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Food and drink prices?

Planning a trip later June next summer. Mostly the Highlands with a couple nights in Edinburgh. I know it is a
Pound to dollar conversion, but can anyone give me a rough estimate if meals and drinks are priced roughly similar to here in the states before the currency conversion? Thank you.

Posted by
4740 posts

I found that prices on Skye were more expensive than London prices. Prices vary widely depending on the standard. A takeaway pre-packaged sandwich, drink and a packet of crisps costs around £3 (meal deal) from a supermarket. A sandwich freshly made up and eaten in a deli or cafe will cost £6-8.

A burger and chips in a mid-priced restaurant will cost £10-13 and the same for a pasta dish. Steak and chips in a pub or restaurant will be £18-25 depending on the size and cut.

Fancier restaurants can be £50 a head. Wine in a restaurant will be mostly £20+ per bottle.

A cup of cappuccino will cost around £3. A breakfast pastry will cost £2-3. Wine in a pub will cost £4+ per glass, soft drinks £2+ and a pint of beer £4+.

Posted by
18869 posts

Are you asking whether a $30 dollar meal in the US might cost about £30 (currently worth about $41.40) if consumed in Scotland? That depends on where you live in the US as well as what sort of restaurants you choose in Scotland. I'm in an area with above-average restaurant costs, I believe, and I think I'd probably come in under budget if I made that assumption. I ate a fair amount of seafood in Scotland and found it more reasonably priced than I had expected. If you live in a small town in Iowa or Alabama, you may have a very different impression.

Note: My beverage of choice is water, so I have no clue about the comparative cost of beer, wine or other alcoholic beverages.

Posted by
427 posts

I found big city prices higher than in smaller places. The same will be in the US/Canada vs anywhere in the UK. While Canadian currency is different than the US, I found that the pound/$ numbers where pretty similar. As an example, if a sandwich special in a pub is $13 at home, it'll be around 13 pounds in the UK. I think Jennifer's answer is pretty thorough.

Posted by
5559 posts

I find this hard to do. Am I comparing them to NYC prices for lunch downtown vs up in the hood? And you do need to watch the temptation to think that £25 is the same as $25. As an interesting aside the conversion rate we're using in business finally changed for 1.3 to 1.37! So £10 now is $13.70 at least in terms of my sales budget.

Posted by
1280 posts

The Highlands and Islands are more expensive than the Central Belt and cities, it may be worth having a look at where you are staying as some places have the priced menus available.

The other thing to remember is the price on the menu is the price you pay as the tax is included, so that £15 dish on the menu is £15 on the bill.

Posted by
44 posts

I did not know that about the tax. That is very helpful. Thank you !!

Posted by
3465 posts

I have found the price in £ to be roughly equal to the price in $. Or at least close enough as long as you are not looking for exact value and factoring in the exchange rate. A $5 cup of Starbucks is a £5 cup of Starbucks. :-)

Posted by
25727 posts

It is true about the VAT (Value Added Tax, roughly comparable to sales taxes where you are from) being included in the marked prices for consumer goods and services throughout the UK, and even in the rest of Europe. The price you see is the price you pay.

As always costs vary at lot depending where you drink
A well known pub chain sells beer from £1.69 a pint
ps there are 20 fluid ounces to a UK Pint as opposed to 16 in USA

Posted by
5559 posts

So I had a good idea for you to really see prices. You need to look at the online menus! Here's The Mustard Seed, which is nice restaurant in Inverness. That fixed price lunch is cheaper than NYC. Rocpool also in Inverness is a bit pricier, but I had a wonderful meal there one night. For a pub with food and music look at Hootenanny. Here's Ceilidh Place in Ullapool. If you want a special night out in Edinburgh these would be on my list. Gardner's Cottage. Stac Polly. The Witchery. Lots of people on this forum like Howies. Here's the pub/restaurant that is near to the Inverleith where I have stayed most recently. And here's seafood in Edinburgh. I have eaten at The Shore and Fishers in the city. Outside of August Fishers served Arbroath Smokies! And in Dunkeld there is The Music Bar AKA The Taybank. And on Mull the Mishnish.

These should give you a good start. You should look at what restaurants are in the places that you want to visit and see what the price ranges are.

Posted by
44 posts

Oh my gosh Pamela that helped me so much thank you!!