Forex Bureaus and Money Exchange
There are a number of Forex Bureaus and banks all over Kampala and within several towns and cities where you can exchange money but please be aware that they may all have different rates and you should look around for the best one.
Also note that rates will differ depending on the value of the note being exchange. For example, you
will get a better exchange rate for $100 and $50 than for $20, $10, $5, $2 and $1 that are considered to be small bills.
Also please note that the bills must be clean, undamaged and no older than 2001. This is important since older bills will be given a poor exchange rate due to counterfeit problems they have had in Uganda.
Bills older than 1990 will not be accepted at all.
Travellers cheques may also be exchanged in Kampala but note that you will not get as favourable and the exchange rate as you would changing cash. If you have large amounts of bills to exchange, you can always ask to speak to the manager of a forex or a bank so no one will see how much cash you are carrying on you.
Theft is common in Kampala so please keep track of your money.
How to Get Money
Money can also be obtained through debit of Visa cards all over the city, although you may have to try ATMs belonging to Stanbic Bank, Standered Chartered or Barclays Bank that are known to work with most cards. If you need to withdraw up to USD 700, you may need to visit the bank to make transactions from the Bank conuter.
Please check with your bank at home to determine if and how much you will be charged for using a debit card in Uganda. In addition, you should contact your bank before leaving and let them know that you may be using your card outside of the country since some cards may be frozen if they are used in unusual places.
The local currency in Uganda is the Ugandan Shilling (UGX) and you can change money on arrival. You can exchange British pounds, Euros and US dollars at a bank or foreign exchange bureau. If you are bringing US dollars, please ensure that they are not printed before 2001 and the notes should be in denominations higher than US$50 as they fetch better exchange rates
Before leaving it’s best to check with your bank as to whether your card is accepted in Uganda. It is best not to rely solely on credit cards since power shortages can happen. ATMs are available in major towns. VISA cards and MasterCards are accepted at larger retailers and all ATMs. AMEX and Diners are not usually accepted in Uganda. Be sure to tell your bank of your travel plans before leaving your home country. Using a card overseas can sometimes cause them to freeze your account if they don’t know you’re away.
In Uganda travellers cheques are difficult to cash so we would advise against using these.
Travel money cards/cash passport
Cash Passport is a prepaid travel money card available in different currencies (GBP, EUR, USD, NZD, AUD, CAD etc.). You can nominate one of the listed currencies e.g. US$ which will allow you to withdraw local currency at over 1 million VISA ATMs. This card is not linked to your bank account which means it is much safer!
For more details check out: www.cashpassport.com or ask your bank or post office if they have a similar product.