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A guide to money in Scotland

Date published: 21/6/2024

Money and spending in Scotland

Are you planning a trip to Eagle Brae soon? Our luxury log cabin village is the perfect escape in the beautiful Scottish Highlands. To help you prepare for your holiday, we are answering some of your questions about money, currency and spending in Scotland.

What is the currency of Scotland?

In Scotland, we use the pound sterling (GBP), just like the rest of the United Kingdom (Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland). We have our own Scottish bank notes, but all cash in pound sterling is accepted here. Therefore bank notes issued in England and Northern Ireland are also valid. Likewise, you can use your Scottish banknotes in other UK countries. Check this currency converter for the latest exchange rate.

What coins and banknotes are used?

Currency is issued in pounds (£) and pence (p). There are 100 pence in one pound. Bank notes come in denominations of £5, £10, £20, £50 and £100. Coins come in 1p, 2p, 5p, 10p, 20p, 50p, £1 and £2.

Can I use my credit card in Scotland?

All major credit cards, such as Visa and Mastercard, are widely accepted in Scotland. But please note, some places don’t take American Express. It’s always worth carrying some cash for emergencies too.

Woman spending with credit card in a restaurant

Are there cash machines?

In cities and towns, there are usually plenty of ATMs, however you may struggle to find them in small villages and more remote areas. Here at Eagle Brae we are in a rural area and our closest cash machines are in Beauly village, around a 20-minute drive away. Some ATMs are free to use, others may charge a withdrawal fee.

What about travel cards and currency exchange?

Exchange Bureaus offer currency exchange services for travellers. Our nearest one is at Beauly Post Office. Here, you can order foreign currency and collect it in the branch. You can also get a Travel Money Card, which is pre-pay multi-currency card that’s not linked to your bank account.

Is tax included in the price?

In Scotland and around the UK, any value added tax (VAT) is already included in the price of goods in shops and restaurants etc. So the price you see is the price you pay.

When should I tip in Scotland?

There is not a strong tipping culture in Scotland and the UK, but tips for good service are usually accepted in cafes, bars and restaurants, at a rate of around 10%. However, you don’t need to tip if a service charge has been added to your bill. It’s very common to tip for certain services in the Highlands, such as deer stalking ghillies and fishing ghillies. Other situations you may choose to tip in include at the hairdressers/barbers and in taxis.

Polymer Scottish bank notes in a wallet

We hope this has answered some of your questions about money in Scotland. Find more travel tips and advice on the Eagle Brae blog. If you want to find out more about our luxury log cabins, nestled on a remote hillside in the Highlands, explore all cabins here.

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