Money & duty free for India

Exchange rates:

Rupee
C$1 = Rs50.6
€1 = Rs70.94
£1 = Rs84.19
US$1 = Rs67.87

Currency & Money

Currency information

Rupee (INR; symbol Rs) = 100 paise. Notes are in denominations of Rs2,000, 500, 100, 50, 20, 10 and 5. Coins are in denominations of Rs10, 5, 2 and 1, and 50, 25, 20, 10 and 5 paise.

The Indian government's decision to take 500 and 1,000 rupee notes out of immediate circulation in November 2016 caused widespread cash shortages, although a different 500 rupee note was later introduced. Updates can be found on the Reserve Bank of India's website.

Note: The import and export of local currency is prohibited. Sometimes smaller vendors will not take bills larger than Rs 500. It is best to carry a range of rupee notes if you are shopping at bazaars and local markets.

Credit cards

In major cities, banks cards are generally accepted including debit cards, American Express, Diners Club, MasterCard and Visa. However, in smaller towns and villages, choice is generally narrowed to cash or MasterCard and Visa.

ATM

24-hour ATM can be found in all the major cities and most large towns, however, the number of ATMs is declining. Visa, MasterCard, Cirrus, Maestro and Plus are amongst the most commonly accepted cards.

Travellers cheques

Travellers cheques are increasingly hard to cash in India and are no longer recommended.

Banking hours

Mon-Fri 1000-1600; Sat 1000-1600.

Currency restriction

The import and export of local currency is prohibited. The import of foreign currency is unlimited. However, amounts exceeding US$5,000 or equivalent in cash, or US$10,000 or equivalent in all forms of currency (cash and traveller’s cheques) must be declared. The export of foreign currency is allowed up to the amount imported and declared.

Currency exchange

Currency can be changed at banks, airports or authorised money changers. Many hotels also have facilities to change money but this is a more expensive option. It is illegal to exchange money through unauthorised money changers. US Dollars and Pounds Sterling are the easiest currencies to exchange.

India duty free

Non-resident travellers may import the following items into India over 18 without incurring customs duty:

• 100 cigarettes or 25 cigars or 125g of tobacco.
• 2L of spirits or wine.
• Gifts and souvenirs to the value of Rs8,000 (US$125).
• Reasonable quantities of medicines.

Import by non-residents is only permitted if the national has entered India for a stay of not more than six months within a 12-month period.

Banned imports

Prohibited items include narcotics, pornography, counterfeit and pirated goods, and antiquities.

Restricted items include firearms and ammunition, live birds and animals (including pets), endangered species, gold and silver (other than ornaments), and Indian currency. Indian residents only may import up to Rs25,000.

Banned exports

Prohibited items include narcotics, pornography, counterfeit and pirated goods, and antiquities.

Restricted items include firearms and ammunition, live birds and animals (including pets), endangered species, and Indian currency. Indian residents only may export up to Rs25,000.

Visa and passport information is updated regularly and is correct at the time of publishing. You should verify critical travel information independently with the relevant embassy before you travel.