When will the polymer notes be available?
The ECCB will issue the EC polymer banknotes in the following phases:
When will the paper notes be removed from circulation?
Paper banknotes will be withdrawn from circulation over a period of not less than five (5) years after the issue of the $5 polymer note in 2020.
Will ATMs dispense both paper and polymer notes?
This will depend on each commercial bank’s internal operations. However, the ATMs can be recalibrated to dispense both paper and polymer banknotes.
Will payment kiosks be able to accept the notes?
Payment kiosks will be able to accept polymer banknotes.
Will commercial banks and merchants have to change their machines?
Commercial banks and merchants do not have to change their machines. They will only be required to recalibrate their machines to dispense and accept polymer banknotes.
What is the expected lifespan of polymer notes?
Polymer banknotes are expected to last approximately three (3) times longer than paper banknotes.
Will the features on the notes fade overtime?
The banknotes will not last forever; they will become unfit for circulation through wear and tear over time.
Why not use braille instead of shapes as the tactile feature?
The ECCB recognises that not all individuals in the ECCB member countries who are blind or visually impaired are able to read braille. Hence the use of common shapes that can be easily recognised by all.
Will the tactile features/bumps flatten over time?
The tactile features will not flatten in polymer.
Are the notes the same size as the paper notes?
The polymer banknotes are the same size as the paper banknotes.
Will notes cling to each other?
New notes may cling together at the edges where they have been cut. You are advised to tap or shuffle brand new banknotes before counting.
Would the polymer notes be destroyed or damaged if they are tumbled in a washing machine or dryer?
While polymer banknotes have been tested and proven to withstand various rigorous conditions, you are advised to avoid putting the notes in washing machines or dryers as this can distort the features of the notes.
Would the notes be damaged if ironed?
Polymer banknotes have been tested to withstand temperatures of up to 140o C. However, they could be damaged if left exposed to direct heat and hot temperatures for an extended period.
Will notes have to be kept flat at all times?
The notes can be folded or bent as in wallets, pockets, purses and money-clips. Avoid crumpling or giving the notes acute creases. The lines formed from these creases and crumples can become permanent and make the banknotes unfit for circulation.
Will folds in the notes affect their use in ATMs?
Folds in the polymer banknotes will not affect their use in ATMs and other cash machines. However, acute creases and crumples can cause them to be rejected.
Should I staple my polymer notes to hold them together or to attach them to a document?
No. Stapling the polymer notes can damage them and distort the features of the notes.