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Monthly Wrap: 4 Countries where the pound is on the rise

currency-newsMonthly Wrap: 4 Countries where the pound is on the rise
2019 has been a rocky year for the British pound, but the currency is no stranger to choppy waters, having endured three years of Brexit uncertainty and economic trials. As Boris Johnson angles for a no-deal outcome and the spectre of recession haunts the UK economy, there may be even tougher times ahead for Sterling.

The pound has recorded some notable losses against some of its rivals this year, making it more expensive to move your money abroad.

But Sterling is not alone. Around a dozen currencies around the world have suffered even greater losses, with global economic woes and trade conflicts weighing on the local coin.

So while the pound’s depreciations mean less attractive currency exchanges in popular destinations like Spain, France or Scandinavia, there are still some cost-effective destinations for Brits who fancy the expat life.

We’ve selected six which we think warrant closer inspection if you’re looking to get the most for your money.

Sri Lanka - Sri Lankan rupee (LKR)

The pound to Sri Lankan rupee exchange rate has fallen since January 2019, but is still higher than it was a year ago and far higher than it was at the start of 2018.

While Sri Lanka has experienced a rough few years politically and has taken a long time to recover from the devastating tsunami of 2004, the nation has managed to bounce back.

The tourism industry is fast recovering from the 2019 Easter bombings incident, and the nation is now considered safe for travellers and expats.

The rupee is yet to regain all of the past year’s losses against sterling, so you’ll still get 217 rupees for every pound rather than the 207 of just a year ago.

The island is known for a rich cultural heritage which spans thousands of years, along with a unique cuisine and fine arts scene – added to this, the cost of living is extremely affordable.
  • Meal out for one = £1.20 no-frills, £11.35 mid-range 3-course for two
  • Beer = £2.05 per bottle
  • Cappuccino = £1.75
  • Can of Coke = 45p
  • Loaf of bread = 35p
  • Chicken breast fillet = £3.15
  • Beef fillet = £4.50
  • Taxi fare (5km) = £1

Turkey - Turkish lira (TRY)

It was only a year ago that Turkey’s currency crisis hit global headlines.

The Turkish lira has since steadied, but the currency continues to experience broad movements which has seen the pound make gains this year.

Now is the time to take advantage and get more lira for your money. GBP/TRY is lower than a year ago, but still up on January’s levels.

Turkey gets a mixed rep, but the major cities are not only safe but beautiful. The weather is consistently good, and large properties are surprisingly affordable for expats.
  • Meal out for one = £3.60 no-frills, £13 mid-range 3-course for two
  • Beer = £2.60 per bottle
  • Cappuccino = £1.50
  • Can of Coke = 55p
  • Loaf of bread = 35p
  • Chicken breast fillet = £3.05
  • Beef fillet = £8.85
  • Taxi fare (5km) = £2.15

Argentina - Argentine peso (ARS)

It’s almost impossible to think about big currency movements in 2019 without mentioning Argentina.

The Argentine peso has seen significant losses since the beginning of the year, with August seeing the peso fall to a record low against the US dollar.

But not all bad news is bad news for everyone.

At the start of the year, £1 would get you 47 pesos. With the current GBP/ARS exchange rate at 0.015, £1 will exchange for 68 pesos.

While prices are not like-for-like between the UK and Argentina, you’ll still find most things slightly less expensive and some items, like meat, alcohol, transportation and eating out, considerably cheaper:
  • Meal out for one = £5 no-frills, £18 mid-range 3-course for two
  • Beer = £1.50 per bottle
  • Cappuccino = £1.50
  • Can of Coke = 87p
  • Loaf of bread = 80p
  • Chicken breast fillet = £3.15
  • Beef fillet = £4.50
  • Taxi fare (5km) = £1.70

Iceland - Icelandic krona (ISK)

Continuing a trend seen for much of the past year, the Icelandic krona has been tumbling due to Iceland’s inflation concerns, as well as a sharply slowing tourism industry and the collapse of airline service WOW Air.

Iceland is a Nordic country of gorgeous, sparsely populated scenery and a uniquely Scandinavian cuisine.

The cost of living is comparable with that of the UK, but a lower tax rate makes the country appealing for tourists and expats by effectively increasing the amount of disposable income.
  • Meal out for one = £16 no-frills, £77 mid-range 3-course for two
  • Beer = £6.50 per bottle
  • Cappuccino = £3.60
  • Can of Coke = £2
  • Loaf of bread =  £2.20
  • Chicken breast fillet = £12.60
  • Beef fillet = £19.85
  • Taxi fare (5km) = £9.70
If you’re planning a move abroad and want to make the most of your money we’re here to help. Give us a call on +44 (0) 20 7847 9400 or to find out more.

*All rates quoted are interbank. Please note that we are unable to transfer ARS or ISK, but we do transfer more than forty other currencies.
Currencies Direct

Currencies Direct

Currencies Direct is one of Europe's leading non-bank providers of currency exchange and international payment services. Since we were formed in 1996, we've maintained our focus on providing innovative foreign exchange and international currency transfer services to corporations of all sizes, online sellers and private individuals. We have also expanded our services to provide dynamic and pioneering "business to business" solutions to help companies, tier 2/3 banks and other non-bank financial institutions to process their international payments. Our headquarters are in the City of London (United Kingdom) and we have operations in continental Europe, Africa, Asia, and the United States. Currencies Direct is jointly owned by private equity firms Palamon Capital Partners and Corsair Capital.

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