Your Complete Currency Guide: Bahamian Dollar

Last updated on October 8th, 2023 at 02:05 pm

  << Bangladeshi Taka: Your Complete Guide to Bangladesh’s Money>> An Essential Guide to the Argentinian Nuevo Peso

Whether you are going on vacation to the Bahamas or you want to send money home to friends and family there, there is a lot to learn about the currency used in this island nation.

The national currency of the Bahamas is the Bahamian dollar. The Bahamian dollar’s currency code is “BSD” and it is often expressed as “B$.” It is issued by the Central Bank of the Bahamas. Each dollar can be subdivided into 100 cents.

Coin Values

  • 1, 5, 10, 15, 25, and 50 cents
  • 1 and 2 dollars

Banknote Values

  • 1/2, 1, 3, 5, 10, 20, 50, and 100 Bahamian dollars

Bahamian Dollar

Exchange Rates

To see the current Bahamian dollar–to–U.S. dollar exchange rate, check out today’s rate with Remitly.

Five Facts About Currency in the Bahamas

Exchange rates and inflation are important to learn about, but there are other interesting points of information that currency can offer.

1. Bahamian banknotes feature interesting people.

Until 1992, Queen Elizabeth II was the only person featured on Bahamian dollars. While she is still showcased today, Bahamian currency now features a variety of important figures. Here are the subjects of the newest versions:

B$1/2: Queen Elizabeth II,  the current and longest-reigning British monarch. (While the Bahamas are an independent nation, they are part of the British Commonwealth.)

2. The coins have unique designs.

All coins have the Bahamas coat of arms on one side, but each denomination has a unique feature on the other side.

  • 1 cent: Round coin, three starfish
  • 5 cents: Round coin, pineapple
  • 10 cents: Round coin with scalloped edge, two bonefish swimming
  • 15 cents: Square coin, three hibiscus flowers
  • 25 cents: Round coin with serrated edge, native sloop (a type of sailboat)
  • 50 cents: Round coin, blue marlin
  • 1 dollar: Round coin, conch shell
  • 2 dollars: Round coin, two flamingos

3. The Bahamas now have digital dollars.

In 2020, the Bahamas became the first country to implement legal digital currency. They are calling this currency “Sand Dollars.” This form of Bahamian dollars was a direct response to Hurricane Dorian in 2019. Sand Dollars are essentially the same as BSD. They hold the same value, so the only difference is the digital format.

4. Other currencies are accepted in the Bahamas.

You can use other kinds of currency in the Bahamas in addition to BSD. Bahamians will generally accept the United States dollar for transactions. This makes things easier for American tourists, who do not need to exchange their money before visiting. The Bahamian dollar is pegged one-to-one to the U.S. dollar, so they have the same value.

Bahamian Dollar

5. The Bahamas use “CRISP” to prevent forgery.

CRISP” stands for Counterfeit Resistant Integrated Security Product. The Central Bank of the Bahamas started using CRISP in 2005 to help prevent the production of counterfeit money. With CRISP, each banknote has specific features unique to its denomination, like watermarks, latent images, and phosphorescent features.

The Timeline of the Bahamian Dollar

Before the BSD was introduced, Bahamians were using the British pound. It wasn’t until 1966 that Bahamian dollars were implemented in the country. At first, only coins were used. In 1968, the first paper banknotes were issued as Bahamian currency. While there have been few major changes to the currency since, the Central Bank continues to produce new series of banknotes, the most recent in 2016.

Sending Money to the Bahamas

You can send money to the Bahamas with Remitly. New customers may be eligible for a special offer on their first transfer.

Further Reading

If you’d like to read more about countries that also use dollars, how exchange rates work, or how to send money abroad, check out these articles: