Currency Exchange Rates
Our business consists in making high quality musical instruments, not in their delivery nor in the currency exchange. When you buy one of our products, you not only have to pay for the instrument, but you also have additional costs as taxes, shipping, insurance, currency exchange etc. from other organizations.
In some cases, those additional costs can be reduced and so does the total amount you have to pay. We try to find some alternatives and offer to you different possibilities so that you can compare and choose the most appropriate in each case.
The different possibilities have a common characteristic: our benefit is the same with all of them. So, the difference in the additional costs have as a consequence the different total price for you.
Regarding the currency, we have to say that our company is British and our first price list is in GBP (UK has not adopted the Euro). We have a workshop is Spain and we can have some incomes in euros to pay our Spanish costs without exchanging pounds to euros, but we still have to change part of the money to pounds and send it to Gt. Britain where we do pay fees, taxes, etc.
Since we moved the workshop (not the company) from Bradford (UK) to Toledo (Spain) we thought that it could be interesting for our customers to send their products directly from Toledo avoiding duplicated shipping costs and offering the possibility to pay in euros, which can save in currency exchange costs.
This has certainly allowed us to freeze the prices but has turned out to be a common subject in the emails from customers that compare our prices in pounds and in euros considering the exchange rates published by some companies and banks in the newspapers or through the Internet.
Following is the explanation why we cannot use those exchange rates published in mass media and why we use our own ones.
When we calculate our exchange rates, the main reason for the discrepancy with the rate published by the exchange companies, banks and newspapers is that they usually publish only one rate, an average of the buying and selling prices. Actually if you buy pounds paying with euros you have a different rate than if you want to sell pounds cashing in euros.
The mid-market rate indicates the value of a currency that is not weighted towards buying or selling. "Buy" and "sell" rates include overheads and profit margins that are independently set by foreign exchange providers; their rates can vary a lot and will always differ from the mid-market rate.
Moreover, the newspapers and other mass media publish the inter-banking rates, that is, the price that the central bank of a country has paid to the central bank of another country. People and companies cannot get such prices, and for them the exchange is always more expensive (It is as if they published the price of the eggs and tomatoes as paid to the farmer. Of course you cannot get in the shops the eggs and tomatoes at that published price.)
Source of information
Because there are many currency markets all over the world, specific rates will vary from market to market. For example, prices in the New York and London exchanges markets generally follow each other, but are very seldom exactly the same.
Credit card rates
If you decide to pay with a credit card, you must know that the exchange rate applied by the card company is also different (worse for you) than published in those mass-media. The credit card editor applies an exchange rate with a typical profit of 3%. Different credit cards organizations apply different rates. The bank that issues your credit card also applies its own commission. So your final cost will not be necessarily the same of other card holders.
Even more, credit card companies don't do the conversion when you pay but when the money is giving to the vendor. This can occur several days after and at a very different exchange rate.
Another reason for the discrepancy is that we do the conversion only three or four times a year and because the exchange rate is changing continuously, we take the average rate of the last month and use it for the next quarter.
In the end, everything is paid by the final customer, but some ways can be cheaper than others. We offer several alternatives so you can choose. For us, doesn't matter which one is selected, but you can be much happier with one of them.
Our piece of advice: ask to your bank how much is the exact total cost for you with the different alternatives that we offer, compare and use the best option, because the products that you will receive will be exactly the same.
The approximate exchange rates that we publish in this website have been calculated taking into consideration all the third-party commissions above. You shouldn't expect to pay an amount too different from the calculated with our exchange rate. In most cases you will pay a little less.
In any case, here is a link where you can have the mid-market rates in real time: www.xe.com. Use them only as an approximation.