Money and duty free for Republic of Congo
Currency and Money
CFA (Communauté Financière Africaine) Franc (XAF) = 100 centimes. Notes are in denominations of XAF10,000, 5,000, 2,000, 1,000 and 500. Coins are in denominations of XAF250, 100, 50, 25, 10, 5 and 1.
Congo is part of the French Monetary Area. Only currency issued by the Banque des États de l'Afrique Centrale (Bank of Central African States) is valid; currency issued by the Banque des États de l'Afrique de l'Ouest (Bank of West African States) is not. The CFA Franc is tied to the Euro. However, US Dollars are the preferred currency.
Diners Club and MasterCard have limited use. Hotels in Brazzaville and Pointe-Noire accept major credit or debit cards, although prefer cash. One bank in Brazzaville has an ATM.
One bank in Brazzaville has an ATM.
To avoid additional exchange rate charges, travellers are advised to take traveller's cheques in Euros or Pounds Sterling. These are accepted only in the larger cities.
Mon-Fri 0630-1300 (counters close at 1130).
The import and export of local currency is prohibited, except between countries of the Central African group. The import of foreign currency is unrestricted, although amounts over US$235 must be declared on arrival. Export of foreign currency is restricted to the amount imported.
Republic of Congo duty free
The following items may be imported into Congo by visitors over 18 years of age without incurring customs duty:
• 200 cigarettes or 1 box of cigars or tobacco (women are permitted to import cigarettes only).
• 1 bottle of spirits and 1 bottle of wine.
• A reasonable quantity of perfume in opened bottles.
If importing expensive items such as watches and cameras, it is advisable to present the receipt.