SWIFT Currency Conversion


What exchange rates do Starling use for inbound Non-GBP SWIFT payments? Are they published anywhere? I’m guessing that Starling will automatically convert to GBP?

Any fees? I’m expecting a SWIFT payment from the US.

If someone could clarify.



In case anyone is interested in the answer…

Starling CS have confirmed that the Mastercard exchange rates (fee free) will be used when converting incoming international SWIFT bank transfers to GBP.

Very good news for me as I receive 4-5 transfers from the US each year and Barclays always used to rip me off with a terrible FX rate and a fixed fee each time as well!

Receiving international payments


Starling has since contacted me to apologise for providing incorrect information.

Any incoming international bank transfer (Non-GBP) to your Starling bank account will actually be subject to the standard NatWest foreign exchange rates.

I assume NatWest must be handling incoming international payments for Starling.

Receiving international payments

Thanks for letting us know.


This is useful for me to know as I receive euro payments.


Also got this from CS last year.
Is this still the case? Not a great rate…


As far as I’m aware, they still use NatWest for inbound SWIFT (with NatWest daily FX rates).

The situation may have changed though…

@patrick Can you clarify what the current setup is? Thanks.


Hey @Ben and @minimim, right now for incoming Euro Swift payments, we are applying a Starling rate, to covert it to GBP.

The rate is not currently published, but you can contact us via the app to find out if needed.

An FAQ is being prepared to clarify this and make it more visible. Hope this makes sense.


Opaque is probably an understatement… :wink:

How will EUR <> GBP (for example) exchange work once Starling does multi-currency accounts?


This is a good question @minimim. Multi currency accounts are important to us, so as soon as we are ready to launch, we will answer the question.
We’ve still got a few things to work through :grinning:


I would assume it would depend if payment by SCT/SCTinst, SWIFT, Card, Cheque, Euro BACS, etc. Maybe different exchange rates (i.e. incorporating different costs) will apply to some payment methods?


I am really excited at the prospect of my Starling account becoming multi-currency…:grinning:


Is there any reason why Starling is so secretive about the rate? How often does the rate change?


@MIROW I suppose im thinking more of transfer between different currency accounts within Starling rather than conversion on transfer into Starling.
Much cleaner for my purposes to hold a Euro balance and convert as needed.


That is what I would like, to keep a €uro balance


I got a swift payment in euros recently. The conversion rate was about 2% below mid-market, plus some intermediary took a 30 eur fee. Came to 200 eur total, vs 48 eur if I’d run it through transferwise. Starling is pretty competitive for sending money so I was surprised that it’s so expensive to receive money.


The account is not really fit for this purpose.
I’ve been holding out for the Euro account, but this doesn’t sound like it will be available to everyone:


Euro account

This will initially be available to existing customers who have an enduring relationship to a European country or who travel to Europe for prolonged periods of time and later launch as a domestic Euro account in Ireland.