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Money and duty free for Ghana

Currency and Money

Currency information

Ghana Cedi (GHS; symbol ¢) = 100 Ghana pesewas. Notes are in denominations of ¢50, 20, 10, 5 and 1. Coins are in denominations of ¢1 and 50, 20, 10, 5 and 1 pesewas.

Credit cards

Credit and debit cards are accepted by some leading hotels, restaurants, banks, businesses and upmarket shops in Accra, but are seldom accepted elsewhere in the country, and fraud is quite common. In large urban areas such as Accra and Kumasi, a safer bet is to draw local currency from one of the many ATMs that accept international credit cards. By far the most widely accepted type of card is Visa. MasterCard is also accepted at some outlets, but other brands, including American Express and Diners Club, are near useless in Ghana.

ATM

In large urban areas such as Accra and Kumasi, ATMs accepting international Visa cards (and occasionally MasterCard) are commonplace.

Travellers cheques

Travellers cheques are close to useless in Ghana. One of the few places that will exchange them is the head office of Barclays Bank in Accra and Takoradi, but it seems likely this facility will eventually close too.

Banking hours

Mon-Fri 0830-1600; some banks also open Sat 0800-1200.

Currency restrictions

The import of local currency is limited to the amount previously taken out of the country and declared. The import of foreign currency is unlimited, but must be declared upon arrival. The export of local currency is limited to ¢1,000. The export of foreign currency is limited to US$5,000 or equivalent. None of this us likely to have any practical implication for tourists.

Currency exchange

The exchange rate system has been liberalised and foreign currency is freely available through authorised dealers including banks and foreign exchange bureaux. The US dollar is the most widely recognised currency, and smaller bills often fetch a poor rate compared with US$50 or US$100 bills.

Ghana duty free

The following goods may be imported into Ghana by travellers aged 18 and over without incurring customs duty:

 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars or 250g of tobacco. 
2L of wine and 1L of spirits.
• 50ml of perfume and 250ml of eau de toilette.

Gifts and souvenirs are subject to duty.

Banned Imports

Prohibited imports include infected animals and carcasses, beads of inflammable celluloid, raw coffee imported overland, coins not up to standard, contaminated food, knuckle dusters, literature considered scandalising, defamatory or demoralising, counterfeit money, obscene articles and dangerous weapons.

Restricted imports include diamonds, films, gambling devices, plants and plant products, arms and ammunition, milk deficient in fat, animal traps and nets, and certain spirits (eg brandy, whisky and rum must have been stored in wood for at least three years).