Money and Banking in China
Chinese Currency (RMB)
The official currency of China is the Renminbi (RMB), which is issued and managed by the People's Bank of China. The symbol for RMB is:
The unit of Renminbi is a 'Yuan' and with smaller denominations called 'Jiao and Fen'. The conversion among the three is:
1 yuan = 10 jiao =100 fen
RMB is issued both in notes and coins. The denominations of paper notes include 100, 50, 20, 10, 5, 2 and 1 yuan; 5, 2 and 1 jiao; and 5, 2 and 1 fen. The denominations of coins are 1 yuan; 5, 2 and 1 jiao; and 5, 2 and 1 fen.
Note: in spoken Chinese, Yuan is often called as kuai and the jiao as mao.
Traveller's cheques provide a fairly secure way of carrying your money. Always remember to keep the record of cheque numbers separate from the cheques for reference in the event of loss.
For the convenience of tourists, the Bank of China can cash travelers' cheques sold by international commercial banks and travellers' cheque companies in the United States, Canada, Australia, Hong Kong, Japan, Britain, France, Switzerland, Germany as well as many other countries. Also the Bank of China sells travellers' cheques for other banking institutions such as American Express, Citibank, Tongjilong Travelers' Cheque Co., the Sumitomo Bank of Japan, the Swiss Banking Corporation and others.
Money exchange facilities for both currency and travellers' cheques are available at major airports, hotels, and department stores. Please note that hotels may only exchange money for their guests.
The US dollar, British pound, French franc, German mark, Japanese yen, Australian dollar, Austrian schilling, Belgian franc, Canadian dollar, HK dollar, Swiss franc, Danish Krone, Singapore dollar, Malaysian ringgit, Italian lira, Macao dollar, Finnish markka, and Taiwan dollar are all exchangeable. Exchange rates fluctuate in line with international financial market conditions and are published daily by the State Exchange Control Administration.
Keep your currency exchange receipts because you will need to show them when you change RMB back to your own currency at the end of visit to the Republic. Cash rather than credit cards is essential in remote areas and you should ensure that you carry sufficient RMB and travelersí cheques to cover your requirements.
Credit Card and ATMs
At present, the following credit cards are accepted in China: Mastercard, Federal Card, Visa, American Express, JCB, and Diners Card. Cardholders can withdraw cash from the Bank of China and pay for purchases at exchange centers of the Bank of China, appointed shops, hotels, and restaurants.
However, this applies only in major cities and they are not always accepted in remote areas. Credit cards are not always accepted for the purchase of rail and air tickets.
ATMs that accept foreign cards are few and far between. Do not rely on them as a way of obtaining cash in mainland China.
Consult with your bank before departing to make sure that your brand of cheque or credit card will be accepted.
Currency Regulations in China
There is no limit on the amount of foreign currency and foreign exchange bills that can be brought into China by tourists, but it must be declared to the customs.
RMB should be converted back into foreign currency with the personal valid foreign exchange certificate before leaving China. Unused foreign exchange and RMB traveler's cheques can be taken out of the country. Each tourist is permitted to take with them less than 6000 RMB.