On January 01, 2008, the Republic of Cyprus introduced the Euro (€) as its official currency, replacing the Cyprus pound (CY£) as the legal tender of Cyprus, at the irrevocable fixed exchange rate of €1 = CY£ 0,585274.
There are seven denominations in Euro banknotes: 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500. They are all distinguished by a different colour and size, with the higher the denomination, the bigger the size.
One Euro is divided into 100 cent. There are eight Euro coins: 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 cent, and 1 and 2 Euro. The designs on one side of the coins are common to all the countries of the Eurozone (those with the Euro as their currency), while the other side reflects the national identity of the issuing country. All Euro coins can be used in all Eurozone countries, irrespective of their national side.
All banks operating in Cyprus offer foreign currency exchange services and quote the exchange rates of the Euro against all major foreign currencies daily. Foreign currency can also be exchanged at hotels. More detailed information concerning exchange rates can be obtained from the Central Bank of Cyprus.
Import / Export - Banknotes, Currency and / or Gold
There are no restrictions on the import and export of cash or gold for travellers from and to another EU Member State.
However, according to the ‘Control of Cash Entering or Leaving the Community and the Exercise of Intercommunal Controls on Cash Law’ of 2009, travellers arriving from, and departing to, another EU Member State or a third country and carrying a sum of Euros 10,000 or more - in any currency, in cash (banknotes and bearer negotiable instruments) or gold - must be declared at Customs.
For further information please contact:
Customs & Excise Department
M. Karaoli & Gr. Afxentiou, 1096 Lefkosia
Tel: +357 22 601 713, Fax: +357 22 302 031
Forms of Payment
Hotels, large shops and restaurants accept credit cards, travellers' cheques, eurocheques and banknotes of major foreign currencies.
Major credit cards are widely accepted throughout Cyprus, especially in major towns and tourist areas that are used for serving tourists. Visa and MasterCard are the most-accepted types of cards, with American Express, Diners Club, Maestro, Carte Blanche accepted less frequently.
Visitors in possession of any of the above mentioned international credit cards may contact the appropriate bank for the withdrawal of cash.
Please note that using a credit card overseas often incurs a fee. Some cards marketed to travellers have no fees for overseas purchases, and others reduce the fee from the average 3% charge that most credit cards charge.
Please note that some establishments still accept only cash; it cannot be taken for granted that a credit card will work while travelling in Cyprus.
For lost credit cards, contact JCC Payment Systems Ltd., and at the same time, contact your bank either in Cyprus or in the issuing country.
JCC Payment Systems Ltd.
Stadiou 1, 2571 Industrial Area Nisou
CY 2571 Lefkosia
Tel: +357 22 868 000 (24-hour service), Fax: +357 22 868 111
Tipping is at the discretion of the customer and is a gesture that is appreciated by hotel and catering establishment employees. Taxi-drivers, porters, hairdressers etc., always appreciate a small tip.
V.A.T. (Value Added Tax)
V.A.T is charged on every supply of goods or services at the standard rate of 19%.
The V.A.T reduced rate of 9% is imposed on:
- The transport of passengers and their accompanying luggage within Cyprus, with urban, suburban and rural taxis as well as with tour and suburban buses.
- The services of restaurants and the supply of food in the course of catering (except the supply of alcoholic beverages wine and beer, which is chargeable at 19%).
- The provision of accommodation in the hotel sector or in sectors with a similar character.
The reduced rate of 5% is imposed on:
- The transport of passengers and their accompanying luggage with urban and rural buses.
- The letting of camping sites and caravan parks.
- The supply of newspapers, books, periodicals, services of writers and artists.
- Certain products for persons with special needs.
- Hair salon services.
- Confectionary products.
- Entry fees to theatres, cinemas at sports events, Luna parks and similar cultural events.
Certain supplies of goods or services are zero-rated:
- The supply, hiring and repair of sea-going vessels and aircrafts.
- The supply of services to meet the direct needs of sea-going vessels.
- Leasing or letting of immovable property.
- Financial services and lotteries.
- Medical care, social welfare and education.
- Sports and cultural services.
- Insurance transactions, and the like.
Retail prices displayed for goods charged with V.A.T. should be V.A.T. inclusive.
V.A.T. Claim (Tax-free Shopping for Visitors)
According to the V.A.T. legislation in force, foreign visitors to Cyprus (visitors from countries outside the EU) can claim back the V.A.T. on goods exported to a place outside the EU in their hand luggage.
Visitors are eligible for a V.A.T. refund under the following conditions:
- If they are not holders of an EU country passport or other form of identification.
- If they have not resided in Cyprus or any other member state of the European Union for more than 365 days in the last two years before the date they purchased the goods.
- The total purchase must exceed €504.
- The goods must be exported in luggage by the last day of the third month following the month in which the goods were purchased.
There are three easy steps to claim your V.A.T. refund:
- Shop wherever there is a tax-free shopping sign and simply ask for your tax-free document.
- When leaving Cyprus show your purchases and passport to customs officials and have your tax-free document stamped.
- Receive your refund in the method of your choice.
For further information, contact any of the below:
CY 1471 Lefkosia
Tel: +357 22 601 809, Fax: +357 22 660 484
Cyprus Consumers’ Association
Acropoleos, 8A, Office 302, 2007 Strovolos, Lefkosia
Tel: +357 22 516 112 / +357 22 516 113 / +357 70 000 700, Fax: +357 22 516 118
Global Blue Cyprus Ltd
P.O. Box 42801, 6503 Larnaka
Tel: +357 24 817 555, Fax: +357 24 817 558
Tax Free Worldwide Cyprus Ltd
44 Inomenon Ethnon Avenue, Orthodoxou Tower 7th Floor, 6042 Larnaka
Tel: +357 24 828 484 / +357 25 323 791
Freefone: +357 80 000 828 / +357 24 008 715
Cost of Living / Holiday Budget
The price of products and services in Cyprus varies depending on the season and the location. Below is an indicative list of average prices in Euro:
Entertainment and Leisure (average prices, July 2015)
- Single bus ticket: €1,50
- Cinema ticket: €8 (adults) / €6 (children)
- Theatre ticket: €17 - €25
- Concert/opera ticket: €25 - €77
- Continental breakfast: €3,40 - €6
- Lunch (fixed menu): €10 - €13,50
- Dinner at a local tavern (meze, including beer or cold drink): €20
- Cappuccino (regular): €3,50
- Glass of beer: €3,50 - €5
- Soft drink: €1,30
- Pack of cigarettes: €4,50
Supermarket (average prices)
- Milk: €1,41 per litre
- Bread (village bread): €1,71 per loaf
- Cyprus Cheese (Halloumi): €13,51 - 15,50 per kilo
- Local beer: €0,68 - 0,79 per 330 ml tin
- Local natural water: €0,48 - 1,50 per 1.5 litre
- Pork: €4,50 - 5,90 per kilo
- Chicken: €4,00 - 4,40 per kilo
- Tomatoes: €0,85 - 1,30 per kilo
- Apples (various varieties): €1,89 - 3,75 per kilo