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THE ULTIMATE TRAVEL MONEY GUIDE TO EUROPE | Countries that don't use the Euro

19th June 2023

Of course, there’s more to Europe than just the Eurozone, so chances are you’ll need some local foreign currency for the destination you’re visiting!

We’ve got you covered for that too.

Popular Western European Countries That Don't Use The Euro

While you can get away with just having the Euro on hand for much of Western Europe, if you’re planning to visit the United Kingdom (UK) or Switzerland during your travels (and often many group tours and cruise itineraries will stop off in these locations!), you’ll need to also take with you some Great British Pounds (GBP) – which are also known as Pound Sterling – as well as Swiss Francs (CHF). 


Travel Money for the UK

The UK has so much to offer!

For history buffs, there are medieval castles dotting the Scottish highlands, as well as of course, Stone Henge. For the Royalists, there’s of course a rich history of the monarchy in England, the crown jewels, and Buckingham Palace. More of a nature lover? The UK has that too – from the fairy isles of Scotland, to the Forest of Dean, to Dover Heights. And for the pop culture fanatics, from Beatlemania to Harry Potter, there’s a lot to explore in the UK.

If you’re lucky enough to visit the enchanting UK, here is a budget breakdown of how much money you’ll need to take…

Great British Pound (GBP), also known as Pound Sterling.
You’ll need to exchange AUD to GBP for your trip to the UK!

The pound sterling is the official United Kingdom currency, used in all four of the countries that form the UK:

• England

• Scotland

• Wales

• Northern Ireland

Important note: If your holiday includes a detour into the Republic of Ireland, you’ll also need some euros (they won’t accept pounds here, no matter how charming you are).

You’ll also want to exchange your Australian dollars to pounds if you’re packing bags for:

• The British Antarctic Territory

• Falkland Islands

• Gibraltar

• Guernsey

• The Isle of Man (not as sexy as it sounds)

• Jersey

• South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands (not as edible as they sound)

• Tristan da Cunha

Coffee: £3 (about $5.60 AUD) – for a regular cappuccino.

Water: £1.10 (about $2.05 AUD) –  for a standard water bottle.

Beer: £4.30 (about $8 AUD) – for a pint in a pub.

Food: £15 (about $28 AUD) –  fish ‘n’ chips.

Fine Dining: £60 (about $112 AUD) – to dine like the Queen.

Local Transport: £2.50 (about $4.70 AUD) – London Tube of course!

Budget: Around £40-50 GBP ($80-$100 AUD) per day.
EG: Free hostel brekky, 1x cheap meal, supermarket snacks, train ticket.

Moderate: Around £75-100 GBP ($150-$200 AUD) per day.
EG: 2x cheap meals, train ticket, entry to the London Eye.

Luxury: Around £100-200 GBP ($200-$396 AUD) per day.
EG: 3x restaurant meals, double decker bus, Harry Potter Studio Tour.

The UK is very card friendly, but you’ll still want some cash on hand for parking, taxis, small purchases etc. We recommend loading up a Currency Pass prepaid travel card with pound sterling (GBP) to use for everyday without incurring exorbitant credit card fees. Then, have some cash on hand too for other day-to-day purchases!

ATMs are easy to find as well – from shops to subway stations.

Very rare, unless you want to tip your top hat.

The UK is quite a safe place for you and your travel money. Just be wary of small roads with fast cars. and the cunning Artful Dodger.

• Scoring a train pass early will save you heaps.

• Careful, as some restaurants include a service fee.

• Pennies melt at 1,085°C (it’s just illegal to try).

• Don’t use too many coins at once.

• A Travel Money Oz Currency Pass can swipe you onto London tubes!

Want more info?

Read this blog for how much money you need to travel the United Kingdom.

Travel Money for Switzerland

Did you know Switzerland is home to four languages?

The Swiss speak German, French, Italian, and Romansh, thanks to the neighbouring countries of Germany, France, and Italy! Making this picturesque alpine country a perfect addition to your European travels.

If you’re planning on a summer hike through alpine meadows and powder-blue water, or instead go skiing through the alps in winter, here’s the travel money you’ll need for Switzerland…

A frequently asked question we get is “can I use Euros in Switzerland?”

However, despite having Euro-using neighbours, the answer is no.

While yes some establishments may take the Euro, the exchange rate will likely be terrible and you’d be better off using the local currency.
Switzerland uses the Swiss Franc (CHF).

You’ll need to exchange AUD to Swiss Francs (CHF) for your trip to Switzerland!

Coffee: 4.80CHF (about $8 AUD) – for a regular cappuccino.

Water: 3.85CHF (about $6.20 AUD) –  for a standard water bottle.

Beer: 7CHF(about $11.60 AUD) – for a pint in a pub.

Food: 25CHF (about $41.45 AUD) –  raclette or rosti in Zurich.

Fine Dining: 100CHF (about $166 AUD) – three-course fondue in the alps.

Local Transport: 3.50CHF (about $5.80 AUD) – taking tram trips in Geneva.

Budget: Around 60CHF ($100 AUD) per day.
EG: Free hostel brekky, 1x cheap meal, supermarket snacks, tram ticket.

Moderate: Around 120CHF ($200 AUD) per day.
EG: 2x cheap meals, and a cruise in Lucerne.

Luxury: Around 200CHF ($330 AUD) per day.
EG: 1x restaurant meal, and a cable-car ride through Matterhorn Glacier Paradise.

Switzerland is very card-friendly, but it’s also wise to have some cash on hand – from self-serve cheese kiosks on the roadside, to transport, to parking, to cafes, to even some toilets charging 1CHF to use the bathroom, having Swiss Francs in cash is a wise move.

Plus, while many historical and scenic sites are free to enter, sometimes they have around a 10CHF entry fee – so it’s good to have on hand.

ATMs are easy to find as well – however don’t withdraw frequently (or with your credit card) as you’ll be hit with some intense fees.

There’s no obligation to tip in Switzerland as all service charges are included in published prices by law. However, rounding up is accepted – in this case leave it in cash on the table.

Switzerland is generally a pretty safe country to travel, but as always, exercise caution and be wary of pickpockets and keep your belongings close.

Switzerland can be on the pricier side for travellers, but here are some tips if you’re visiting Switzerland on a budget!

• Go veggie – meat is expensive in Switzerland, so opting for veggie meals helps save your wallet. Switzerland makes this easy with all the delicious cheese and chocolate!

• Look into the Swiss Travel Pass and city tourism cards – many cities have a city pass for discounted or free admission for museums and sightseeing, and sometimes even transport!

• The water in Switzerland is safe to drink (just look at the stunning glacial lakes!), so take a reusable water bottle and fill up.

Ready to head to Switzerland?

Exchange AUD to Swiss Franc (CHF) at Travel Money Oz today!

Travel Money Advice

Why do you need foreign currency?

Okay, say you’ve figured out where in Europe you’re heading.

You’ve booked your flights and accommodation, got your visas and vaccines.

Everything’s good to go, right?


You need some spending money! Those delicious pizzas in Napoli aren’t gonna pay for themselves.

So, that’s where travel money comes in.

What is foreign currency exchange?

Currency Exchange is the process of converting one currency into another currency, typically done for international travel.
For example, if you’re an Aussie travelling to Istanbul, you’ll be exchanging Australian Dollars into Turkish Lira for your trip!

Want some more info? 

So… why should you exchange money before you go travelling?

The main reason is for safety and peace of mind. In many places around the world, counterfeit cash is a big problem that can get you into a lot of trouble. By exchanging your money beforehand you can rest assured that your cash is 100% legitimate!

It also means you’ve got some money as soon as you arrive. Which, let’s face it, travel can be exhausting and you often arrive excited, but tired and hungry. If you’ve got money on you then you can immediately grab a bite to eat and a taxi to where you’re going!

Having foreign currency before you go means you can avoid hefty airport exchange rates, fees, surcharges and commission.


If you’ve exchanged your money to AUD beforehand with us, you’ll know just how much you have to spend and can work within that budget. Also, our friendly experts can give some great advice, so don’t be afraid to ask!

When to use foreign cash, when to use Currency Pass, and when to use credit cards.

We recommend taking both cash and card to travel, wherever you’re headed!

After all, you don’t want to keep all your eggs in one basket.

A good rule of thumb is to have some cash for small purchases (like coffee, local markets, and tipping), a prepaid travel card (like our Currency Pass) for everyday spending in card-based countries, and keep your personal credit cards handy for security deposits (for hotels and car rentals etc. but remember they incur additional surcharges and fees for all international purchases!).

What denomination of currency should I get?

  • Have smaller denominations for street vendors, markets etc.
  • Avoid exchanging at airports, hotels, and restaurants as these can often have hidden fees and charges.

Why should I get a Currency Pass prepaid travel card?

When you get a Travel Money Oz Currency Pass you can lock in your exchange rate, so you don’t have to worry about market fluctuations, and will know exactly what you’re spending.

If you do end up underestimating what you’ll be spending and need a top up, you can reload your card via the app with ease! You can use the app to manage your card online, reload, and transfer between currencies, so it could prove the most convenient way to keep your balance topped up during your trip.

This comes in handy if you’re bouncing around different countries! For example, for most of Latin America you’ll be loading United States Dollars (USD), but for certain countries (like Cuba) you might load Euros (EUR) instead, while other places (like South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands) Pound Sterling (GBP) would be preferred!

Also, if you try to make a payment in a currency in which you don’t have enough funds, your card will automatically convert some money you have stored on the card in a different currency.

Currency Pass Tip – Select the Local Currency!

Always select the LOCAL  currency when paying by card or withdrawing from an ATM!
Merchants and retailers might offer you to pay in your own currency, but this might include hidden charges, fees, and a not-so-competitive exchange rate which can cost you more. If you choose the local currency, you’ll be exchanging for the best exchange rate Travel Money Oz can provide at the time. Read about it in our blog - Top Tips On Avoiding International Bank Fees.

Ready to get a travel money currency prepaid travel card?

Good call! We might be biased, but we think Currency Pass is the best travel money card of all prepaid travel cards!

You can buy a currency card online and check travel card exchange rates here.

You can also reload travel cards too!

If you want more info about our travel money card fees, check out our PDS here.

Travel Money Budgeting and Money Management Tips

How to get the best rates at a Foreign Currency Exchange

Do your research!

  • It’s really important to keep in mind the rates, fees, and charges that will be involved in the process -to make sure you get the most bang for your buck.
  • It’s also crucial you research the currency or currencies you’ll need for the destinations you’ll be travelling to.
  • On top of that, making sure you have enough money to last the entirety of your trip, and then some, by creating a travel budget!

How to avoid international banking fees.

When you're travelling overseas, using your regular debit or credit bank card to manage your travel money often seems like the easiest option. But all too often, this convenience comes at a price.

Discover the sneaky international bank fees you can incur while travelling, and how to avoid them, so you can put your cash toward more important things – like souvenirs!

How to make most of your foreign currency while on holiday

We all love to treat ourselves while we’re on holiday. After all, it’s what we’ve been saving hard for all this time. A little splurging on souvenirs and dining can quickly add up.

But there are a few things you can do before and during your holiday to make sure you’re getting the best bang for your buck. Read this article to learn more!

How to keep your money safe while travelling

So how can you protect yourself from becoming a target of pickpocketing and money scamming? A combination of common sense and preparation, of course!

Keep your money safe during your travels with these 20 tips.

Understanding ATM Fees

Aussies love using ATMs, but this article isn’t a ATM Appreciation post.. ATM use can come at a big cost!! Make sure you’re informed about all the fees involved so you can make the best decisions for yourself and limit unnecessary costs.

Well friend, we’ve made it easy for you.

There are two parts for your travel budget.

Firstly, there are things you need to take of before your trip – like flights, accommodation, visas, vaccinations, and all that jazz.

Then, there’s the money you’ll be spending while actually abroad – think food, transport, tipping, souvenirs, and experiences.

After all, if you’re travelling all the way to Greece for an island-hopping adventure, you’ll probably want some travel money to buy those ferry tickets!

Conveniently… we have this guide on how much money you need to travel Europe!

From example itineraries to our nifty (and free!) holiday budget planning tool, this blog is basically a step-by-step guide to make creating a travel budget easy.

Why exchange with Travel Money Oz for your European holiday?

That’s a good question!

It’s always important to research the businesses you’re engaging with.

Here are some of our key pointers:

No Commission, no fees, no hidden nasies.

We wouldn’t want them either. So, what you see is what you get.

We will beat any local written quote by at least $1*

We know having the best rate possible means you get the most spending money overseas. That’s why we offer our Best Price Guarantee! Find the T&Cs here, but the gist is that if you give us a written quote, we’ll beat it by $1.

Protection against rate fluctuations.

The rates can change quicker than Aussie weather. It can be stressful trying to guesstimate the right time to exchange money. Which is why we’ve built in protection! If you see the exchange rate gets better within 14 days of exchanging with us, we’ll refund you the difference.* Learn more.

Always have top currencies in stock.

We’re not here to waste your time. There’s nothing more annoying than taking time out of your day to buy something and they don’t have stock. But we will ALWAYS have our top currencies in stock!
• United States Dollar (USD)
• Euro (EUR)
• Great British Pound (GBP)
• New Zealand Dollar (NZD)
• Japanese Yen (JPY)
• Thai Baht (THB)
• Singapore Dollar (SGD).

And if we don’t have the currency available in store? Well, we’ll give you up to $100*.

Pre-order rare currencies!

We also know that maybe you want to travel off the beaten path. Well, we stock over 60+ currencies! Head to your local Travel Money Oz store and ask a friendly expert what’s the best option for you. If it’s a rare currency that we stock, we should be able to get it in for you, or it might even be the case that it’s a currency you can only get in-destination, and another currency might get you better rates when you’re there (for example, Bolivian Boliviano – it’s better to take United States Dollars and trade once you’re in Bolivia!).

By travellers, for travellers!

Last but definitely not least, we’re experts in all things travel and money, and are travellers ourselves so we can give the best advice!

Surely this blog is proof of that, right?

We’re in the business of travel money because we know and love travel, so we’re here to help make it all easier for you – especially first timers experiencing large sums of cash for the first time!

Come and have a chat with us in-store for your upcoming trip, we’d love to help out.

We also have these helpful blogs and World Currency Guides if you’re a bit more introverted and would rather learn online (don’t worry, we get it).

What should I do with my leftover foreign currency?

If you have anything left over after your great European adventure, you can sell it back to Travel Money Oz on return!

You can either trade it back for Aussie Dollars in cash or nominate your bank for a transfer.

If you have funds left over on your card you can either:

  • Cash out for flat fee of $10AUD straight into your bank account.
  • Use the money as you would in Australia (by transferring to AUD) and run the balance down to zero (on groceries etc).

Any leftover coins, these are not legal tender in Australia, so if you haven’t spent it overseas and don’t want to keep them as souvenirs, you can donate them to UNICEF in our Travel Money Oz stores!

There you have it!

Your Travel Money for European adventure sorted.

That wraps up all the most important info (that we can think of at least!) that you’ll need to know when it comes to foreign currency in Europe.

All that’s left to do us come and see us to grab yours!


Travel Money Oz has sought to ensure that the information is true and correct at the time of publication. Prices, details and services are subject to change without notice, and Travel Money Oz accepts no responsibility or liability for any such changes, including any loss resulting from any action taken or reliance made by you on any information provided. Daily Cost: All prices are approximations. Your costs may differ depending on where you go, where you shop, and their individual factors. Daily Budget: Costs are estimated per person and do not include accommodation. Terms and conditions apply to Best Price Guarantee, Rate Guard and Cash Commitment. See for more details.