Currency & Credit Cards
The basic unit of currency in Scotland and throughout the Uk is Sterling which is based upon 100 units or pennies. Coins in circulation are 1p, 2p, 5p, 10p, 20p, 50p, and £1, with 100p to the pound. There are £1 notes circulating in Scotland but the £1 coin is now more common. £1 notes have been discontinued in England. Scottish banks such as the Royal Bank of Scotland, Bank of Scotland and Clydesdale Bank issue their own sterling notes which are legal tender throughout the UK, although occasionally you will find reluctance to have these accepted should you take them to England.
Traveller's cheques are accepted in most city outlets but occasionally these might prove difficult to use in smaller establishments located in outlying areas, especially if the traveller's cheque is more than £20. In the north or more remote west be sure to obtain cash, especially before the weekend when banks are closed. Banks are open Monday to Saturday morning and in most cases later on Thursdays. Bureau de Changes are found in larger towns only and have longer opening hours than banks.
Credit cards are widely accepted with Visa and Mastercard the most established. Small hotels, restaurants and B&Bs in the north might not be equipped to accept credit cards so cash will be required. Filling stations almost always accept credit cards. Using your credit card to obtain money from a bank's outside cash dispenser is a simple and often cost effective method, depending on the exchange rate at the time. This avoids the double fee paid on obtaining and cashing travellers cheques. It is worth ensuring you know your pin (personal identification number). Cash dispensers are found throughout Scotland.
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