Prague tourists will usually get a superior exchange rate in Prague, for the Czech Crown, than they would in their native country, but the guidelines below ought to be noted. Should you be travelling from the United Kingdom, lots of people exchange pounds into Euros in advance of their trip. This is not required though, because you can exchange pounds directly in many of the recommended currency exchange bureaus in Prague, that offer no commission and the smallest possible margins between the currencies bought and sold. Another option is to just take your Czech Crowns out of an ATM cash-point. These ATM’s accept every major credit and debit card, like EC/Mastercard, Visa, Visa Electron, American Express and Maestro. It varies depending on the bank that issues the cards, but you usually get quite a decent rate of exchange, even though your credit card company will probably charge you a modest processing fee.
Normally, banks offer a good rate of exchange, but they don’t open usually in the evenings or over week-ends, and they charge a 1% or 2% fee for commission. Exchanging in hotels is possibly the worst choice, because they offer a poor rate of exchange. Nonetheless, smaller Euro quantities do not generally pose a problem, at virtually any time of night or day, to exchange in a hotel. The bureaux de change have quite big variations between each other. For instance, some bureaux de change will not apply a charge for exchanging, but they do not provide a very good rate of exchange, whereas some will apply a very high commission charge, but they will offer a superior rate of exchange. The best plan is to ask first what amount of money you will receive, and work the real exchange rate out for yourself.
The Crown is the official currency, which is comprised of one hundred Hellers. Small coins begin at a one Crown coin, then the two Crown, five Crown, ten Crown, twenty Crown and fifty Crown coins follow. Banknotes start with the one hundred crown note, then the two hundred, five hundred, one thousand, two thousand and five thousand crown notes follow.