Saturday, September 18, 2021

Money & Shopping in Algeria

AfricaAlgeriaMoney & Shopping in Algeria

The Algerian dinar is the country’s currency (DZD). DZD5, DZD10, DZD20, DZD50, and DZD100 coins are available. DZD100, DZD200, DZD500, DZD1000, DZD2000, and DZD5000 banknotes are available.

USD1 equals DZD107 as of June 2016, and money may be exchanged in banks or post offices. Make sure the money you’re exchanging are in excellent shape; many are hesitant to take torn or older banknotes. Avoid using currencies other than euros or US dollars since it may be difficult to locate a bank that would convert them.

Exchanging money with unauthorized money changers on street corners typically results in a higher exchange rate. There are certain places where this is very prevalent. The proposed exchange rate is usually much better than the official rate (eg EUR1 to DZD100 vs EUR1 to DZD150). It seems to be a fairly safe procedure, and it is often carried out in the presence of police officers who appear unconcerned.

ATMs are plentiful and can be located in any post office or bigger bank, where you may withdraw Algerian dinar using any major credit card or Maestro card. If a pin with six digits is required, just add two zeros to the beginning of your pin. A lot of Algerian-branded ATMs don’t accept international cards (even though they say they do) – we tried around 6 ATMs and just one of them worked (a Societe Generale one).

Algeria is, in general, a cash-based culture, with most businesses refusing to take credit cards. Some hotels do (especially the bigger ones), while some do not. By taking advantage of the considerably superior conversion rates provided by the illegal exchange market, such as those described above, bringing a big supply of Euro in cash may result in much cheaper trips.

In comparison to western circumstances, living in Algeria is extremely inexpensive; for example, DZD300 can buy you a full dinner or a bus trip from Algiers to Oran (400 km). A mid-sized apartment would usually set you back DZD60,000 per month if you pay six months in advance; an underground metro ticket will set you back DZD50.