Compare Chinese Yuan Exchange Rates

Compare our latest Chinese Yuan rates from top travel money providers and find the best deals for your holiday spending.

Travel FX
Pay by Credit card, debit card & bank transfer
Customer rating 4.9 out of 5
Currencies 60+
The Currency Club
Pay by Debit card & bank transfer
Customer rating 4.7 out of 5
Currencies 50+
Post Office Travel Money
Pay by Cash, credit card & debit card
Customer rating 3.4 out of 5
Currencies 60
Compare Holiday Money
Pay by Credit card, debit card, bank transfer & cash
Customer rating 4 out of 5
Currencies 72

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Finding the best Chinese yuan rate for you

By Laura Rettie, Personal Finance Journalist.

Laura Rettie

When looking for travel money, you want to make sure you're getting the best deal. See the latest Chinese yuan exchange rates and get the best deal for your next trip.

Where can I use Chinese yuan?

The official currency of China is the renminbi, and the Chinese yuan (CNY) is the unit of the currency, but the terms are used interchangeably; a good comparison is how the UK uses pounds, but the overall name for the UK currency is sterling. China is the only country to use the Chinese yuan as its currency.

Can I order Chinese yuan online?

You can order Chinese yuan online from several providers, with the option of having them delivered or picking them up from a local branch or the airport you're travelling from. You'll often find the best deals from online providers, especially when compared to the kiosks on the high street or in airports.

Remember, it's worth shopping around and using a comparison site like ours to see all your options and guarantee you're getting a good deal.

Should I buy Chinese yuan before I leave?

It's a good idea to travel to take some yuan with you when travelling to China; whilst you should be able to find ATMs and shops that accept credit and debit cards in the major cities, this is far less likely in rural areas. You will also be able to exchange money in your hotel, but the exchange rates are likely to be less competitive.

Using your card abroad can be an expensive option, depending on your bank or card provider's foreign transaction fees and the exchange rates on offer.

If you're a regular traveller or just dislike the idea of carrying around significant amounts of cash, it might be a good idea to consider a prepaid travel card or, alternatively, a travel credit card. These are designed to be used abroad and will often come with low fees and the best exchange rates.

What can I do with my leftover CNY?

No matter how hard you try, knowing how much money to take on holiday can be tricky, and we've all returned from a trip with leftover foreign currency.

Luckily, several providers will now offer a buyback guarantee. This is where they promise to buy back any CNY you have left after your holiday for the same exchange rate you purchased it for.

How many Chinese yuan can I take with me?

When travelling into China, you can carry with you 20,000 yuan or foreign currency worth over 5000 US Dollars without having to make a declaration; this is the same when you leave China.

What denominations does the Chinese yuan come in?

Each Chinese yuan is divided into 10 Jaio, and each Jaio is divided into 10 fen. Whilst there may still be fen coins in circulation in China, they are now virtually worthless, so you're unlikely to see them used. The banknotes you'll see in China are:

  • 1 jiao
  • 2 jiao
  • 5 jiao
  • 1 yuan
  • 2 yuan
  • 5 yuan
  • 10 yuan
  • 20 yuan
  • 50 yuan
  • 100 yuan

You can also get coins for 1, 2, and 5 jiao; these are far more common than their paper note counterparts. There are also 1 yuan coins.

The information provided does not constitute financial advice, it’s always important to do your own research to ensure a financial product is right for your circumstances. If you’re unsure you should contact an independent financial advisor.

Frequently asked questions

Can I buy travel money with my credit card?

You are able to buy travel money with a credit card, but exchanging currency is often treated like a cash withdrawal and so could end up being costly. It's usually better to buy currencies with a debit card.

Is it safe to order travel money online?

You'll often find the best exchange rates when ordering currency online. Like with any online transaction, though, you do need to be careful. As long as you order from a reputable provider, buying currencies online is completely safe. It's a good idea to compare your options, read customer reviews and make sure you use a reliable service.