Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: What currency should I take to Croatia?
Simon Calder’s career in travel started at Gatwick Airport, where he cleaned aircraft for Laker Airways and later worked as a security officer. He became The Independent’s Travel Correspondent in 1994, and is known as “the Man Who Pays His Way” because he does not accept free travel facilities. He writes across the Independent titles, as well as for the Evening Standard.
Friday 09 August 2013
Q I am off to Croatia in a few days and wonder whether, for spending in restaurants and shops, I should take euros or kuna with me bearing in mind Croatia have recently joined the euro. I am taking euros to pay for accommodation but have heard that most shops etc would rather accept kuna. Can you advise please?
Maria Kernott, Colchester
A Maria, it's a common misapprehension that when a nation joins the EU it immediately adopts the euro - with the notable exception of Britain. Croatia joined the EU last month. In fact, while there is a general assumption that most countries will sign up eventually, Croatia remains firmly committed to the currency it has had since the break-up of Yugoslavia: the kuna. Similarly, Denmark, Sweden and the Czech Republic retain their respective versions of the crown.
True, some hotels in Croatia and other non-euro nations quote rates in the single currency, and you can if you wish pay in euros. But every other trader is likely to want only local currency. So take sterling cash to change in Croatia (you'll get a better rate there than you will in the UK).
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