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Banking, Currency and Tax in New Zealand

Currency

New Zealand's unit of currency is the New Zealand dollar (NZ$). Coins have values of 10, 20 and 50 cents and $1 and $2. Notes have values of $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100.

There is no restriction on the amount of foreign currency that can be brought in or taken out of New Zealand. However, every person who carries more than NZ$10,000 in cash in or out of New Zealand is required to complete a Border Cash Report.

Foreign currency can easily be exchanged at banks, New Zealand Post shops, some hotels and Bureau de Change kiosks, which are found at international airports and most city centres. All major credit cards can be used in New Zealand. Travellers Cheques are accepted at hotels, banks and some stores.

Exchange Rates

Banks should be able to tell you what the current exchange rate is with the New Zealand dollar. The Reserve Bank of New Zealand provides a monthly online summary of the New Zealand Dollar's average value against the US Dollar, the Pound, the Australian Dollar, the Yen and the Euro.

You can calculate the approximate value of about 30 currencies in New Zealand Dollars on the Bank of New Zealand. The rate you are offered in your home country is likely to differ slightly.

View current foreign exchange rates.

Banking

Banks are open from 9.30am to 4.30pm Monday to Friday. Automated Teller Machines (ATM) are widely available at banks, along main shopping streets and in malls. International credit cards and ATM cards will work as long as they have a four-digit PIN encoded. Check with your bank before leaving home.

Goods and Services Tax

All goods and services are subject to a 15 percent Goods and Services Tax (GST) included in the displayed price. Visitors cannot claim this tax back, however when a supplier ships a major purchase to a visitor's home address the GST will not be charged.

How Much Will it Cost?

Here is a general guide of what you can expect to pay in New Zealand for a few common items:

  • A hotel breakfast NZ$10 - $25
  • Dinner (three course, no wine) NZ$20 - $50
  • Lunch snack/sandwich NZ$5 - $10
  • Cafe lunch NZ$10 - $15.00
  • A postcard stamp to anywhere abroad NZ$1.50
  • Big Mac Hamburger NZ$4.45
  • Cappuccino NZ$3 - $4.50

Tipping and Service Charges

New Zealanders do not expect tips for normal service--even in restaurants and bars. However, tipping for extra special service or kindness is at the discretion of the visitor. Hotels and restaurants in New Zealand do not add service charges to their bills.

View more key facts and information about New Zealand.

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