Botswana Currency

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Botswana Currency

Useful and important information when travelling to Botswana

What is Botswana's Currency called?

Botswana's currency is called Pula (banknotes) which literally means "Rain" in their native language Setswana and is in denominations of 10, 20, 50, 100 and 200 Pula. 1 Pula is the equivalent of 100 Thebe (coins) meaning "shield" in Setswana and is provided in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 25 and 50, whilst 1, 2 and 5 Pula are also produced as coins.

Botswana Pula Currency Code: BWP

"P" - This is the symbol you'll see alongside (some) prices / rates

Can you pay or use US Dollar (USD) in Botswana?

Yes, the US Dollar (USD) is widely accepted by many local businesses and Accommodation Lodges in Botswana however it's also wise to carry a sufficient amount of local Pula for those smaller or other businesses who prefer or deal only with their local currency.

You will notice that most Accommodation Lodges in Botswana quote their rates in the US Dollar currency (USD)

Currency Conversion Services:

Travellers to Botswana can quite easily convert the South African Rand, US dollar, British Pound and Euro currencies into Pula at bureaux de change and banks in main towns & cities (including major border posts). Some hotels are authorised to offer currency conversion services but be sure to confirm this service with the hotel prior.

Credit Cards & ATMS:

Major credit cards including MasterCard and foreign Visa cards are accepted by most hotels, restaurants, retail outlets & tour operators, and can be used to draw money out of ATMs found in Botswana's larger towns & cities. If you are travelling to a rural or remote location in Botswana then keep in mind that some shops and fuel stations can only accept cash, and may not have any ATMS to draw money out of - therefore cash in hand is very important. Note: Diners or American Express credit cards aren't accepted by some businesses in Botswana.

Commercial Banks:

There are 11 commercial banks in Botswana:

  • ABN AMRO Outside Banking Unit
  • BancABC
  • Bank of Baroda
  • Bank Gaborone
  • Barclays Bank
  • Capital Bank
  • First National Bank (FNB)
  • Stanbic Bank
  • Standard Chartered Bank
  • Bank of India

Banking Hours:

This may vary depending on the bank but operating hours are generally from:

08:30am → 3:30pm on Mondays to Fridays
08:30am → 11:00am on Saturdays.

Money Saving Tip:

Most hotels, lodges and tour operators in Botswana quote in US dollars but also keep an eye out for related services quoting in Pula because you might find yourself saving a lot of money paying in Botswana's local currency as opposed to the monetary exchange rate loss from BWP-USD conversions.

Cash in Hand:

When travelling to Botswana via vehicle, make sure you carry a sufficient amount of cash in your local currency for border fees because not all border posts accept credit cards nor have the facilities to do an electronic transaction as such. Most border posts accept currencies from the country you're entering from however kindly contact the border authorities directly to confirm.

Botswana Exchange Rate Calculator:

Terms & Conditions: cannot be held liable for any change in exchange rates and information above.

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