Indian Rupees - Exchange rates and planning holidays in India

What is Indian Rupee?

Going by the ₹ symbol, short INR, Indian Rupee is the official currency of India. It used to be divided into paise, but with the recent denomination, the lowest coin is simply 1 rupee. You can find the banknotes up to ₹2,000. However, most frequent are the lower values like 1, 2, 5 and ₹10.

Where else can I use INR?

The currency is being widely used in Bhutan, Nepal and Zimbabwe or Tibet. So if you happen to have some spare rupees in these countries, you might be able to spend or exchange them there.

Handling INR in India

Do I need to bring INR in cash to India?

There might be some restrictions connected to bringing Indian Rupees into the country. Moreover, you need to declare any amount of foreign cash above $5,000. Therefore, it’s best to withdraw cash from local ATMs using cash. Judging by tourists’ feedback it shouldn’t be a problem and the conversion rates are also more appealing than outside India. Moreover, cards are widely accepted in stores or restaurants, so you may not even need too much physical cash in your pockets. It’s always safer to travel without excess cash.

Where to exchange my currency to INR?

Indian ATMs will get you the best rates. However, you need to be aware of potential withdrawal fees. Therefore, it’s best to check with your bank or card provider, as everyone has different costs for withdrawing from foreign ATMs.

You should also be able to pick up some change at the airport to pay for a taxi or few goods at the local market.

Be careful with suspicious or “free” currency conversions. The service may in fact be free of charge. However, the exchange rates may differ from the official ones, so for example instead of exchanging $1 to 71 rupees, you will get only 65INR, because of marked up exchange rates, It also applies to any remittance and online money transfer services, which offer cheap transfers to India. You can check the current and best rates on our platform or simply do a quick Google search to make sure you are not being cheated by the currency converter.

Travel expenses in India

Based on the data from travel agencies and travellers’ experience, you will spend each day $30 on average. It includes transportation costs, hostels and food.

A budget of 700-1500INR is enough to find a clean hostel room, maybe even with breakfast included. If you are a bit more adventurous and want to cut costs on accommodation, you can try shared-rooms and budget hostels. However, cleanliness and safety may be a concern.

Meals may cost you 468INR per day. For that price you can easily try some street local food, but also eat at regular restaurant.

A regular taxi ride is quite expensive compared to other countries, so you need to devote at least 243INR per day to move around the cities. Trains are the most popular to travel longer distances in India. Within a city, local tuk-tuks or rickshaws are way to go.

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