Czech Republic

The currency of the Czech republic is the koruna crown, plural koruny or korun. The currency code CZK is often used internationally, but the local symbol is Kč for koruna česká. 1 koruna is made up of 100 haléřů hellers, nominative plural haléře, singular haléř, abbreviated to hal. but coins are only issued in whole koruna values from October 2008 on and all prices are rounded to the nearest koruna when paying in cash.

The exchange rate is approximately 1€ = 26,84 Kč, £1 GBP = 37,9 Kč, $1 US = 24,4 Kč, $1 CAD = 19,4 Kč July 2015.

Coins are issued in 1 Kč, 2 Kč, 5 Kč all stainless steel, 10 Kč copper-colored, 20 Kč brass-colored and 50 Kč copper-colored ring, brass-colored center. Notes are issued in 100 Kč aqua, 200 Kč orange, 500 Kč red, 1000 Kč purple, 2000 Kč olive green and 5000 Kč green-purple. See some banknote samples (http://www.cnb.cz/en/czec...). Be aware that all 50 Kč and 20 Kč banknotes, haléř coins, and older-style 1000 Kč and 5000 Kč banknotes from 1993 are nomore a legal tender the 20 Kč banknotes are however quite popular with collectors and therefore more expensive then their face value.

Some major stores mainly bigger chains will accept Euros, and it's also fairly common for accommodation providers to quote the price in Euros. At shopping areas along the Austrian border and petrol stations in the whole country change is given in Euros, but supermarkets and similar stores in downtown Prague and probably other cities return only Kč, even though they accept €.

Never exchange money on the street, it is illegal and usually scam you may easily end up with fake or foreign banknotes. Also, if you're in Prague, don't exchange it in the banks. The "real" exchange rate you should be looking for can be found here (http://www.exchange.cz/in...). Be very careful when you are exchanging money at a small exchange kiosk. Some of them try to use tricks in order to give you a bad exchange rate eg. the displayed very good exchange rates are valid for transactions over CZK 50,000 / 2000€ only. Ask for the total amount you will get and recompute it by yourself. Beware that once you give them your money, it is legally a binding offer and it is very hard to cancel the transaction if you don't have strong arguments that they cheated. Do not trust "0% commission" in big letters signs either, often there is an "only when selling CZK" amendment in small letters and buying CZK still includes a commision. On this (http://kurzy.fin.cz/kurzy...) website you can get good overview of reliable exchange places and rates.

Generally, exchange offices at the airport, rail stations and main tourist streets do not offer a good rate. Local people exchange money in exchange offices in less frequented areas, such as around the "Politických vězňů", "Opletalova" or "Kaprova" streets. In some cases, one can get a better rate by using ATMs instead of changing cash.

Major stores and petrol stations throughout the country accept chip+PIN or contact-less Visa and EC/MC, as do all the tourist stores in Prague. Stripe cards are usually still fine but their acceptance is declining.

Prague is really very cheap. Compared with other European major cities such as Paris, Rome, London, Munich, Barcelona, Venice, etc. it is the best city in appreciation of historical monuments, great original architecture, culture and art. It is almost half the cost as in the above cities.