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The Low Down on Chinese Currency



Currency code:


Central Bank:

People's Bank of China

Currency symbol:

¥ (Yuan)

Currency sub unit:

角 (Jiao)


Kuài, Mao

Bank notes:

¥1, ¥5, ¥10, ¥20, ¥50, ¥100


1角, 5角, ¥1

The official currency of mainland China is the renminbi - abbreviated to CNY or RMB. Yuan is a unit of renminbi; however Chinese currency is generally known as the ‘yuan’, particularly in countries outside of China.

The name 'renminbi' literally means 'peoples currency' and was first issued in 1948 when the People's Bank of China was established.

It's easily exchanged in Hong Kong and Macau but is not the official currency in those destinations.

The most commonly used bills for Chinese yuan are the 1, 5, 10, 20, 50 and 100 notes.

What to spend your yuan on:

  • *

    Admission to the Great Wall of China

    40 yuan *

  • *

    Tourist t-shirt

    30 yuan *

  • *

    Bottle of water

    3 yuan

  • *

    Postcard and a stamp

    5 yuan *

  • *

    3-mile taxi ride

    12.5 yuan *

How many yuan will I need?**

Please select your budget above.

- +
* * * * * *

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* * * * * *

Total spending money needed:

  • *A budget
  • *for people for
  • * nights


Must-See Places in China

  • Xi'an
  • This beautiful walled-city has plenty to explore. And what's more, just a short ride outside Xi'an lie the thousands of famous terracotta warriors.
  • Dali
  • Dali is nestled in the foothills of the Himalayas in Western China and is frequented by foreign and Chinese tourists alike. This a top spot for fans of mountain climbing.
  • Macau
  • The sister city to Hong Kong, Macau is steeped in a long and interesting history. It's also a gambling mecca for anyone who likes to hit the slots!

Buying Chinese yuan online is easy

Order Chinese yuan online, lock in the rate and collect at your local store, at the airport before you fly or have it delivered at home

  • 1. Click the ‘Buy yuan Now’ button below
  • And tell us how much you need for your trip.

  • 2. Choose how to get it
  • Get your currency home-delivered or choose to collect at more than 3,600 pick up locations.

  • 3. Pay online
  • Simply pay using either your debit card (recommended) or credit card and you’re all set!

Prefer to Buy in Store?

Prefer to Buy in Store?

If buying online is not your thing, visit your nearest Travelex store and one of our friendly sales consultants will help you organise yuan for your trip.

Find a Store

Travelling to China in the Future?

Travelling to China in the Future?

Track Rates and get notified when the yuan renminbi matches your ideal rate so you can decide if it’s a good time to buy!

Track Rates

China Travel Guide

China Travel Guide

Before you head off, check out our China Travel Guide to help you make the most of your trip, from home to get around to not-to-miss food experiences.


Read your reviews on trustpilot

Reasonable rates and ready availability

Reasonable rates and ready availability y

Noel Dyer

Quick and easy transaction and pickup

Quick and easy transaction and pickup

Leonie A

Travelex branch inside Qlinga Australia…

Travelex branch inside Qlinga Australia Post has the best service. Hats off to Manuel.

Melchor Barcelona

Easy to order online

Easy to order online, pick up was a bit slow but overall good experience

Josh B

Best rates and quick home delivery.

Best rates and quick home delivery.

Mark Rix

All went well!

All went well and received the money we ordered.

Leanne Reilly

Easy to understand and Secure

Easy to understand and Secure


Easy as

So easy to get foreign currency at a rate better than the Banks


fantastic rates however when purchasing…

fantastic rates however when purchasing large quantities I would have appreciated the biggest notes possible. Instead I got $245 in $5's $960 in $20"s and $2350 in $50's.I had ordered two lots of $3555 usd so as you can imagine it all doesn't fit in my wallet.


Good set up for having money available…

Good set up for having money available in any currency while you are overseas

Michele Cox

Safe and fast transactions.Good…

Safe and fast transactions.Good exchange rate.

Jose Walter Chan Abarca

Easy to use and delivered on time

Easy to use and delivered on time. Rates were best on offer.

Pamela Kerryn Oliver

Stress free and easy only thing was…

Stress free and easy only thing was large notes would be better to have some small notes

Mischell D Rogers

I find using Travelex to be the…

I find using Travelex to be the simplest, safest and fastest way to buy my overseas currency

James Beattle

Highly Recommend Travelex

Good rate Easy to purchase online Free pickup from my local Post Office


Travelex is rated 4 stars by Trustpilot based on over 7255 reviews

*Rates are subject to change throughout the day. In-store rates vary compared to online.

**The figures provided are indicative only and are there to provide an idea of the amount of travel money you may need during your trip.

Travelex Limited (ABN 36 004 179 953, AFSL Number 222444) arranges for and sells Online Foreign Currency via its Online Ordering Facility. You should consider the Online Foreign Currency Product Disclosure Statement and Terms and Conditions before deciding whether to acquire the product.