You Buy Things with Won in South Korea

Here in South Korea, of course people are using their native currency. Currency for South Korea is Won (원) (sign: ; code: KRW).  Now the exchange rate between Won and Dollar is skirting around 1100 Won for 1 USD. For Won and Rupiah, the exchange rate is around  8 Rupiah for 1 Won. From Wikipedia:

“Won” is a cognate of the Chinese yuan and Japanese yen. All three names derive from the Hanja (원), which means “round shape.” The won was subdivided into 100 jeon (Hangul: 전; Hanja: 錢; RR: jeon; MR: chŏn), which means “money”, a word of Hanja origin referring to the bronze and copper coins of old.

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The coins available in the market now is ₩10, ₩50, ₩100, ₩500 and banknotes are ₩1000, ₩5000, ₩10000, ₩50000. ₩10 and ₩50 so far in my experience are only being used in supermarket change. Things priced in 100s range are so rare, maybe only a few such as candies, cds, and such. Mostly, cheapest price range is 1000-1500 Won. So, if you want souvenir from South Korea, you can consider the coins…

PC160546

Similar design, different reaction

Anyway, I prepare some Korean Won from relatives before I came here, but, when I pay something, the seller will murmur with delight whenever I pay with those money. It turns out that the money that I brought were the 1983-2002 ones. They changed the design back in 2006-2007 for safety reason. The money is still considered legal banknote, but already so rare that people usually collect it.

In the end, if you have the old money, you can consider giving it to your South Korean friends or bring it when you visit South Korea. It will surely expedite your souvenir-buying.

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