Currency in Mauritius
While many travellers may want to use their pounds or dollars (or another type of foreign currency) while on holiday, the preferred currency in Mauritius is, in fact, the local currency, which is the Mauritian Rupee—the currency code of which is MUR with the symbol being ₨. Having said that, on rare occasions, foreign currencies are accepted but travellers risk losing out on the exchange rate and if change is required, it will likely be given in the local currency.
The Mauritian Rupee was inspired by the currency used in India. In the nineteenth century, once slavery had been abolished, Indians were brought to Mauritius as indentured labourers. With this influx of labourers from India came their currency—the Indian Rupee. The Indian Rupee was used in Mauritius for some time (along with the British Pound Sterling and the Mauritian Dollar) and served as the currency from which the Mauritian Rupee was born. The Mauritian Rupee became the official currency in Mauritius by law in 1876 and was in circulation by 1877.
The currency in Mauritius comes in the form of notes and coins. It’s available in the following denominations:
Notes: ₨ 25, ₨ 50, ₨ 100, ₨ 200, ₨ 500, ₨ 1,000, ₨ 2,000.
Coins: ₨ 1, ₨ 5, ₨ 10, ₨ 20.
For those who like to exchange their money for the local currency, this can be done at the international airport in Mauritius. You can keep an eye out for a reputable exchange bureau in Mauritius called Shibani Finance Co. Ltd or one of the Thomas Cook outlets for peace of mind when changing money. These bureaus are found throughout the island and generally offer better rates when you are exchange large amounts of money, but also better rates than you can normally get at banks or hotels. Passports are typically required for money exchanges so be sure to have yours on hand when you do so.
Another option would be to withdraw your Mauritian Rupees from any of the many ATMs on the island using your international credit, or in some cases, debit card. Always be vigilant when drawing money and ensure that your pin is protected from prying eyes.
Before you travel, remember that it’s best to chat with your bank regarding card usability and fees. The good news for those who don’t like to carry a lot of cash on them or who just prefer to keep it simple, is that most credit cards are accepted in Mauritius, namely Visa, MasterCard, Diners and American Express cards. Traveller’s cheques are fast becoming redundant, so it’s not recommended to try to use some old ones you may have while in Mauritius.
The amount of money that is required for a trip to Mauritius is largely based on your lifestyle, interests and budget. There’s no hard and fast rule of how much to bring or spend, but the exchange rate is generally in your favour which makes for a carefree holiday in the sun. Take a look at a currency converter to find the most up-to-date exchange rates for the currency in Mauritius.