New Barbados currency in circulation

Barbados’ new series of banknotes is in circulation from today.

The Central Bank of Barbados first announced the new series in April this year. At the time, it revealed that in addition to getting a design overhaul, the new notes would be made of polymer rather than the traditional cotton-based “paper” substrate.

In May, the Bank unveiled the new designs, which have a vertical rather than horizontal layout, larger portraits, and a cleaner, more modern look. The notes also feature raised marks to assist the visually impaired to differentiate between denominations.

“After more than two years of research and planning, we are extremely proud to be issuing Barbados’ new banknotes,” said Octavia Gibson, the Bank’s Director of Currency and Payments Oversight.

“Barbadians will find these notes easier to authenticate because the change to polymer has allowed us to incorporate bold, strong security features such as transparent windows and holograms. They will also find that the notes are more durable and will keep looking new for longer.”

Polymer is waterproof and doesn’t absorb moisture, dirt or grease. “If you spill a drink or food on your notes, all you have to do is wipe them off.”

Although the notes have gone into circulation, Gibson advised that not everyone would see them immediately. “We’ve begun to issue the notes to commercial banks and they will make them available to their customers through ATMs and at the counter, but it will likely be a few weeks before everyone gets one in their hand. There’s no need to be concerned if you don’t get some immediately. The older notes remain legal tender, so you can continue to spend them and businesses should continue to accept them.” (PR)

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