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Why are the USD and Euro prices higher than the GBP prices?

Kirkby Microwave is based in the UK, where the currency is the GBP(£). Despite this, a number of customers ask us to be quoted in $US (USD) or Euros(€). This increases our costs for a large number of reasons:

  1. First, you should understand that when one buys a currency, it always costs more than selling the currency. You will often see this in shops where currencies can be swapped. There's always a buy rate and a sell rate, as you will know if you ever exchange currency to go on holiday. You always pay more to buy a currency, and get less if you sell it. Sites like give a mid-market rate which is half-way between the buy and sell rates available to banks. These rates are not available to any companies.
  2. Exchange rates change by the second. Mostly the changes are small, but sometimes they are not. Fortunately XE supports Rate Alerts which we set to notify us if the exchange rate has moved up or down more than 5% from when we last set our prices.
  3. Every time there's a change in the exchange rate of more than 5% we have to re-calculate all prices. A spreadsheet helps, but with a lot of options on our kits, we need to re-calculate a lot of prices.
  4. Once we have re-calculated our prices, we need to update every non-GBP eBay auction, every PayPal price on our website, and every bank transfer rate on our website. This takes a lot of time, as we have many products each of which has several options, so we may need to update 1000 prices!
  5. Our bank charges us extra money if money is deposited into our account which is not GBP.
  6. PayPal charges us higher commission rates for non-GBP currencies.
  7. Non-GBP transactions cause us more accounting work.
  8. Many other reasons too - such as the time to write this webpage!

The following all increase our costs.

  1. eBay fees.
  2. PayPal fees. (When we sell on eBay, we have to charge extra to cover the eBay fees, which increases our PayPal fees too!)
  3. Both eBay and PayPal fees must be added to our shipping costs.
  4. Amazon fees. We can only sell on Amazon UK, and only have a small subset of our products on there. The fees are a little lower than the combined total of eBay and PayPal fees, so we are a little cheaper on Amazon than we are on eBay.
  5. Amazon UK charges the buyer a small amount for carriage. This only about one third of the price it costs us to ship the items, which are normally set by UPS.

So in summary, to get the best prices.

  1. Pay in GBP.
  2. Pay by bank transfer.

Kirkby Microwave Ltd is registered in England and Wales, company number 08914892. Registered office: Stokes Hall Lodge, Burnham Rd, Althorne, Essex, CM3 6DT.