The Chinese currency is the RenMinBi
(CNY), generally pronounced Yuan in written form, but
spoken as Kuai. Paper money available in CNY1, CNY5,
CNY10, CNY50 and CNY100. Today, China is suffering from
numerous counterfeit notes. Fake notes are sometimes
easily recognisable since the paper feels different
and the Chinese will check several time when they receive
a CNY50 or CNY100 to make sure it is not a fake. Old
and tattered notes can be difficult to exchange so try
not to accumulate them.
Most of the time, vendors and taxi
drivers ask for a small note when you pass them a CNY100
note, sometime they cannot change it and sometimes are
not willing to. So it is a good idea to stack up on
CNY10 bills. If you have any problems with a note, exchange
it for a new one or small change at a bank. A counterfake
note will be confiscated.
Travellers cheques are the best
way to carry money around in China, the exchange rate
is fixed and it can be replaced if lost or stolen. Cheques
can be cashed at the major branches of the Bank of China.
Credit cards like Visa, Mastercard and American Express
are useful in major tourist cities too. They can be
used in most mid range to top range hotels, and some
big department stores. You can get cash advances in
the head branches of the Bank of China, however, a high
commission will be charged (four percent).
Foreign currency can be changed
in most banks and hotels. Exchange rates do not vary
that much, so hotels are often the most straightforward
place to exchange. Keep the exchange receipt with you
in case you want to exchange any remaining CNY you have
left over when you leave. Please use our CURRENCY CONVERTER
in the "Reservations" pages of the site.