Currency, currency exchange and tax-free shopping in Buenos Aires.

The local currency

  • Argentina's national currency is the Argentine peso. Note that it has the same symbol ($) as the dollar (don't be confused - prices expressed using the $ symbol are in Argentine pesos unless stated otherwise. US dollars are usually referred to using the symbol: U$S.

Changing money

  • It is easy to exchange money in Buenos Aires at casas de cambio (bureaux de change/currency exchanges) and at most banks - note that you'll need to provide identification.
  • Illegal money changers operating in the street, particularly in areas such as Calle Florida, may claim to offer a slightly better rate for dollars and euros than banks and casas de cambio, but for safety it is advised to change money at regulated institutions. For the same reason, we do not advise changing large amounts of money at one time.
  • Local currency can also be withdrawn 24 hours a day from ATMs, and larger shops and restaurants usually accept payment by credit or debit card.

Other recommendations

  • Tax-free shopping: foreign tourists are eligible to reclaim tax (VAT) on purchases of domestically-manufactured goods with a value over ARS $70 when made at participating outlets. The Global Blue website has useful information on the tax reclaim process here: AFIP, the Argentine tax authority, also has information in Spanish here:

  • Paying in US dollars: some restaurants, hotels and shops may accept cash payments in US dollars with a favourable exhange rate. It is always worth asking.

  • Keep some small change handy: many shops often run low on small change - both coins and small denomination bank notes. They will be very happy with you if you can pay with the exact change.

Using leftover pesos.

If you have a large amount of peso left at the end of your visit, you can chance them to US dollars at an official casa de cambio or in a bank (it may also be possible to exchange them for euros, or Brazilian reales, but other currencies are not regularly stocked). You may be asked to provide receipt from your original sale of dollars in orderto buy back dollars. If you have less than ARS $1,000 left, it’s probably best to use it for transport to the airport or for buying souvenirs.   


The Government of the City of Buenos Aires and the City Tourism Office do not take any responsibility for the information provided on the websites listed above.