a shared language, recognised skill-set, geographical convenience and close cultural ties, 17,900 chose to live and work in the UK – making it the most popular destination for the Irish diaspora.
As well as over 400,000 Irish citizens identified in the last census as permanently residing in the UK and many more working in the country on a temporary basis, there is an increasing number of ‘commuter migrants’ travelling back and forth for work. A 2013 study carried out by University College Cork into the experiences of Irish ‘commuter migrants’ who travel to Britain found that most are well-paid professionals working in finance, banking, accountancy, academia, media, engineering, law and medicine.
This large and often well-paid Irish workforce based in the UK, creates a requirement for a variety of international payments to be made back to Ireland. Whether you’re transferring your salary, making mortgage payments, paying maintenance costs or simply sending money to family or friends, you will have to exchange your funds from sterling into euros.
The volatile nature of the exchange rates market can have a significant impact on the value of your money. For example, following the continued economic uncertainty surrounding Greece, the sterling-euro exchange rate hit a seven year high in March 2015, with the euro worth €1.40 to the pound, compared to €1.25 eight months earlier in July 2014. The impact of these fluctuations if you are making monthly salary transfers of £5,000 to Ireland is compelling. At the March rate, you would have got €7,000. Transferring that amount at the lower rate would have left you with €6,250 – a difference of €750 between the high and low points.
When transferring money back to Ireland, you would be forgiven for thinking your bank is the obvious choice. But did you know you are likely to pay more using a traditional high street bank? Now there’s an alternative – one that can save you time and money. The Irish Times International Money Transfer Service, operated by exchange experts, moneycorp, offers readers the chance to benefit from better exchange rates and lower transfer fees than those ordinarily offered by the banks. The moneycorp exchange rates are typically 2-3pc better than you could get from a high street bank. On a transfer of £10,000 into Euros, that could equate to a saving of over €400. Not only this, but the overseas transfer fees are lower too, as little as €5, compared to the banks who can typically charge as much as €40 each time – meaning you could stand to save hundreds a year on fees alone.
In addition, moneycorp provides you with a dedicated account manager to provide you with specialist guidance on the foreign exchange market and your currency requirements. Based in moneycorp’s Irish office, he or she can help guide you on the best time to make a transfer, in order to get the most from fast moving exchange rates and maximise the value of your money.