1. Travel
Send to a Friend via Email

Australian Money

What You Need to Know About Australian Money

By

Various Australian notes and coins

Various Australian notes and coins

Photo: Larry Rivera

Australian money consists of banknotes and coins.

Australian banknotes (called "bills" in countries such as the USA) are made of plastic in a manufacturing process pioneered in Australia. They come in denominations of $100, $50, $20, $10 and $5.

Australian notes come in different colors for easy identification (for instance, green for the $100 note, blue for the $10 note). They are of the same measure vertically, but differ in measure horizontally. The $100 note has the greatest horizontal measure, the $5 note the least.

Australian coins comprise gold and silver coins of various weights and sizes. The terms "gold" and "silver" refer more to their appearance than to actual valuable metal content. There is, for instance, no gold in the "gold" coin.

Australian coins come in denominations of $2, $1, 50¢, 20¢, 10¢ and 5¢.

Coin use restrictions

Copper coins of 2¢ and 1¢ denominations are no longer in circulation.

Silver coins of 5¢ denomination are not accepted at some automatic exact-change tollbooths (particularly around Sydney) and in some other coin-operated machines or facilities. If driving, have an adequate supply of $2 and $1 coins.

Some parking meters only accept $1 and $2 gold coins.

Coin sizes and shapes

From largest size to lowest, these coins are the silver 50¢, silver 20¢, gold $1, silver 10¢; gold $2, and silver 5¢ pieces.

The 50¢ piece is in the shape of a 12-sided polygon. The coin edges are smooth.

Aside from the 50¢ piece, Australian coins are round in shape with knurled or partly-knurled edges.

The $1 and 10¢ pieces are almost identical in size, except that the $1 coin is thicker, heavier, of gold color, and its edge is partly knurled. The edge of the 10¢ coin is lightly knurled all around.

The $2 and 5¢ pieces are also almost identical in size, except that the $2 coin is thicker, heavier, of gold color, and its edge is partly knurled. The edge of the 5¢ coin is lightly knurled all around.

Money value

Being a decimal currency, there are 100¢ in the dollar.

The Australian dollar had been worth less than the US dollar for a number of years but, for some time recently, exceeded the US dollar in value. Currency is, of course, still marked by rises and falls.

Here's a handy currency coverter.

  1. About.com
  2. Travel
  3. Australia Travel
  4. Visiting Australia
  5. Alphabetical Index
  6. Maalinup Aboriginal Gallery to
  7. What You Need to Know About Australian Money

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.