Buy or Sell? Which Currency Exchange Column Should You Look At?

Those who are about to embark on their maiden voyage, it’s likely to find themselves standing in front of the money exchanger store, squinting their eyes and trying to do quick math but end up more confused.

And for the others, you may receive text messages like this in the middle of the day, “Jie, which column should I look at? Is this a good rate for Japanese Yen?” and “Hey, where did you exchange your Korean Won on your previous trip? What’s the rate?”

Well, let’s just say, you and I, the seasoned travellers are not your round-the-clock currency converters.

However, here’s a quick guide on deciphering the money exchange board, please bookmark this.

Scenario 1: I’m going to Europe and I want to change $1000 Singapore dollars to Euros.

Here you are presented with two columns: Buy and Sell. If you want to change $1000 SGD to Euros, which column should you look at? Now, you are “buying” the Euro with SGD, which makes you the buyer and the money changer, the seller.

Solution: Look at ‘We Sell’ column

  We Buy We Sell
US Dollar 0.7241 0.7215
Euro 0.6596 0.6565

(SGD$1 = EUR 0.6565)

British Pounds 0.5611

(GBP 0.5611 = SGD$1)



Here’s how to calculate:

SGD $1000 * 0.6565 = EUR 656.50

You’re getting EUR 656.50 per SGD$1000.

Scenario 2: I have a thousand British pounds and I want to change to Singapore Dollars. 

Now, you become the “seller” of your British pounds and the money exchanger becomes the buyer.

Solution: Look at “We Buy” column

Here’s how to calculate:

GBP 1000 / 0.5611 = SGD$ 1,782

But what if you have completely forgotten your basic mathematics and you just want a fuss-free solution? Then the easiest way is to search for the rates online. But there will always be a slight difference between the rates you see online and the rates available at the retail money exchanger.

Where can I get the best money exchange rates in Singapore?

It’s well-known among the travelling community that these 3 locations offer relatively competitive rates in Singapore:

  • The Arcade at Raffles Place
  • Mustafa
  • People’s Park Complex

But to save yourself time and the hassle of carrying around large amounts of cash just to exchange foreign currency before your trip, then Changi Recommends FX is your best bet!

You can order your foreign currency online and collect them at the airport! Simply click here to create the currency exchange order and you’re all set for your vacation!

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