We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Cash in Northern Ireland

Pleasant Prairie...
Level Contributor
12 posts
11 reviews
Save Topic
Cash in Northern Ireland

We will be in Northern Ireland for a very short time and are trying to decide how much cash we may need. We will be leaving Donegal early one morning and heading to Belfast for the night. We would like to stop up at Giant's Causeway and/or the rope bridge if that's not too ambitious of a day. We will have the majority of the second day to spend in Belfast before heading to Dublin to catch our flight the next morning. Do you think most places in the areas mentioned will accept credit cards? Is an ATM the best location to get cash? I've read there are different types of pounds, but I imagine if we get cash from an ATM we will be ok to use what we got.

We're not sure what we'll be doing yet in Belfast, probably either a Black Taxi Tour or HOHO and the Titanic dockyard and museum. Do most pubs/Restaurants accept credit cards in Belfast? I want to minimize the trips to the ATM if possible.

Thank you for your help!

18 replies to this topic
Pewsey, United...
Level Contributor
4,730 posts
297 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Cash in Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland, like the rest of the UK, uses the Pound Sterling. What may be confusing is that banks in Northern Ireland can issue their own banknotes, so they look different but are the same currency. (Banks in Scotland also issue their own notes, and Bank of England notes circulate freely across the UK)

Lots of ATMs, cards widely accepted...

Lisburn, United...
Level Contributor
402 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Cash in Northern Ireland

Yes Northern Irish banks are allowed by the central bank (Bank of England) to print their own pound sterling banknotes these are worth the same as the Bank of England bank notes, the four banks in Northern Ireland that print their own notes are Ulster bank first trust bank Danske Bank and Bank of Ireland all these bank notes circulate with the normal Bank of England banknotes in Northern Ireland, occasionally you might come across the odd scottish bank note (as the same applies in Scotland) just be sure to remember its all British pounds and all worth the same the coinage (pounds and its subdivision pence ) is the same throughout the UK.

Belfast, United...
Level Contributor
3,096 posts
28 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Cash in Northern Ireland

When spending your cash if requiring change of £5 or more request Bank of England notes. Try not to be left with NI notes by the end if your visit.

Lisburn, United...
Level Contributor
402 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Cash in Northern Ireland

Banks will swap your left over NI notes to Bank of England notes at the normal cashier desks as well

Comber, United...
Level Contributor
454 posts
76 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Cash in Northern Ireland

Assuming that the OP is heading back across the Atlantic there will be no requirement to change notes to Bank of England. Almost everywhere will accept credit cards so that is probably your best bet and take out some cash for the small transactions/remote areas with connnection problems/tax evaders and tips (if you wish to tip of course)

CP

Western Ireland...
Destination Expert
for Sligo, Charlottesville, Virginia, County Donegal
Level Contributor
15,684 posts
264 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Cash in Northern Ireland

I just counted about 75 Pound Sterling (N.I. Bank) in reserve from my recent visit up in County Fermanagh..Should I hold onto it for visit this Summer?

Thank you in advance...

Kesh_grammy

Pleasant Prairie...
Level Contributor
12 posts
11 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Cash in Northern Ireland

Thank you all for your help! I think I understand, as long as we have a pound sterling, regardless of which bank produced it, the currency will be accepted. We will be heading back to the states, so our goal would be to have as little cash as possible at the end of the visit, so I think I'm ok if it isn't Bank of England notes.

Does anyone know if credit cards are accepted for entrance to the Giant's Causeway or the Carrick-a-Rede bridge? I've looked at their websites and I'm not seeing anything noted, unless we decide to purchase online ahead of time. Is it too ambitious to try to drive early morning from Donegal to Belfast with a stop at Giant's Causeway and/or the Carrick-a-Rede bridge? Drive time online seems reasonable but I've read many times in these forums that the actual drive is often much longer in real life.

Also, are there toll roads in Northern Ireland? Do gas stations generally accept credit cards?

Thanks again to everyone for your help!! We leave in a few days and we can't wait!

Stirling, United...
Destination Expert
for Stirling
Level Contributor
14,275 posts
7 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Cash in Northern Ireland

There are no toll roads in Northern Ireland, there are in the Republic.

https://www.nidirect.gov.uk/articles/cross-b…

All legal petrol stations accept cards (there may be a few that take cards but not cash).

Amsterdam, The...
Destination Expert
for Amsterdam
Level Contributor
38,867 posts
79 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Cash in Northern Ireland

As in the posts above that have already answered your question i.e. that cards are accepted almost everywhere. Certainly at petrol stations and tourist attractions like the bridge.

Belfast, United...
Level Contributor
3,096 posts
28 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Cash in Northern Ireland

"We will be heading back to the states, so our goal would be to have as little cash as possible at the end of the visit, so I think I'm ok if it isn't Bank of England notes."

On the contrary any cash you have left should only be in Bank of England notes.

Reply to: Cash in Northern Ireland
Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted