Local currencies and change
The local currency is the Pacific franc, abbreviated to CFP or XPF, pegged to the Euro at a fixed rate of exchange. International exchange rates apply to other currencies (dollars, sterling...).
The Pacific franc is tied to the euro at a fixed exchange rate. The current rate is:
- 1 euro = 119.3317 XPF
- 100 XPF = 0.838 euros
What denominations are local banknotes and coins?
New banknotes came into circulation in January 2014. Unlike the eurozone, where the euro is divided into 100 cents, the franc is the smallest local currency unit.
- Banknotes in circulation: 10,000 XPF - 5,000 XPF - 1,000 XPF - 500 XPF
- Coins in circulation: 100 XPF - 50 XPF - 20 XPF - 10 XPF - 5 XPF - 2 XPF - 1 XPF
Where can I get my Pacific francs?
Unless you go to the Bank of France, you won’t find any Pacific francs in France and you’re even more unlikely to find any in other countries.
So keep things simple: just withdraw some cash from the BNC or BCI branch ATMs on your arrival at the airport (if you have an ATM card) or go to the BCI foreign exchange office near the Cruise Ship Terminal if you’re a cruise ship passenger.
You’ll need proof of identity if you get your francs from the foreign exchange office. Commission charges depend on banks.
Most banks in Nouméa have foreign exchange counters in their downtown branches, open Monday to Friday from 7.30 a.m. to 3.45 p.m., except on bank holidays. Some branches also provide exchange services in the Bush.
You’ll find 24 hour currency exchange machines outside the following banks:
- BNP - 111 promenade Roger Laroque, Anse Vata, Noumea
- BCI - 55 promenade Roger Laroque, Baie des Citrons, Noumea
- BCI - 20 rue Anatole France, Downtown, Noumea
- BNC - In front of Casino Johnston supermarket, quai Jules Ferry, Noumea
Forget travellers cheques
Banks in New Caledonia no longer accept travellers cheques.
Payment by card
VISA and MASTERCARD cards are widely accepted in shops and stores. However, you should make sure you have a stock of cash if you’re travelling in the Bush (outside Greater Noumea) or in the islands (Loyalty Islands, Isle of Pines).
AMERICAN EXPRESS cards are fairly widely accepted in New Caledonia but you won’t be able to use your AMERICAN EXPRESS card to withdraw cash from an ATM.