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Advice on cash

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canberra, australia
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Advice on cash

My husband and I are going to Vanuatu next week for the first time.

I'm a bit unsure how much I should have converted before I go. Is it wise to have all of my holiday spending money converted before we leave, or is it easy enough to once we are over there? And are credit cards accepted at many places?


Hobart, Australia
Destination Expert
for Vanuatu
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3,532 posts
101 reviews
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1. Re: Advice on cash

HI ErinP1

You are much better to take cash and convert once you get to Vanuatu. Don't do it at the Sydney airport - complete rip off. Do a search and have a look at other comments on this forum. There is also a Westpac and ANZ there you can withdraw from their bank machines - also credit cards are widely accepted but mostly for an extra fee. We found it easy to keep our money in the hotel safe and change what we needed every few days. There is no fee to change you money at Goodies in Vanuatu – unlike ANZ in Sydney who want $7:00!



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2. Re: Advice on cash

Suzie's right - convert it when you get there. It depends if you plan on eating out all the time or doing some shopping as to how much you need. We allowed $100 each per day and didn't spend it all. We shopped a bit for food and ate out most nights for dinner, and drank a fair bit. If you are going to any outer islands most don't have ATM's, so change cash in Vila before you go, although we found remote resorts would take AU dollars or VISA.

Travellers checks are also another option if you are concerned about carrying a lot of cash. Most money changers take them as well.

Have a great time..

Brisbane, Australia
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for Vanuatu, Port Vila, Espiritu Santo
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3. Re: Advice on cash

HI Erin,

Also be aware that some smaller banks and building society funds are not accessible in Vanuautu.

We find the easiest thing to do is take Aussie cash and convert it at Goodies at the earliest opportunity. If you land on a Sunday you can change it at the 7 Eleven. Both Goodies and the 7 Eleven are downtown toward the airport end of the main street. Look for the El Gecko outdoor boardwalk cafe eating area and Goodies is right next door.

Do keep it in the safe in your room if you are staying at a resort. The safes are easy to operate.

We found credit card fees and bank fees to be a bit steep so this is why we take cash. Don't bother converting it here, you'll get a crummy conversion rate and they'll put a charge on top of it as well.

There is a National Bank of Vanuatu office at the airport where you can change a little bit of cash if you require it for a taxi or bus to your accommodation.

Hope this helps,


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4. Re: Advice on cash

Just back yesterday, we took a little ($100) that we got exchanged here so that we could catch bus etc. The exchange rate was poor. When in Vila we exchanged money at shops run by chinese as directed by our bus drivers. We always got a better rate than Goodies by about 3 Vatu.

5. Re: Advice on cash

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