San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Old banknotes lose their value from January 1

Beginning January 1, Ticos can pay only using the new bills introduced by the Central Bank of Costa Rica (BCCR).

“As for this Tuesday Jan. 1 and until April 30, 2013, old bills can only be redeemed at branches and agencies of local banks,” said the BCCR in a press release. From May 1,  the old banknotes may be exchanged only at the BCCR offices.

This measure completes the transition in which all Costa Rica’s banknotes were renewed. Last August the BCCR introduced new ₡5,000 and ₡10,000 bills, the last two of the “new family.”

Central Bank in 2010 began phasing out the old bills and put into circulation new ₡1,000, ₡2,000 and ₡20,000 banknotes.

All include security features to prevent counterfeiting, such as translucent watermarks, color-changing shapes and textured images.

They also have features that facilitate recognition by the visually impaired.

Contact L. Arias at

Comments are closed.