A look at the local currency of Belarus (the Belarusian ruble), where to access cash, and how to use bank cards and travelers cheques
The Belarusian ruble, the local currency of Belarus, is not a fully convertible currency, so you won’t be able to get any before you arrive in the country.
The official currency of the Republic of Belarus was redenominated on 1 July 2016. Existing notes (called the 2000 series) will be exchanged for new ones (called the 2009 series) at a rate of 10,000:1.
From 1 July 2016 to 31 December 2016 the currency units of the 2000 series and the currency units of the 2009 series (9 banknotes from Br100 to Br200,000) will be used simultaneously.
Banknotes of the 2000 series can be exchanged for the banknotes of the 2009 series without restrictions and additional fees in the period from 1 January 2017 to 31 December 2019 at the National Bank, banks and non-bank credit and financial institutions of the Republic of Belarus. In the period from 1 January 2020 to 31 December 2021 they can be exchanged at the National Bank.
Before the redenomination of 2016 there were no coins in circulation in the history of sovereign Belarus. However, since 1996, the National Bank of Belarus has produced commemorative coins that are of interest to coin collectors and are a legal tender. Coins made of gold, silver and copper nickel alloy depict various themes, historical events and famous people.
There are a large number of exchange offices in all cities in Belarus. These are most often found at:
You can also change money at most banks and there are a growing number of ATM machines in Belarus, particularly in Minsk.
The most commonly accepted currencies at exchange offices and banks are:
In Belarus, especially in Minsk, there are many ATMs where you can withdraw money. You can find an ATM in any bank office, supermarket or shopping mall.
Bank cards are widely used in Belarus. You can use them in shops, hotels, restaurants and self-service kiosks.
The most widespread international payment systems in Belarus are Visa and MasterCard.
Online payment systems are also available in Belarus.
American Express traveler's checks are no longer sold or redeemed in Belarus.
As there are no coins in Belarus, tokens and cards are widely used instead:
Special plastic cards and tokens are used in the Metro and can be bought at any station.
Public payphones take smart cards, which are widely available from newspaper kiosks.
Coffee machines accept notes.
Tokens for vending machines can be bought at newsstands.