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Jersey vs. Guernsey — What's the Difference?

By Tayyaba Rehman — Updated on November 4, 2023
Jersey and Guernsey are both Channel Islands near France, with their own distinct laws, currencies, and cultures.
Jersey vs. Guernsey — What's the Difference?

Difference Between Jersey and Guernsey

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Key Differences

Jersey is the largest of the Channel Islands, known for its rural landscape and beaches like St. Brelade’s Bay. It has a unique blend of British and French cultures. Guernsey, while also a Channel Island, is smaller and has its distinct flavor of culture, with landmarks such as Hauteville House, Victor Hugo’s home-in-exile.
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Nov 04, 2023
The economy of Jersey is largely driven by international financial services, tourism, and agriculture, including the famous Jersey cow. Guernsey, although it shares similar economic sectors, has a prominent finance industry and is known for Guernsey cattle, which differ from Jersey cows in both appearance and the rich milk they produce.
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Jersey operates under a bailiwick with its own legal and financial systems separate from the United Kingdom. Similarly, Guernsey is a self-governing bailiwick that has its own legal system and parliament. Both islands have their currency, although they are pegged to the British pound.
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When it comes to governance, Jersey has a Chief Minister who heads the government, while Guernsey's government is led by a President of the Policy and Resources Committee. Despite their proximity and shared status as Crown dependencies, both islands have their own distinct governments and administrative structures.
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Culturally, Jersey celebrates its heritage with events like the Battle of Flowers, a colorful carnival. Guernsey also has its cultural events, such as the annual Liberation Day, marking the island's freedom from German occupation during World War II. Both islands have rich historical narratives that are celebrated throughout the year.
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Comparison Chart

Size and Geography

Larger, with varied landscapes.
Smaller, with its own distinct topography.
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Economy

Dominated by finance, tourism, and agriculture.
Finance sector is prominent, alongside tourism.
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Legal System

Has its own legal and financial systems.
Has its own legal system and parliament.
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Government

Led by a Chief Minister.
Governed by a President of the Policy Committee.
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Cultural Events

Known for the Battle of Flowers festival.
Celebrates Liberation Day annually.
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Compare with Definitions

Jersey

A shirt worn by a member of a sports team.
The fans wore their team's jerseys to show support.
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Guernsey

A type of sweater originally worn by fishermen from Guernsey Island.
He kept warm at sea in his thick Guernsey.
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Nov 04, 2023

Jersey

A type of knitted fabric or garment, especially a pullover.
He wore a cozy jersey on his morning jog.
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Guernsey

A breed of dairy cattle known for their golden milk, from Guernsey Island.
The creamy milk of the Guernsey cow is perfect for making butter.
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Nov 04, 2023

Jersey

The largest of the Channel Islands in the English Channel.
Jersey is renowned for its beautiful beaches and historical sites.
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Guernsey

A heavy knit shirt or sweater, traditionally cream-colored.
Her Guernsey sweater was a gift from her grandmother who lived on the island.
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Nov 04, 2023

Jersey

Jersey ( JUR-zee, French: [ʒɛʁzɛ] (listen); Jèrriais: Jèrri [dʒɛri]), officially the Bailiwick of Jersey (French: Bailliage de Jersey; Jèrriais: Bailliage dé Jèrri), is an island and self-governing British Crown Dependency near the coast of north-west France. It is the largest of the Channel Islands and is 22 kilometres (14 mi) from the Cotentin peninsula in Normandy.
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Aug 26, 2019

Guernsey

A term sometimes used to describe any thick, knitted sweater.
His Guernsey kept him comfortable during the chilly evening.
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Nov 04, 2023

Jersey

The largest of the Channel Islands; population 91,900 (est. 2009); capital, St Helier.
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Aug 26, 2019

Guernsey

One of the Channel Islands in the English Channel, smaller than Jersey.
Guernsey's history is fascinating, with a blend of French and English influences.
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Nov 04, 2023

Jersey

A soft, plain-knitted fabric used for clothing.
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Aug 26, 2019

Guernsey

Guernsey ( (listen); Guernésiais: Giernési) is an island in the English Channel off the coast of Normandy that is part of the Bailiwick of Guernsey, a British Crown Dependency. It is the second largest of the Channel Islands, an island group roughly north of Saint-Malo and west of the Cotentin Peninsula.
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Aug 26, 2019

Jersey

A shirt worn by an athlete, often displaying the name of the player, team, or sponsor.
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Aug 26, 2019

Guernsey

An island in the English Channel, to the north-west of Jersey; population 65,900 (est. 2009); capital, St Peter Port. It is the second largest of the Channel Islands.
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Jersey

A close-fitting knitted pullover shirt, jacket, or sweater.
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Aug 26, 2019

Guernsey

An animal of a breed of dairy cattle from Guernsey, noted for producing rich, creamy milk.
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Jersey

Often Jersey Any of a breed of fawn-colored dairy cattle developed on the island of Jersey and producing milk that is rich in butterfat.
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Guernsey

A thick sweater made with oiled navy-blue wool and originally worn by fishermen.
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Jersey

(countable) A garment knitted from wool, worn over the upper body.
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Guernsey

Any of a breed of brown and white dairy cattle originally developed on the island of Guernsey and noted for producing a rich golden milk.
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Jersey

A shirt worn by a member of an athletic team, usually oversized, typically depicting the athlete's name and team number as well as the team's logotype.
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Aug 26, 2019

Guernsey

A seaman's knitted woolen sweater, similar to a jersey.
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Jersey

(uncountable) A type of fabric knit
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Guernsey

The shirt worn by the players.
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Jersey

The finest of wool separated from the rest; combed wool; also, fine yarn of wool.
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Guernsey

(Australia) (slang: as in "get a guernsey") [receive] praise, admiration, recognition, credit, etc
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Jersey

A kind of knitted jacket; hence, in general, a closefitting jacket or upper garment made of an elastic fabric (as stockinet).
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Aug 26, 2019

Guernsey

Breed of dairy cattle from the island of Guernsey
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Aug 26, 2019

Jersey

One of a breed of cattle in the Island of Jersey. Jerseys are noted for the richness of their milk.
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Jersey

A close-fitting pullover shirt
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Aug 26, 2019

Jersey

A slightly elastic machine-knit fabric
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Jersey

Breed from the island of Jersey
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Aug 26, 2019

Jersey

A breed of small dairy cattle originating from Jersey Island.
Jersey cows are prized for their rich and creamy milk.
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Nov 04, 2023

Common Curiosities

What are Jersey and Guernsey?

Jersey and Guernsey are both British Crown dependencies located in the Channel Islands.
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What language is spoken in Jersey and Guernsey?

English is the predominant language in both, but they have their historical languages, Jèrriais and Guernésiais.
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Are Jersey and Guernsey independent countries?

They are not independent; they are self-governing possessions of the British Crown with their autonomy.
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Do Jersey and Guernsey have their own currencies?

They issue their own banknotes and coins, which are pegged to the British pound.
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Is a passport required to travel between Jersey and Guernsey?

No passport is required for British and other Channel Island residents; ID is sufficient.
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Can I use British pounds in Jersey and Guernsey?

Yes, British pounds are accepted, but Jersey and Guernsey pounds are not generally accepted in the UK.
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What is a Jersey tomato?

It is a variety of tomato that is particularly associated with New Jersey in the United States, not the Channel Island.
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Can Jersey and Guernsey be used to refer to clothing?

Yes, jersey refers to a type of fabric or sports shirt, while Guernsey refers to a specific style of sweater.
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Are there travel connections between Jersey and Guernsey?

Yes, there are regular ferry and air services between the two islands.
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What type of government do Jersey and Guernsey have?

Both have their own parliamentary systems and are self-governing.
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Do Jersey and Guernsey have their own flags?

Yes, each island has its own distinct flag.
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What are Jersey and Guernsey cows?

They are breeds of dairy cows from their respective islands, known for high-quality milk.
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Are the Jersey and Guernsey breeds related?

Both are Channel Island dairy cows, but they are separate breeds with different characteristics.
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Can I have a bank account in Jersey or Guernsey as a non-resident?

Yes, both islands have a thriving offshore finance industry that offers services to non-residents.
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Nov 04, 2023

Are Jersey and Guernsey part of the European Union?

They were never part of the EU but had some relationship through the UK, which ended with Brexit.
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Nov 04, 2023

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Author Spotlight

Written by
Tayyaba Rehman
Tayyaba Rehman is a distinguished writer, currently serving as a primary contributor to askdifference.com. As a researcher in semantics and etymology, Tayyaba's passion for the complexity of languages and their distinctions has found a perfect home on the platform. Tayyaba delves into the intricacies of language, distinguishing between commonly confused words and phrases, thereby providing clarity for readers worldwide.

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