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The Euro is not only one of the most traded currencies in the world, it’s also one of the newest. Euro banknotes and coins became legal tender on January 1, 2002.

Although Euro banknotes and coins were introduced in 2002, the Euro first came into existence two years earlier on 1 January 1999 as a virtual currency for cashless payments and accounting purposes. Since then the Euro has become the second-largest reserve currency in the world and the second-most traded currency, surpassed only by the US Dollar.

Euros are now officially accepted in 19 countries

France The Netherlands Estonia Malta
Germany Spain Finland Portugal
Greece Austria Latvia Slovakia
Italy Belgium Lithuania Slovenia
Ireland Cyprus Luxembourg  

You may also be able to spend Euros in other countries (some major stores in London may accept Euros, for example) but it's not widespread and exchange rates may not be favourable.

Locking in your Euro exchange rate

If you’re heading to Europe and you think the Euro exchange rate is in your favour, there’s no need to wait to exchange your AUD for EUR until you travel. With a travel money card you can lock in the exchange rate when it suits you. You can also load more than one currency onto your travel money card – ideal if you’ll be stopping off on your way.

Take the Worldwide Wallet for example, it’s a prepaid card that you can preload with Australian dollars (AUD) and any of the following foreign currencies: 

  • US Dollars (USD)
  • Hong Kong Dollars (HKD)
  • Euros (EUR)
  • Japanese Yen (JPY)
  • Canadian Dollars (CAD)
  • Great British Pounds (GBP)
  • New Zealand Dollars (NZD)
  • Singapore Dollars (SGD)
  • South African Rand (ZAR)
  • Thai Baht (THB)

If you don’t end up using the Euros on your travel card while you’re away, you can either change them into one of the other available currencies or change them back into Australian dollars.

Planning to travel within Europe?

Whether you're eating croissants in Paris, sightseeing in Rome or skiing the Pyrenees, it's worth checking which currencies you'll need on your European trip.

When budgeting, some people find it helpful to lock in their AUD to Euro exchange rate. One of the easiest ways to convert your Australian Dollars (AUD) to Euros before you travel is to:

  • Use a travel money card to convert AUD to Euros when it suits you - either ahead of time if exchange rates look favourable or simply convert AUD to Euro as you need it.

Sending Euros overseas?

If you're making an International money transfer in Euros, you can send Euros from your Westpac bank account to more than 130 countries around the world, safely and securely. To get an indicative foreign exchange rate and estimate the fees, use our currency converter

If you're regularly making and receiving payments in Euros, you may want to consider a foreign currency account.

Shopping online with a European business?

If you're shopping online on overseas websites you may want to consider a travel money card. You can lock in your exchange rate on supported currencies, such as Euros, Pounds and more.