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Scottish Money in London - Is it worth the hassle?

Inverurie, United...
Level Contributor
371 posts
147 reviews
Scottish Money in London - Is it worth the hassle?

I'm a very regular visitor to London and my experience last week was that the indigenous British serving in food outlets (which I 🤔 think I counted on one hand) never batted an eye at the Scottish notes. This was not my impression with however at a guesstimate of 95% of staff serving in food outlets who appeared to have English as a second language ( many who gave me the impression of very poor English skills)

Hugely frustrating and insulting when it's in my view appears to be a lack of training of the primarily immigrant workforce if my experience is reflective of the norm.

In all the years I've been going South I've had the odd occasion the notes have been questioned but I often pay with contactless in recent times. Just so happens I had a couple of hundred cash to take with me this time so the change in attitude, understanding, inclusion and acceptance was stark and quite shocking.

I go to London to enjoy myself so I'm certainly not up for a battle everytime I fancy a coffee!

I had always thought previously Scottish currency couldn't be refused but other threads made me think differently and that was also in the back of my mind.

So glad my husband wasn't with me ; it would put him into 💫 orbit!

What do others do when it's turned down?

94 replies to this topic
London, United...
Level Contributor
4,692 posts
354 reviews
1. Re: Scottish Money in London - Is it worth the hassle?

Deal with it in a far more coherent and less racist manner than you I imagine.

The post has been reported

Kent
Level Contributor
1,179 posts
270 reviews
2. Re: Scottish Money in London - Is it worth the hassle?

It's not fun!

Scottish notes arent that welcome south of Carlisle in my experience, OK some shops will accept them, but they will struggle to do anything other than bank the notes because other customers won't want them in their change (coins don't matter). You can't change it at a bank - you have to pay it into an account and make a cash withdrawal too, and as banks close branches at an alarming pace that becomes more challenging by the day.

All in all I'd say carry as few notes as you can and use plastic.

Rutland, United...
Level Contributor
7,626 posts
79 reviews
3. Re: Scottish Money in London - Is it worth the hassle?

Scottish banknotes are legal currency but not legal tender, not even in Scotland. Google the technical difference between the two terms if you’re interested.

Personally I think you’re over reacting. Scottish banknotes are not often seen so I am not surprised they were treated with suspicion. And, not being frequently seen, it makes it harder to judge what is a genuine note and what is a fake. Indeed, in our local Coop there is a sign up saying they do not accept Scottish notes because there are a number of fake Scottish notes in circulation. Perhaps the shopworkers who refused you had been similarly warned, perhaps too the non native workers were more attentive to what their bosses were telling them.

United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4,048 posts
4. Re: Scottish Money in London - Is it worth the hassle?

Ignoring the racist theme, the shops are under no obligation to accept Scottish notes.

Edited: 3:43 am, September 04, 2018
Inverurie, United...
Level Contributor
371 posts
147 reviews
5. Re: Scottish Money in London - Is it worth the hassle?

Yes I agree its definitely not fun.

I think you're right I'm 100% put off taking notes South.

Sad but thank goodness for plastic!

United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4,048 posts
6. Re: Scottish Money in London - Is it worth the hassle?

As an aside you might want to explain the situation to your husband so that he doesn’t end up unintentionally embarrassing himself.

London
Destination Expert
for London
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24,039 posts
77 reviews
7. Re: Scottish Money in London - Is it worth the hassle?

Cash. How quaint.

Hampshire, England.
Level Contributor
4,447 posts
13 reviews
8. Re: Scottish Money in London - Is it worth the hassle?

"Deal with it in a far more coherent and less racist manner than you I imagine."

Not a racist post at all (a much misused term and some people seem to see it around every corner), I have also found that immigrant workers especially in pubs don't have a lot of understanding of what they are supposed to be selling, in one pub two of them didn't know what a pint of bitter was and that was before we got to a pint of bitter shandy!!!!!

Inverurie, United...
Level Contributor
371 posts
147 reviews
9. Re: Scottish Money in London - Is it worth the hassle?

That's the thing I guess you have a point carrying cash is probably so old hat now..

India
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for Air Travel
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5,851 posts
174 reviews
10. Re: Scottish Money in London - Is it worth the hassle?

Blomk, I can understand your frustration and for the sake of getting into situations that your have encountered I would either just change the notes as normal at your local branch, or even at a branch in London.

I have done this with my Scottish bank whilst 'down South' without any problems. Therefore not getting into any 'battles'. with anyone over payments with Scottish notes. As you have found out they can and are refused to be taken as legal tender.

Really its not worth the hassle of getting stressed about it and it only takes a few minutes to get English notes

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