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Lowest denomination notes in Europe vs USA

Lowest denomination notes in Europe vs USA

Old Feb 5th, 2003, 09:24 AM
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Lowest denomination notes in Europe vs USA

Whenever I encounter a vending machine in the USA that does not take my $1 note, I often felt that for an industrial country, the US still uses a note in that low value range. So I looked up the lowest paper money used by other industrial nations and their US dollar equivalences:

Euro 5 $5.44
England 5 $8.24
Swiss 10 $7.42
Sweden 20 $2.35
New Zealand 5 $2.75
Canada 5 $3.30
Japan 1000 $8.35
Australia 5 $2.95

Do other countries know something that US does not?

I also felt that in Europe, my pocket tend to be more coin heavy. But I also wondered if pickpockets only go for the wallets and purses and not the loose changes in the pockets?
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Old Feb 5th, 2003, 09:35 AM
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Interesting point nickn...
I must admit that I go through many change purses due to the extreme amount of coins we have here in Switz!

BTW...what about the Sacajawea $1 coin? Still in use?
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Old Feb 5th, 2003, 09:35 AM
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This has been discussed here before...there is a clique whether it be in Congress which have resisted entering the 21st century on things such as this as well as measurement. Why in the US do we insist on continuing with the outdated imbecilic Farenheit thermometer? Or the stupid English system of weights and measurements (even the UK has been forced to enter the 21st century on this...although for the time being they retain miles instead of kilometers). Oh we hear how the public is resistant to this...you know what you do it. You develop an impresive looking $1 coin (not what we have now) and declare that after June 30 the one dollar and two dollar bank notes will no longer have value. Sure there will be a little bit of screaming just like in April 1971 the Brits did away with their old coinage and decimalized the pound. That last about 48 hours and after that, people understood it was much better. Same thing would happen here but for a country which like to pride itself on being so technologically advanced, we are really in the dark ages.
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Old Feb 5th, 2003, 09:36 AM
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On a similar note, I'm one of those people who have always wondered why we don't give up pennies and round off to 5 cents. So I was really amazed that when Europe went euro, they created not only a one cent coin but a two cent coin as well. I must say, however, that even with three months travel, I hardly accumulated any of either of those small coins. They at least have the "sense" to round off without the odd "cents". Of course, the whole system is helped by the fact that odd pennies of tax aren't added on making more and more odd cent sales.
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Old Feb 5th, 2003, 09:41 AM
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Queenie:

The $1 coin is very rarely used....because people are not forced to use it. They find $1 bank notes much more how shall we say it user friendly till they have to dig up change to put in a vending machine to buy a package of cancer sticks. To me it is a very unimpressive looking coin. I think the $1 coin should be nice and thick just like the British 1 pound coin which to me is one of the most impressive coins in the world.
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Old Feb 5th, 2003, 09:42 AM
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I'm not sure I understand your point -- I think there is some clause or thought missing from your first sentence.

I don't use vending machines that much so don't consider this a major problem and don't understand your complaint. Most only take coins because I think it is much more expensive to make machines that take paper and to detect it correctly. I guess your point is that the dollar is now such a minor amount of money, it should only be a coin. Perhaps someday it will be. I believe that one reason they don't is that it is a lot more difficult to carry around 100 large metal coins than 100 lightweight pieces of paper.
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Old Feb 5th, 2003, 10:23 AM
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Christina, now it is my turn to say I don't understand your last point.
Why would anyone carry around either a hundred pieces of paper or a hundred coins? That would only be true if the one dollar was the largest bill. But since there are fives and tens, you only need to carry up to five one dollar coins or bills. The Europeans were smart to make the one euro coin a lot easier to carry and recognize than the feeble attempts in the US.
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Old Feb 5th, 2003, 12:51 PM
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The paper dollar bill, fahrenheit thermometer, and English measures work fine. It's not that big a deal to get agitated about. I've lived in countries that used metric and countries that didn't--I saw no impact on quality of life or happiness.
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Old Feb 6th, 2003, 03:30 AM
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In the US, many people use only paper currency and dump a few coins they get as change in their pocket. In the UK, everyone, including men, usually carry coin bags. This is because coins are in widespread use and the smallest note is £10.

Until Americans start carrying coin bags and they stop printing $1 notes, $1 coins will be hated.
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Old Feb 6th, 2003, 03:53 AM
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This is interesting - as a British person, I hate $1 bills when I travel to America. They get so worn and tatty and it doesn't help that it's difficult to tell the different between a 1 and a 10 at a quick glance.

There was a lot of opposition in the UK to the elimination of the £1 note some years ago. Many people felt that the pound coin would weigh them down. Now, however, I don't think many people would want to go back.

By the way, just a couple of corrections to Hiroshi's comments. First, the smallest note in the UK is £5 as nickn said in the first post, not £10. Second, I don't actually know any man here who carries a coin purse or bag. Everyone I know just puts their coins in their pockets. The £1 coin has also now been joined by a £2 coin, which helps alleviate the weight somewhat. I actually find that the greatest weigh in my own purse is usually made up of the smaller coins, which accumulate when I can't be bothered to count out the correct change and just hand over a few pound coins instead!
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Old Feb 6th, 2003, 05:03 AM
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Just a minor correction to Annac's comments. £1 notes are still in use here in Scotland - issued by the Royal Bank of Scotland, I think. They're not that common these days and tend to be a bit grubby. I don't know anyone who uses a coin purse or bag either.
 
Old Feb 6th, 2003, 05:40 AM
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I find it more odd that you have so little difference in size and appearance between the notes in the US. As I understand it, there's a whole art and science about the design of currency in other countries, and fairly frequent open consultation with people who have special concerns such as the visually-impaired, retailers and manufacturers of coin-operated machinery, as well as the banks. It's understood that designs will change from time to time to try to keep one jump ahead of the forgers and to keep the system cost-effective (below a certain value the limited circulation-life of paper money really is a waste), as well as to cope with changing ideas of what looks smart.
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Old Feb 6th, 2003, 09:17 AM
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Stranger things. The lords of the European Central Bank so one is led to understand are thinking of bringing in the 1 euro note in a dubious effort to ease the inflation cries.
But biggest query is why all countries do not follow Australia in introducing plastic notes (Mexico just brought them in to). Australia has had them for years - they stay clean, and are virtually indestructible unless you take scissors to them. Because they feel different, you are bound to get whingers saying you cannot change things, but has anyone been out to Oz for more than a week and really felt offended?
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