In Ghana they use the currency called “cedi”. Using another currency than your own can be confusing, so in this article we are going to talk about where to get this “cedi”, the payment options in Ghana and everything else you need to know about money in Ghana.
Cedis and pesewas
The currency in Ghana is “cedi”, and one cedi is hundred pesewas. There are banknotes of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 cedi (ghs), and coins of 1, 5, 10, 20 and 50 pesewas (gp) and 1 cedi. At this moment one cedi is 0,17 eurocent. Check out a currency converter to stay up to date.
You will find out (especially if you are not in a city) that paying with 50 cedi is going to be difficult sometimes. Most people don’t have change if you give them such an amount, so always try to save up your smaller notes and bills. In public transportation it is highly appreciated if you pay in exact money, as well as if you buy something from street vendors while you are in a vehicle. Those situations can be very chaotic (for example when you buy water while waiting for a traffic light, you have to get your change before the light turns into green) and you want to make it yourself and the vendor as easy as possible.
At stores (in bigger towns/cities), hotels and restaurants you can try to break your big notes. Unfortunately ATMs often give out the 50 cedi banknotes, so this will be a struggle all the time.
Currency exchange and ATMs
Depending on your own currency and the transfer fee from your bank and the bank in Ghana you have to consider to bring banknotes to Ghana or use the ATMs. When you decide to bring notes and change them make sure you go to an official exchange office (for example the one at the airport, on your right hand when you leave the arrival hall).
In Ghana you can find ATMs in most places, but have in mind not all will accept your bank card or will be working all the time. Before you travel to somewhere we recommend you to find a bank on Google Maps. Most hotels only accept cash, so make sure you have enough with you.
You don’t necessarily need a credit card in Ghana, even it can be useful since sometimes you can pay by credit card in a hotel or restaurant. Also for some hotels you need to make reservation by credit card. If you don’t have a credit card, but a debit card (maestro) your card is accepted at the following banks:
- Ghana Commercial Bank
- Stanbic Bank
- Societe Generale Bank
Mobile Money (MTN)
MoMo is a similar system as a bank. All you need is a MTN sim card (MTN is a phone provider), and activate your mobile money wallet. You can change your own currency or use an ATM to get cedies, and load them into your MoMo account at a MTN office.
If you need your money you go to a MTN office (not necessarily the same are where you loaded your money) and you will get it. This is useful to avoid high transfer costs at banks, is a safe way to store money and an easy way to avoid out of cash moments when you are not near an ATM.
MoMo is also a payment method you sometimes can use in restaurants, hotels and for buying an event ticket.
Note: It is only possible to open an account with a resident permit
While travelling with us (including a guide!), you don’t need to worry about money so much. We will pay your hotel bookings in advance and take care of your payments for public transportation (or car rental) and entrances fees. You will only need money for optional entrances, your meals and drinks and things like souvenirs.