Leftover Currency: Brits Have £1.8 Billion Hidden Away in 'That' Drawer

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British households have an average of £65 pounds worth of foreign coins and leftover travel money tucked away. Most of it not being used at all.

People think their old currency is worthless, but then it turns out it's worth over £100 pounds.

'The travel drawer,' that is how it's commonly referred to in many British households. It contains old travel documents, holiday brochures, family pictures and ... cash. Those foreign coins and banknotes left over from our holiday many years ago. Research by the London-based FX firm Leftover Currency Ltd finds that each British household, on average, has £65 pounds worth of unused travel money in its drawers. The 27.1 million UK households together own £1.8 billion pounds worth of leftover foreign coins and notes.

Based on a sample of 3,000 customers, the Leftover Currency research shows which currencies Brits are most likely to find in their drawers. Top of the list are the currencies one would expect: Euros and US dollars. Swiss francs complete the top-3. But then the list becomes more unexpected. Not fewer than five pre-Euro currencies are in the top-10 of currencies most held in British drawers: Deutschmarks, Spanish pesetas, French francs, Italian lire and Irish pounds.

Contrary to what most people think, these old pre-Euro currencies are not worthless. In many cases they can still be redeemed for Euros at the central bank in the country of origin. For some of the pre-Euro currencies the exchange deadline has expired. This is the case for the French franc, the Greek drachma, the Italian lira and the Finnish Mark. However all of the pre-Euro currencies, including the expired ones, can still be exchanged at https://www.leftovercurrency.com/.

The owner of Leftover Currency, Mario Van Poppel explains: "Many people don't realise what the old currency in their drawers is worth. At Leftover Currency we exchange both coins and notes, including the pre-Euro currencies and withdrawn banknotes from outside the Eurozone. It's very common that people think their old currency is worthless, but then it turns out it's worth more than £100 pounds. I would advise anyone with a travel drawer to explore what treasures might be hidden inside."

Anyone with leftover foreign coins and old travel money can look up the value of each individual banknote and coin on Leftover Currency's website, where they can also be exchanged: https://www.leftovercurrency.com/

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Mario Van Poppel
since: 02/2012
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