Cash - what it is

Cash corresponds to banknotes and coins.

Cash is a means of payment:

  • Universal and widely accepted, in other words, it has to be accepted as a means of payment for goods and services, unlike cheques and payment cards, which may not be accepted by merchants;

  • Of immediate liquidity – the payment of the good or service is received immediately.

The euro has been the official currency of Portugal since 2002.

 

Euro banknotes

The banknotes are the same across the euro area.

There are two series of euro banknotes currently in circulation:

  • The first series (introduced in 2002), with seven denominations: 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500 euros;

  • The Europa series (introduced gradually over several years, starting in 2013), which already has four denominations in circulation: 5, 10, 20 and 50 euros.

 

Notas de euro

 

Euro banknotes are legal tender across the euro area, in other words, they must be accepted as a means of payment at their nominal value (i.e. the value displayed on the banknote) across all countries that have adopted the single currency.

In Portugal, there are limits to the amount of euro banknotes that can be used to make a payment. Learn more on Banco de Portugal’s website.

 

Euro coins

There are eight denominations of current euro coins: 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 cents, 1 and 2 euros.

All coins have a common European side and a national side, which identifies the issuing country.

Moedas de euro

Euro coins are legal tender across the euro area, in other words, they must be accepted as a means of payment at their nominal value (i.e. the value displayed on the coin), in all countries that have adopted the single currency.

However, no one is required to receive more than 50 coins in a single payment (i.e. euro coins have limited discharging power), with the exception of the Government (via treasury offices), Banco de Portugal and credit institutions.

Collector coins are legal tender only in the territory of the Member State issuing them.