What kind of US$ banknote in Tanzania ?

Old Jun 9th, 2008, 12:52 PM
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What kind of US$ banknote in Tanzania ?

I am from EU and was very impressed to receive information from my tour operator in Tanzania how the US$ banknotes have to be: "... please note only bills with the large head are accepted in Tanzania. Bills with the small head are no longer accepted, and bills should be clean and without rips or tears. No bills issued before the year 2000 can be accepted."

Do you experts have the same information ? I am not enough familiar with US$ bills to determine the difference in advance and have no idea about small or big head !! and I wonder how to handle this with my bank. It is probably better to change the Euro money into US$ once I land in Tanzania, or ??

thanks for your suggestions !
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Old Jun 9th, 2008, 01:11 PM
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Do you experts have the same information ?

I'm no expert, but yes, what you were told is true ... they only accept newer bills because the older ones are apparently easily counterfeited.

Same deal in many parts of Europe ... we tried to convert some older US $50's and $100's to Euros in Amsterdam and they made us wait 30 minutes while they ran all kinds of tests on them. In Tanzania they simply will not take them at all, at least not at the parks (we tried to pay for Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crate fees with them and had to dig out newer ones instead).

Just ask your bank for new bills and you should be fine.

Bill
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Old Jun 9th, 2008, 01:41 PM
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US bills have years on them. It will say "Series 2003" or whatever year. Basically any 2000 or newer bills will have the "big head" except for $1 bills which are still "small heads".

Here's an example of a big headed $100
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Usdollar100front.jpg

And a smalled headed $1 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:U...2C_obverse.jpg

Hope this helps and yes, you do need the newer bills.
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Old Jun 9th, 2008, 01:49 PM
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The very newest bills also have subdued colors such as these examples -

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:U...06_Obverse.jpg

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:U...06_obverse.jpg

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Old Jun 9th, 2008, 02:18 PM
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your TO is right!

it happend to me in kenya as well: bank refused the 50$ bills with small heads!

to ply safe: only bills smaller than 50$!
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Old Jun 10th, 2008, 08:26 AM
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I asked my Tanzanian safari company if he preferred $20's or if I could pay with $100's (as long as they were the Big Head later issues) and he responded with:

"Large bills please the smaller ones get a lower rate when changing."

So it can't hurt to ask if you know you will be needing money for a particular person or group. I will be bringing smaller "Big Headed" bills as well for other payments.
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Old Jun 10th, 2008, 09:11 AM
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poosahsmeh

of course if you need to pay let's say a safari bill - which is mostly done by banktransfer anyway - then the larger the bills the better.

but if you need to change into KSH - i would definately go no further then the 20er bills.
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Old Jun 10th, 2008, 09:20 AM
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divine,
Why no bills larger than $20 to exchange? In Kenya, I usually use $100 bills to exchange to KES.
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Old Jun 10th, 2008, 09:25 AM
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patty,
as said - in order to make sure they change your bills.
once my 50$ bills were neglected at a bank in nairobi.
they only accept "large heads".
to be on the safe side - since then i only travel with smaller bills.
besides the head question it's not a big deal and i am always ready to pay tips, small purchases without getting too much change respectively pay too much tip.
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Old Jun 10th, 2008, 09:35 AM
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That sounds like more of an issue with the bill date rather than the denomination. I've not had any trouble with the big headed $50s or $100s.
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Old Jun 10th, 2008, 09:42 AM
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patty you are right: large heads normally don't cause problems.

as i don't need any fuss while travelling i simply don't buy large denominations.
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Old Jun 10th, 2008, 12:53 PM
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Wow !!! What a lot of information !! Thanks to all of you !! Now I know much more on US$ bills !

I paid a deposit of US$ 800.00 to my TO through a bank SWIFT transfer with a bank fee of US$ 71.00 !!, almost 10% of the amount !!
The TO had told me in advance that I could have then paid the balance cash on arrival and gave me above info on the bills. I would need the $100 bills to reduce the volume of the needed bills to reach the balance !!

I will check well with the bank before leaving on august 19th, trying to avoid the $ 1 small head bills.

thanks again also for the samples, Patty !

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Old Jun 10th, 2008, 01:29 PM
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Just to clarify, you cannot avoid the small head $1 bills as $1 bills only come in small heads, but all other denominations ($5, $10, $20, $50, $100) are available in big heads.
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Old Jun 10th, 2008, 02:12 PM
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Ok Patty, thanks. It is now even more clear !!

I am coming to the US next month for 2 and half weeks vacation so I can get more familiar with those bills and I could get there some extra bigheaded bills for the later african trip !
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