Pound worth just 85 euro cents at UK airports as sterling sinks

At Gatwick the pound is at parity with the dollar

Simon Calder
Travel Correspondent
Tuesday 30 July 2019 20:04 BST
What does a no-deal Brexit mean?

The pound has sunk well below €1 at Britain’s biggest airports – while the dollar is at parity.

At the ICE desk at Heathrow airport on Tuesday morning, The Independent was quoted £117 for buying €100 – making each pound worth just 85 euro cents.

At Gatwick airport on Monday night, the rate was £1 = €0.90. With commission added to a €100 transaction, the cost in sterling was £116.

The interbank rate at 7am sank below £1 = €1.09, as the downward pressure on the pound continued.

The currency market has marked down sterling as the prospect of a no-deal Brexit appears increasingly likely. At the peak of the holiday season, prices for British travellers will be at a two-year high.

The best rates for the euro found by The Independent were for “click and collect” transactions at London bureaux de change: €1.08 at branches of Thomas Exchange Global or ICE at Waterloo station.

The interbank rate for dollars was £1 = $1.21, but Moneycorp at Gatwick airport was quoting parity: £1 = $1.

Anyone changing £1,000 into the US currency and immediately back to sterling would lose over one-third of their money, receiving just £648.

At ICE and Travelex at Heathrow airport, the “click and collect” rate was $1.19.

Rates for less popular currencies are extremely unfavourable at Britain’s biggest airport.

The rate for Canadian dollars at Gatwick was C$1.30, compared with an interbank rate of C$1.60.

For the Turkish lira, the rate was TL5.32, 22 per cent worse than the interbank rate.

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