About the New Zealand Dollar
Yes, you read that correctly: the currency in Niue is actually the New Zealand Dollar also known as “NZD” or “NZ$”. Niue is a self-governing state of about 1,500 people in association with New Zealand. As the cost for Niue to have its own currency would be astronomical, it uses New Zealand’s instead. But with a bit of Niuean fun thrown in with it of course…
In this guide to the currency of Niue, we will go over money tips, currency exchange, the tax system, the banking system and even the money culture in Niue so you know what to expect when it comes to your money in Niue.
What are the Niue Coins?!
Although the legal tender of Niue is New Zealand Dollars, the country has been known to issue some of its own coins, some more “creative” than others…
That’s right, Niue does not take itself too seriously and its legal tender is also subjected to the local spirit from time to time. For instance, in 2001, Niue introduced a limited series of Pokemon $1 coins as legal tender sending the world into a frenzy over the highly collectable copper-nickel coins. In 2002, they were at it again when the $10 Mewtwo Pokemon coin was released!
In 2011, Niue released an official issue of Star Wars coins depicting main characters rendered in colour, adding to the line of wacky coins issued over the years.
Visitors can take a look and even purchase some of Niue’s collectable coins and stamps at the Niue Philatelic & Numismatic office in the Swanson Complex.
Niue Currency Values
Niue uses New Zealand Dollars and Cents. Prices in Niue are usually written as a dollar symbol ($), while internationally, the currency is displayed as “NZD” or “NZ$“. For Cents, the symbol for cents (¢) may be used. 100 Cents equals one Dollar.
New Zealand Coins
New Zealand Dollar coins come in values of 10¢, 20¢, 50¢, $1 and $2.
New Zealand Bank Notes
New Zealand Dollar notes come in values of $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100.
Niue Currency Culture
In this section, we will cover a few aspects of the money culture in Niue as a couple of things may be different from back home.
Tipping in Niue
Although it is always appreciated, tipping is not mandatory in Niue. Tipping is mostly reserved for outstanding service and it is absolutely up to you to decide to tip and to choose the value of your tip. Check out Niue Tipping & Tax Guide for Travellers for more information.
Cash or Card?
Most stores, restaurants and accommodations in Niue accept foreign credit and debit cards as long as they have a four-digit PIN encoded and are Visa or MasterCard. Most also accept New Zealand debit cards. There are some minor instances where you’ll only be able to pay with cash, such as at markets and to some tour operators. You can, however, make withdrawals of New Zealand Dollars using cashback services at Kiwibank, Swanson Supermarket, Niue Rentals and the Bond Store.
Learn more about how to pay using our guide, What is the Best Way to Pay in Niue?
Swedish Rounding/Cash Rounding
Because the smallest coin that the New Zealand Dollar offers is 10 cents, all prices will be rounded up or down to the nearest 10 cents. If you use a bank card, Swedish rounding does not happen, as you will pay the exact price.
Currency Exchange in Niue
With the exception of one place where you can exchange US and Australian currency, you will not be able to exchange currency in Niue. You must bring New Zealand Dollars or use your credit or debit card to withdraw cash from the bank or one of the stores offering a cashback service. Again, there is no ATM in Niue, so this will be an over-the-counter transaction. Luckily, the only flight to Niue takes off from the Auckland International Airport which has multiple exchange facilities.
However, since exchanging money in airports usually yields the worst exchange rates, you can plan ahead and buy New Zealand Dollars ahead of time. Luckily, the New Zealand Dollar is a widely available currency all around the world.
There are no restrictions on how much cash you can bring into Niue, but you will need to declare, complete a cash reporting form and pay duty on more than NZ$10,000 through Customs. Find out more in What to Declare When Arriving in Niue.
Where to Exchange Currency in Niue
It is possible to exchange US Dollars and Australian Dollars at Niue Rentals (Alofi North). They do not exchange any other currencies.
What are the Exchange Rates Like for the New Zealand Dollar?
The New Zealand Dollar has quite an advantageous exchange rate when compared to the US, Canadian or Australian Dollar, so if exchanging from these currencies, your holiday just got a little cheaper.
Banking and ATMs in Niue
It’s simple: 1 bank, 0 ATMs, 32 teeth-filled smiles! Niue lives at a different pace and as such, the country does not have a complex banking system.
The one bank in Niue is a branch of Kiwibank, one of the leading banks in New Zealand.
It is located in the Alofi Commercial Centre and opens from 8:30 am to 4 pm on weekdays.
Kiwibank in Niue only accepts transactions from Visa, MasterCard or New Zealand EFTPOS cards. There is a NZ$2 fee for cash withdrawals using a New Zealand debit card and a 5% fee when using a credit card.
Kiwibank does not offer currency exchange and does not feature an ATM, so you will need to go to the counter to ask to withdraw cash.
Taxes on Goods and Services
There are a limited number of taxes in Niue that are likely to affect visitors, including the Niue Consumption Tax (NCT) and the Departure Tax.
Niue Consumption Tax
All Niue purchases of goods and services are subject to the NCT. The Niue Consumption Tax is 12.5% and is usually included in the price. In most cases, the price that you see is the price that you will pay for your goods or services. In the unlikely event that the Niue Consumption Tax is not included in the price, you will see the mention “+NCT” next to the price which means that you need to add 12.5% to this price to know how much you will pay.
Note that NCT may also be displayed as “GST”.
The Niue Departure Tax is included in your flight ticket price and is not collected at the airport. International passengers aged 12 years and over are charged NZ$150 for Departure Tax from Niue.
Learn more about the tax system in the Niue Tipping & Tax Guide for Travellers.
More About the Currency of Niue
That’s it for our guide to the currency of Niue but that’s by no means the end of our money advice! Check out the following guides for more tips:
Finally, head to the Niue Travel Budget: How Much Does a Trip to Niue Cost? for its full budget overview or The Budget & Backpacking Guide to Niue for more advice.