Hardware

Why is there no pound sign on my keyboard?

Keyboard without pound sign
Compounded: find out how to enter the £ sign

Assuming you’re in the UK, the pound sign (£) is normally found on the 3 key. You press Shift + 3 to get the £ to appear. But what if there’s no pound sign on your keyboard? Let’s explain how you get around the issue and why it’s normally not a major problem.

By the way, if you’re an American or otherwise refer to the pound sign as #, then click here to find out how to get that sign.

No pound sign on keyboard

If the printed lettering on your keyboard shows no pound sign on the 3 key, it’s almost certain that you’ve got a keyboard with the American English layout. On American keyboards, the £ is normally replaced with a hash (#), as you can see on this Vissles keyboard pictured below:

Vissles V84 keyboard

That doesn’t mean you can’t type a £ sign by pressing Shift + 3, though. As long as your operating system is set to UK English, the £ should still appear when you type Shift + 3.

How to change keyboard language

If you’re using Windows, you can put your keyboard into UK English by opening the Windows search and typing ‘language’. You should see a settings menu such as the one below in Windows 11 (the Windows 10 menu is very similar):

Windows 11 language settings

Make sure English (United Kingdom) is selected on both Windows display language and Country or region.

On a Mac, open System Preferences, search for ‘language’ in the top-right of the System Preferences window and then ensure English (UK) is selected as the Primary language and United Kingdom is the selected region, as shown:

Mac language settings

How to get the pound sign without changing language

Let’s say you’re using a computer in a foreign country and can’t change the language, or you simply don’t want to change the language on the computer you’re using. How do you type the £ sign?

By far the easiest thing to do is simply copy and paste it from this website into the document/email or whatever you’re typing. We’ve put the pound sign on a clear line below so it’s easier to copy:

£

On Windows, highlight the pound sign and then copy with Ctrl + C and paste with Ctrl + V. It’s Command + C and Command + V on a Mac.

About the author

Barry Collins

Barry has scribbled about tech for almost 20 years for The Sunday Times, PC Pro, WebUser, Which? and many others. He was once Deputy Editor of Mail Online and remains in therapy to this day. Email Barry at barry@bigtechquestion.com.

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