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Money and duty free for Bhutan

Currency and Money

Currency information

1 Ngultrum (BTN; symbol Nu) = 100 chetrum (Ch). The Ngultrum is pegged to the Indian Rupee (which is also acccepted as legal tender). Notes are in denominations of Nu500, 100, 50, 20, 10 and 5. Coins are in denominations of Nu1, and 50, 25 and 20 chetrum. Smaller denomination notes and coins have been discontinued but are still in circulation and are legal tender. US Dollars are also widely accepted.

Credit cards

Most cards have limited acceptability. ATMs only accept Bhutanese bank cards.

ATM

ATMs only accept Bhutanese bank cards.

Travellers cheques

These can be exchanged in any branch of the Bank of Bhutan or at all BTCL hotels. Travellers are advised to take traveller's cheques in US Dollars.

Banking hours

Mon-Fri 0900-1500, Sat 0900-1200.

Currency restrictions

There are no restrictions on the import or export of local or foreign currency, but foreign currency must be declared upon arrival.

Currency exchange

Leading foreign currencies are accepted but traveller's cheques are preferred and receive a better exchange rate. Major hotels in Thimphu, Paro and Phuentsholing will also exchange foreign currency.

Bhutan duty free

Overview

The following goods may be imported into Bhutan by tourists without incurring duty:

• 1L of alcoholic beverages.
• Personal effects.

The sale of tobacco is banned in Bhutan. Tourists can import 200 cigarettes or three 50g tins of tobacco for personal consumption, but these are subject to 100% tax.

The following goods may be imported by Bhutanese residents without incurring duty:

• 2 bottles of alcoholic beverages of up to 2L each.
• 50g of gold.
• 1kg of silver.
• 60ml of perfume.
• 10 items of each type of clothing.

The total value of the above items must not exceed US$1,000.

Banned Imports

Prohibited imports include narcotics, pornography and antiques.

Restricted imports include arms and ammunition, drugs and pharmaceutical products, used and secondhand goods and equipment, gold and silver in excess of baggage allowance, live animals and their products, plants and chemicals.

Banned Exports

Prohibited exports include narcotics, pornography and antiques.

Restricted exports include arms and ammunition, drugs and pharmaceutical products, used and secondhand goods and equipment, gold and silver in excess of baggage allowance, live animals and their products, plants, chemicals and telecommunications equipment.

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