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    Currency in Moldova MDL - Things to know

    Foreign exchange guide to Moldova and the Moldovan leu


    What currency is used in Moldova?

    The official currency of Moldova (country code: MD) is the Moldovan leu, with symbol L and currency code MDL.

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    Things to know about the Moldovan leu

    The Moldovan leu (MDL) is the official currency of Moldova, a country located in Eastern Europe. Here are a few things to know about the Moldovan leu:

    1. The Moldovan leu is abbreviated as MDL and is divided into 100 bani.
    2. The National Bank of Moldova is responsible for issuing and regulating the Moldovan leu.
    3. The exchange rate for the Moldovan leu is determined by supply and demand in the foreign exchange market.
    4. Moldova has a largely agricultural economy, with a significant portion of the population engaged in farming and livestock production. The country is also a major producer of wine and has a growing services sector.
    5. The value of the Moldovan leu has been relatively stable in recent years, but the currency has faced challenges due to economic challenges such as high inflation and a large trade deficit. In addition, Moldova has faced political instability and conflict, which have also had an impact on the value of the Moldovan leu.

    Travel money for Moldova

    Save money and time by Ordering your Moldovan leu online from Travelex, you get better rates and can pick up the MDL cash locally or even on travel day at the airport.

    Another popular option is to use a Pre-paid Travel Card. Your Debit/Credit Card provider will charge you 2% from market mid-rate, but your bank may also charge an extra 3% as an “Overseas Transaction Charge” plus “Overseas ATM” fees for withdrawing cash.

    For card purchases if offered a choice of currencies always select to Pay in Moldovan leu otherwise you may get much worst exchange rates.


    Travel Ideas and Money Tips for Moldova

    Moldova, nestled between Romania and Ukraine, is one of Europe's least explored destinations, boasting a rich history, undulating landscapes, and a burgeoning wine industry. If you're planning a visit, understanding your travel money options is essential. Here's a guide to help you navigate Moldova's financial landscape.

    1. Currency Information:

      • Currency: Moldovan leu (plural: lei)
      • Symbol: MDL
      • ATM Withdrawal Currency: Typically dispensed in MDL, though some may offer USD or EUR options.
    2. Cash vs. Cards:

      • Cash: While card usage is growing, many establishments, especially outside of Chișinău, the capital, still prefer or exclusively accept cash.
      • Credit/Debit Cards: Visa and MasterCard are the most widely accepted, followed by Maestro. Fewer places accept American Express. Always carry some cash as a backup, especially in remote areas.
    3. ATMs:

      • ATMs are relatively common in cities and larger towns. Before venturing into rural areas, ensure you withdraw enough cash.
      • Most ATMs will offer English language options.
      • Check with your bank about foreign transaction fees.
    4. Tipping:

      • Tipping is customary for good service. In restaurants, a 10-15% tip is standard if service charge isn't included. It's best to tip in cash.
      • For taxi drivers, rounding up the fare is common.
    5. Banking Hours:

      • Typically, banks in Moldova open from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday to Friday. Some branches may have Saturday hours, usually from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM.
    6. Budgeting:

      • Moldova is one of the more affordable destinations in Europe. A daily budget of $30-50 USD should cover basic expenses, while $70-100 USD will offer more comfort.
    7. Money Safety:

      • As with many tourist destinations, beware of pickpockets in crowded places.
      • Always use ATMs in well-lit, secure areas.
      • Keep a separate note of your card’s emergency contact number in case of loss or theft.
    8. Exchange Money:

      • Currency can be exchanged at banks, hotels, and exchange bureaus. Rates might be less favorable at hotels.
      • Avoid exchanging money on the street to prevent scams or receiving counterfeit notes.
    9. Tax-Free Shopping:

      • If you purchase goods in Moldova, you might be eligible for VAT refunds upon departure. Keep all receipts and look for stores with a "Tax-Free Shopping" logo.
    10. Sim Cards & Mobile Data: For longer stays, consider buying a local prepaid SIM card to access affordable mobile data and local calls. Moldova has good mobile coverage, with several competitive providers.

    Traveling to Moldova offers an authentic Eastern European experience. While modern conveniences are available, especially in urban areas, being prepared with the right travel money tips ensures a smoother journey. As always, before traveling, notify your bank of your travel dates to avoid any card interruptions and enjoy the beauty and culture of this hidden gem. Safe travels!


    USD/MDL Market Data

    The below interactive chart displays the USD/MDL change and UP📈 DOWN📉 trends over the past 1 Year.

    1 USD =
    17.62We compare provider deals to this wholesale mid-market rate. Read more
      1 MDL = 0.056755 USD   (Inverse rate)
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    Frequently Asked Questions

    What currency should I use in Moldova?

    The domestic currency in Moldova is the Moldovan leu.

    What is the Moldovan leu currency code and symbol?

    The three letter currency code for the Moldovan leu is MDL — symbol is L.

    Which countries use the Moldovan leu?

    It is the domestic currency in    Moldova.

    Is the Moldovan leu a closed currency?

    No, the Moldovan leu is freely available and convertible. See guide: What is a closed currency?

    What are equivalent amounts of USD and MDL?

    Here are some popular conversion amounts for USD to MDL (US dollar to Moldovan leu)*.

    $ 1 L 17.62
    $ 5 L 88.10
    $ 10 L 176.20
    $ 20 L 352.40
    $ 50 L 881.00
    $ 100 L 1,762
    $ 250 L 4,405
    $ 500 L 8,810
    $ 1,000 L 17,620
    $ 2,000 L 35,240
    $ 5,000 L 88,100
    $ 10,000 L 176,200
    $ 20,000 L 352,400
    $ 50,000 L 881,000
    $ 100,000 L 1,762,000
    $ 0.0568 L 1
    $ 0.2838 L 5
    $ 0.5676 L 10
    $ 1.1351 L 20
    $ 2.8378 L 50
    $ 5.6755 L 100
    $ 14.19 L 250
    $ 28.38 L 500
    $ 56.76 L 1,000
    $ 113.51 L 2,000
    $ 283.78 L 5,000
    $ 567.55 L 10,000
    $ 1,135 L 20,000
    $ 2,838 L 50,000
    $ 5,676 L 100,000

    More amounts

    *Converted at the current USDMDL interbank exchange rate. Calculate actual payout amounts for Send Money and Travel Money exchange rates.

    Send Money to Moldova - Best Rates

    To get a good (and fair) exchange rate when sending money to Moldova you need to find and compare exchange rates for International Money Transfers (IMTs).

    The available FX rates for sending money abroad can be very different to the mid-market (wholesale) rate which you see reported online and in the News.

    You should especially compare your own bank's exchange rates to those available from Money Transfer specialists to see how much you can save - we make that calculation easy in the below table.

    Get a better deal for foreign transfers to Moldova

    When sending money to Moldova it’s important to compare your bank’s rates & fees with those we have negotiated with our partner money transfer providers. To get a better deal you should follow these 4 simple steps :

    1. Open an account with a BER reviewed FX provider (id docs may be required)
    2. You specify the local or Moldovan leu amount you want to transfer
    3. Make a local currency domestic transfer for the requested amount to the provider's bank account in your country
    4. Once your funds are received by the provider the converted MDL amount will be transfered to the recipient account you specify in Moldova.

    Use the above calculator to compare the exchange rates of FX specialist providers rates versus your bank's standard rates you can hopefully save around 5% and maybe more - end result is more Moldovan leu deposited into the recipient bank account and less margins and fees kept by the banks!


    Expat Money & Business Guide to Moldova

    Managing your money effectively while living and working abroad can be challenging, but there are several steps you can take to ensure that your finances are in order.

    By following these tips and managing your money effectively, you can reduce financial stress and enjoy your experience living or doing business in Moldova.

    Guide to Business and Expat Life in Moldova

    Moldova, a charming country located in Eastern Europe, is a blend of cultures, landscapes, and opportunities. If you're considering relocating for business or as an expat, here's a comprehensive guide to help you adapt and thrive in Moldova.

    1. Business Climate:

    • Language: While Romanian (similar to Latin-based languages) is the official language, Russian is also widely spoken, especially in business contexts. English is increasingly popular among younger professionals.

    • Business Etiquette: Punctuality is crucial. Initial meetings are formal and begin with a handshake. It’s essential to establish personal relationships in business.

    • Economic Landscape: Moldova has a predominantly agricultural economy, with wine production being a significant export. The IT sector is growing, and there are investment opportunities in textiles, manufacturing, and telecommunications.

    2. Living in Moldova:

    • Accommodation: The capital, Chișinău, offers a variety of accommodation options from modern apartments to traditional houses. While city center accommodations are more expensive, they're also more convenient.

    • Cost of Living: Moldova is among the more affordable European countries. However, as an expat, your lifestyle choices can influence costs. Local produce and goods are cheap, while imported items are pricier.

    • Healthcare: The healthcare system in Moldova is under development. While basic medical services are available, it's advisable for expats to have comprehensive health insurance and consider medical evacuation coverage.

    • Education: There are international schools in Chișinău catering to expat families, offering curricula in English and other languages.

    3. Culture & Lifestyle:

    • Local Culture: Moldovans are known for their hospitality. Traditional events and festivals, especially related to wine, are a significant part of the culture.

    • Cuisine: Moldovan cuisine is a mix of Eastern European influences. Popular dishes include "mămăligă" (cornmeal), "sarmale" (cabbage rolls), and local wines are a must-try.

    • Entertainment & Leisure: Chișinău has theaters, museums, and galleries. The countryside offers scenic beauty, monasteries, and vineyards.

    4. Transportation:

    • Public Transport: Buses and minibuses ("rutiere") are commonly used. They're affordable but might be crowded during peak times.

    • Driving: The road infrastructure varies, with main routes being in better condition than rural roads. It's essential to be cautious, especially in winter or at night.

    5. Networking:

    • Expat Groups: There are expat communities, particularly in Chișinău. Joining such groups can help newcomers settle and network.

    • Local Partnerships: Engaging with local businesses and community organizations can provide vital insights and open doors for professional opportunities.

    6. Challenges:

    • Bureaucracy: Dealing with administrative tasks can be time-consuming, so patience is crucial.

    • Language Barrier: Investing time in learning basic Romanian or Russian can facilitate smoother interactions.

    7. Safety:

    • While Moldova is generally safe, be cautious in the Transnistria region due to political tensions. Petty crimes like pickpocketing can occur in crowded areas.

    8. Work Permits & Visas:

    • Non-EU citizens will need a work permit, and the process can be intricate. It’s recommended to consult with local legal professionals or relocation specialists.


    Moldova offers a blend of traditional charm and emerging opportunities. For business professionals and expats, it's a location that requires an open mind, adaptability, and a sense of adventure. As with any relocation, thorough research and local connections are key to a successful transition.

    Managing your finances in Moldova

    Here we list some key points for expats and businesses to consider when managing financial dealings in Moldova:

    1. Understand Moldovan leu currency exchange rates: Exchange rates can have a big impact on your finances, so it is important to keep an eye on the MDL exchange rate and consider using a currency exchange service or a credit card that does not charge foreign transaction fees to get the best exchange rate.

    2. Use a local Moldovan leu bank account: A local MDL bank account can make it easier for you to manage your finances and pay bills while you are in Moldova. It may also be more convenient to use a local MDL bank account to make purchases and withdraw cash.

    3. Research local laws and regulations: It is important to understand the local laws and regulations that apply to financial transactions in Moldova. This can help you avoid legal issues and ensure that you are complying with local requirements.

    4. Consider the tax implications: It is important to understand the tax implications of living or doing business in Moldova. This can help you plan your finances and ensure that you are paying the correct amount of tax.

    5. Seek financial advice: If you are unsure of how to manage your finances in Moldova, it is a good idea to seek the advice of a financial professional who is familiar with the local financial system. This can help you make informed decisions and avoid financial pitfalls.


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