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Thursday, 24 June 2010

European Residents save by paying Eurotunnel in Sterling

Today I decide to check with Eurotunnel for the prices to travel to the UK in my car and discovered that if I tell the company that I live in Europe it will cost me 17% more than if I say that I live in the UK.

I was looking for the price to travel from Calais to Folkestone in a standard non LPG car and not towing a trailer.

As I currently live in Spain when asked the question ‘Which country do you live in’ on not finding Spain in the drop down list I selected ‘Other country’. I was given a price in Euros.

I wanted to pay for the trip on my UK credit card and therefore wanted a price in sterling (GBP) so I decided to amend the country in which I live to the United Kingdom and obtained a price in £s.

What I found to my surprise was that if I paid in GBP, as a UK resident, and not in Euros as a European resident,  I made a saving of approximately 14.5%, based on the current exchange rate of £ = 1.20€. If the exchange rate was at £ = 1.15€ ,closer to the average over the last 3 months, the saving would have been 18%.

European residents paying in Euros are being made to pay more, between 17% and 22%! Why is this? Because Eurotunnel are using an exchange rate of closer to £ = 1.40€. How long ago since the exchange rate was that high!

Over a sample of various dates in June and July based on the same vehicle and at a travel time between 12 noon and 14:00 hrs the exchange rate used was £ = 1.404€.

The result of this exercise is that I strongly recommend to any UK Expats living in Europe who have a UK debit or credit card to tell Eurotunnel that they live in the United Kingdom when booking tickets to use the channel tunnel and pay by those.

It will save them a lot of money, anywhere between 18% and 14.5%!

Post Script, 06.07.10: the CoastRider newspaper picks up on this article, 'Eurotunnel makes costly conversion'

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