The islands and nations of the Caribbean are always appearing on lists of the best vacation destinations, and it's very easy to see why. These incredible island havens get some of the hottest temperatures and longest periods of sunshine on Earth. Not only that, they also tend to have some of the best beaches and most pristine and gorgeous scenery too. Puerto Rico is a wonderful example.
A Caribbean island that is also a territory of the United States, Puerto Rico is famed for its lush rainforests, magical waterfalls, stunning beaches, vibrant cities, and interesting heritage. It's a special place with lots to offer, drawing in many visitors each and every year. Plus, since Puerto Rico is a US territory, American citizens can visit this Caribbean island very easily. Here’s all you need to know about the currency in Puerto Rico.
Official Currency in Puerto Rico
If you’ve ever asked “What currency do they use in Puerto Rico?” the answer is very simple: the official currency in this Caribbean island is actually the United States dollar. Since Puerto Rico is a territory of the United States, it uses the same currency. You might, however, hear the locals refer to their money as the 'peso', rather than the dollar.
The US dollar is the most traded and used currency on the planet and the biggest reserve currency too. A single US dollar is broken down into 100 cents, and there are various coins and notes used in the US dollar system. The symbol for this currency is $ and the dollar is also used in some Central American countries, as well as other locations around the Caribbean and beyond.
Coins and Notes in Puerto Rico
You’ll find the following coins being used in Puerto Rico:
- 1 cent
- 5 cents
- 10 cents
- 25 cents
- 50 cents
- 1 dollar
These coins are also known as the penny, the dime, the nickel, the quarter, the half, and the dollar coin or golden dollar. All of the coins used in Puerto Rico and the United States are circular and they’re decorated with pictures of past presidents and historical figures. They’re also clearly marked with their monetary value and are made with different metals to make it easier to tell them apart.
You can also use the following US dollar notes in Puerto Rico:
The currency system in Puerto Rico is identical to what you’ll find in the United States, so any American visitors heading to Puerto Rico won’t need to worry about getting money converted. All of the notes used in the US dollar system are clearly labeled with their value, as well as being decorated with pictures of buildings, presidents, and symbols.
Using Credit Cards in Puerto Rico
Like the United States, Puerto Rico is a very card-friendly place. Credit and debit cards are used on this Caribbean island on a daily basis by both the locals and visitors. You can use all major cards like Mastercard, Visa, and American Express with ease on Puerto Rico. You’ll also find lots of ATMs around the island.
Using Other Currencies in Puerto Rico
You may find that some places in Puerto Rico will accept Canadian dollars, but in general, the US dollar is the only accepted currency and you won’t get too far by trying to pay for goods and services with other forms of money.
Tips for Currency in Puerto Rico
If you’re heading to Puerto Rico, these tips will help you make the most of every dollar you spend:
- American travelers don't need to worry too much about going to Puerto Rico as the money is the same and many of the ATMs will be linked to the same banks you use at home.
- Traveler’s checks are accepted at some locations around Puerto Rico but are less and less common all around the world.
- It’s a good idea to keep some cash on your person in case you’d like to buy something from a street vendor or someone else who doesn’t accept card payments.
- Pickpockets sometimes operate around touristic areas on Puerto Rico, so be cautious and keep your cash and cards as safe and secure as possible.
- If you’re traveling to Puerto Rico as a non-US citizen, it’s a good idea to get some US dollars before you arrive just to cover the costs of transport over to your hotel or resort.
- Non-US citizens may also have to pay charges for using their cards in Puerto Rico or accessing ATMs, so be aware of these charges and speak to your bank before you go to get an idea of how much you’ll have to pay.