Vacationers from the United States and most of Europe should have no problem using their currency, traveler's check, and major credit cards when they travel to the small nations of St. Martin and Sint Maarten.
The official currency of the French St. Martin is the same as France, the euro, €. Denominations of the euro come in notes of €5, €10, €20, €50, €100, €200, and €500. Coins come in €0.01, €0.02, €0.05, €0.10, €0.20, €0.50, €1, and €2. The U.S. Dollar's rate of exchange with the Euro fluctuates, but as of August 2005, the current conversion rate is $1.24(USD) to the euro. Some places may accept U.S. dollars and even fewer may accept the Netherlands Antilles florin. Cab drivers from French St. Martin who drive you into Dutch Sint Maarten may only accept euros or dollars.
The Netherland Antilles florin or guilder is used on the Dutch side of the island and comes in note denominations of NAf5, NAf10, NAf25, NAf50, NAf100, and NAf250. Coins come in denominations of NAf0.01, NAf0.05, NAf0.10, NAf0.25, NAf0.50, NAf1, and NAf2.50. The Netherlands Antilles florin is currently tied to the U.S. Dollar at NAf1.77 to the dollar. It currently trades with the euro at a rate of NAf2.20 to the euro. U.S. Dollars are widely accepted on the Dutch side of the island, and many establishments will list their prices in U.S. dollars.
The major credit cards of Visa, Mastercard, and even American Express are accepted widely in both St. Martin and Sint Maarten. Plus and Cirrus network cards are generally usable at ATMs located throughout the island. Banks are generally open from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m (sometimes later on Fridays), but many ATMs are accessible 24 hours a day. Vacationers can find a wide array of banks and ATMs, some discharging U.S. dollars in both Marigot, Philipsburg, Princess Juliana International Airport and other locations throughout the Island.
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