£ symbol showing as ? when importing sales invoices from CSV


We run a small school which invoices clients per term, and as such we can’t really make use of the recurring invoices feature but will instead be using the feature allowing the same CSV upload of all invoices each billing cycle. To show which classes each student is being billed for we are using a concatenation of fields in Excel to produce a Description to support the one-liner invoice style supported by this feature, which is then imported to QuickFile.

In this Description field, we are highlighting the number of classes and the price, “Class One (6 x £8.75)” would be a typical description. When imported to QuickFile the “£” symbol is shown as a “?”. I thought I might overcome this using HTML entity names, or unicode IDs but both of these fail (HTML entity works for when viewing on QuickFile but not on the actual PDF invoice). Does anybody have any ideas how we can overcome this issue?

Thanks in advance


I know nothing about the internals of QuickFile but as a programmer these kinds of issues are usually due to a character encoding mismatch - maybe the CSV is being exported from Excel in something like ISO-8859-1 or Windows-1252 encoding but QuickFile expects UTF-8. If there’s an option to select the encoding (sometimes called “character set”) when exporting the CSV then try some different options and see what happens.

(Given you’re seeing a single question mark I suspect UTF-8 is the one that will work - if you were exporting UTF-8 and QuickFile expected ISO-8859-1 then you’d see two characters “£”)

Edit: in Excel 2013 this option is apparently available via the “Tools” button in the save as dialog, Tools -> Web options -> Encoding (source)

Thank you - that’s something I didn’t even consider… but unfortunately it didn’t work.

I went through all the applicable types and it always returns “?”.

Anything else you think might work?


Hello Heather,

Thanks for letting us know about this, I haven’t yet reproduced the error myself but I shall try in one minute. However you shouldn’t need to be handling the encoding yourself, this is something we need to look at.

Once I’ve run a couple of test imports I will get back to you. I’m optimistic this will be a simple fix.


OK I’ve reproduced and reported this bug. We should have this fixed very soon.

That’s fantastic news.

Thank you!

Quick update here. We switched our encoding for the CSV mapper to UTF8 from ASCII, this will now ensure that £ symbols are correctly transposed.

This update was made to our development system and will go live on the next release (sometime this week).


This is now live, £ symbols will be correctly translated on all invoice imports.

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