Bhutan currency
Bhutan currency
Comparison between Bhutan and Indian Currency

The first necessity for planning a vacation to Bhutan is to have a basic understanding of its currency. 

Your journey will be challenging if you don’t have the necessary information regarding the Bhutan currency. 

Your bags are packed, and your mood is set, but if you forget to transfer your currency into theirs, you will hardly survive there! 

So, in between your task of booking a tour operator and flight tickets, take some time to learn about the Bhutan currency. 

To make your travels more convenient, here is all the information about the Bhutan currency.

We will also compare Bhutan currency with Indian Rupee (INR) to make life easier for our fellow Indian travelers. 

This blog includes:

  • What is the Bhutanese currency? 
  • What is the Indian Currency?
  • What’s the Difference Between Bhutan and Indian Currency?
  • Is Indian currency higher than Bhutan’s? 
  • Indian Rupee (Rs) to Bhutanese Ngultrum (Nu)
  • Can Tourists Travel to Bhutan with Indian Currency?
  • Bhutan Currency Exchange Rate
  • Foreign Currency Exchange Locations in Bhutan
  • ATM and Credit Card Services
  • Final Thoughts

What is the Bhutan currency? 

Bhutan Currency
Bhutan Currency (Nu, BTN)

Bhutan’s local and officially recognized currency is the Ngultrum (Nu, BTN). BTN is the currency code, while Nu is the symbol. 

It is employed in all economic trades, both professional and local. 

1 BTN equals 100 Chetrums (it is the cents for Bhutanese currency). 

Bhutan Currency Notes

Bhutan Currency
Bhutan Currency Notes

Bhutan’s currency notes are BTN 1, BTN 5, BTN 10, BTN 20, BTN 50, BTN 100, BTN 500, and BTN 1000. 

In some countries, all currency denominations are the same size. This makes it difficult for people with visual impairments to discern between denominations. 

But, the size of banknotes differs in Bhutan, which can make money identification easier based on the variance in note sizes. The note’s size gradually gets bigger from currency note 1 to 1000.

The notes are inscribed with information on Bhutanese culture. The note’s backside features a Dzong image. 

For example, there is a portrait of Ugyen Wangchuk (The First King) with a Raven Crown on the front of a BTN 500 note. The backside depicts the magnificent Punakha Dzong. 

All value notes follow this pattern, each featuring a different image.

What is the Indian Currency?

Bhutan currency
Indian Currency

India’s national currency is the Rupee (Rs, INR). The Rupee is divisible by 100 paise, with 1 rupee coin being the lowest denomination. 

Indian Currency Notes

Bhutan Currency
Indian Currency Notes

Indian currency notes are in 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 500, and 2,000 rupees. 

On the back of paper rupees, denominations are printed in 15 languages, while on the front side, denominations are printed in Hindi and English.

The banknotes are often printed with new designs, with notable distinctions between the old Mahatma Gandhi Series and the new ones bearing the same name. 

What’s the Difference Between Bhutan and Indian Currency?

The value of the Indian and Bhutan money is the same, although the currency is different for the two countries as it should be!

Thus,


1 Ngultrum = 1 Indian Rupees

The difference between the two currencies is the images and the depiction of their rich heritage in the paper notes! 

The front of Bhutan’s paper notes has an image of any of the five kings, and the back features a picture of a Dzong (fortress) of various districts. 

Indian currency features Mahatma Gandhi on the front and the National emblem (four lions) at the back. 

Is Indian currency higher than Bhutan’s? 

Bhutan Currency
The value of Indian Rupees equals Bhutan currency, Ngultrum.

No, the currency value of Bhutan is the same as Indian Rupees. So, Bhutan accepts the Indian currency, the Rupee, because it is closely tied to India. 

Indian Rupee (Rs) to Bhutanese Ngultrum (Nu)

INR (Rs)BTN (Nu)
1 INR1 BTN
5 INR5 BTN
10 INR10 BTN
20 INR20 BTN
50 INR50 BTN
100 INR100 BTN
500 INR500 BTN
1000 INR1000 BTN

Can Tourists Travel to Bhutan with Indian Currency?

Yes, tourists can visit any place in Bhutan carrying Indian currency, except the higher value note INR 2000. 

Some places may not accept other higher-value notes like INR 500 and 1000 because of counterfeit issues. So, it’s best to use the official Bhutan currency for higher-value transactions.

Rest assured, Indian travelers can explore the country’s nooks and corners using Indian Rupees! 

Arrange some INR, bear a government-issued ID, a passport, or voter’s ID, and you are all set for your trip to Bhutan. 

Bhutan Currency Exchange Rate

Bhutan currency has a comparable exchange rate to the Indian Rupee. The currency value of Bhutan is floating rather than being fixed. 

It is determined by several factors, including Bhutan currency demand and supply, foreign currency demand and supply, and interest rates.

At the moment, 

 77.51 BTN = 1 US Dollar

82.90 BTN = 1 Euro

Foreign Currency Exchange Locations in Bhutan

Bhutan currency
Exchange Bhutan currency at the Paro Airport or Bank of Bhutan

You can exchange foreign currencies for the Bhutan currency at the Paro International Airport’s foreign exchange desk.

You can exchange US Dollar, Pound Sterling, Euro, Japanese Yen, Swiss Franc, Hong Kong Dollar, Canadian Dollar, Danish Kroner, Australian Dollar, Singapore Dollars, and Indian Rupees for Ngultrum. 

Otherwise, you can also go to the Bank of Bhutan (BOB) to exchange foreign currencies. 

A few hotels offer foreign exchange services at the front desk. However, they are few, and most of them only swap US dollars for Ngultrum.

After exchanging foreign currency notes in any of the locations mentioned above, you can travel anywhere in the country.

ATM and Credit Card Services

Bhutan Currency
Keep cash in your pocket because most Bhutanese merchants accept only cash

Thimphu and Paro, the main cities of Bhutan have several ATM facilities placed in strategic locations. You can withdraw cash in Ngultrum to spend on your expenses. 

Cash is almost a must-have for tourists in Bhutan because merchants do not take credit cards or cheques. 

Cash is the most generally accepted method of payment. Credit cards are only accepted in hotels, resorts, and showrooms selling expensive handicrafts.

However, you can use rupees in cash to pay for hotels and shops if you come from India. Indian Rupee, except INR 2000, is widely accepted in the country!  

Final Thoughts

The official Bhutan currency is Ngultrum (Nu), and the Indian currency is Rupees. Both the currencies have the same value in the global economy, which is 1 Ngultrum equals 1 Rupee.

If you travel to Bhutan from India, you can use Rupees for your expenditure in the country.  

You can also exchange Bhutan currency at the Paro Airport foreign exchange desk and Bank of Bhutan in Thimphu and Paro town. 

Bhutan also has ATM facilities to withdraw cash. However, banking and ATM facilities become fewer and rarer as you travel deeper into the country (rural areas). So, it’s better to do your banking in Paro or Thimphu and bring local cash to the countryside. 

Visit Norbu Bhutan’s website and contact our experts if you have any questions regarding Bhutanese currency and foreign exchange. 

We will provide you with any information and practically assist you with everything related to the Bhutan trip. 

If you are traveling from India, check out all the information you need to know when visiting Bhutan. 

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