Question: What money or currency is used in the Caribbean? Can I use U.S. dollars?
Answer: The Caribbean is one of the easiest places in the world to spend your money. By that, we mean that U.S. dollars are accepted almost everywhere, as are major credit cards like Visa and Master Card. Still, there are a variety of local currencies in use on Caribbean islands, and in some places it makes sense to convert at least a few of your dollars to local cash.
In countries that use the Euro and some Caribbean nations in South America and Central America (as well as Cuba), you'll have to exchange your U.S. dollars to local currency. In Mexico, you should exchange dollars for pesos if you plan to venture beyond the major tourist areas where U.S. currency is commonly accepted -- advice that also applies to other big countries, as well.
Note that even in destinations where the U.S. dollar is accepted, you may receive change in local currency.
Official Currency (Money) for Caribbean Countries:
(* indicates U.S. dollar also widely accepted)
The following nations have their own unique currencies:
- Aruba*: Aruban florin
- Bahamas*: Bahamian dollar
- Barbados*: Barbadian dollar
- Belize*: Belizean dollar
- Bermuda*: Bermuda dollar
- Cayman Islands*: Cayman Islands Dollar
- Colombia: Peso
- Costa Rica: Colon
- Cuba: Cuban Peso (note that tourists are officially required to use a special "convertible peso" that has inferior buying power)
- Dominican Republic: Dominican Peso
- Guatemala: Quetzal
- Guyana: Guyana Dollar
- Haiti: Gourde
- Honduras*: Lempira
- Jamaica*: Jamaican Dollar
- Mexico: Peso
- Nicaragua*: Cordoba
- Panama: Balboa, U.S. dollar (both are official currencies)
- Suriname: Suriname Dollar
- Venezuela: Bolivar
- Trinidad and Tobago*: Trinidad and Tobago Dollar