A word About Scottish Banknotes
Scottish banknotes are NOT legal tender. They are accepted throughout Scotland and they may be accepted quite widely elsewhere in England and Wales, but outside the UK there is no certainty that they will (a) be accepted by bureaux de change, or that (b) that they will be exchanged at the same rate as Bank of England notes.
Advice from the Committee of Scottish Bankers
The majority of banknotes circulating in Scotland are issued by Scottish banks. Scottish notes circulate and are accepted quite freely in Scotland and, for the most part, they are also readily accepted in England & Wales, although branches of Scottish banks there may not issue them. However, you should not rely absolutely on Scottish notes being accepted outside Scotland and this is particularly true when travelling abroad. Our general advice would be not to carry large amounts of banknotes of any description and to make use of facilities such as travellers’ cheques, credit/debit cards and ATM cards for access to funds whilst abroad.
TA member experience
A recent TA thread concerned the current state of play with kantors in Poland. One respondent said that he “had a quick look at the exchange rates at Warsaw kantors that take Scottish notes (not all of them do) and they are not doing too badly – 4.95PLN for one Scotttish pound (5.14PLN for B of E)”.
The member who started the tread found a different situation in Krakow “Despite getting quotes for exchange at 20+ bureaux only 1 offered to exchange our Scottish currency at 4.40pln for one Scottish pound so we declined. none of the others would exchange. Our stay was fine and we did manage financially, we had credit/debit cards to pay for meals and hotel, got 500pln from ATM for tips and taxis etc. BUT we did see lots of lovely things to buy, especially amber jewellery, which if we had changed the Scottish currency we had taken we would have bought lots!”
Generally, advice is to change your cash in Poland but clearly, if it’s Scottish notes you intend changing, do it at home! Or change your Scottish notes to Bank of England before you leave.