The Best Place to Exchange Currency in Tonga©
The Best Place to Exchange Currency in Tonga

The Best Place to Exchange Currency in Tonga


Where to Get the Cheapest Currency Exchange in Tonga

A fiddly but compulsory aspect of planning a trip to Tonga is getting the local currency, Tongan Pa’anga. Cash is king in Tonga and you’ll need it to pay your way for most expenses. Plus, in order to avoid using your credit/debit card and, in turn, paying unnecessary fees, it’s a good idea to just pay one (or two) currency exchange fees and pay your way with cash. But where are the best places to exchange money in Tonga? Find out with this Tonga currency exchange guide.

Remember, for exchanging currency, you need a form of ID. Note that you cannot exchange coins; only notes.

For more money advice, be sure to also check out What is the Best Way to Pay in Tonga?

Is it Better to Exchange Money in Tonga?

Better exchange rates therefore cheaper currency conversions to Tongan Pa’anga can be found in Tonga compared to overseas. This is often due to overseas currency exchange bureaus and banks having to buy in Tongan Pa’anga themselves before selling it to customers. Of course, there are exceptions, but if you’re unsure whether your local overseas currency exchange bureau offers a good deal, the general rule is that you’ll likely get cheaper exchange rates in Tonga.

The Best Place to Exchange Currency in Tonga©

Currency Exchange at Banks in Tonga

An easy go-to to exchange money in Tonga is the banks, particularly from international brands. There are multiple banks offering currency exchange in Nuku’alofa (Tongatapu), Angaha (‘Eua), Pangai (Ha’apai) and Neiafu (Vava’u). Exchanging currency at Tonga’s banks tends to be a little cheaper than at currency exchange bureaus due to banks taking a smaller/no commission.

BSP Bank (Bank of the South Pacific) Currency Exchange

BSP not only offers some of the best currency exchange rates in Tonga, but the widest range of currencies. It is also one of the more transparent banks in Tonga, whose currency exchange rates are regularly published on its website.

BSP has branches in Nuku’alofa (Tongatapu), Angaha (‘Eua), Pangai (Ha’apai) and Neiafu (Vava’u). Opening hours are from 9 am to 4 pm Monday to Friday.

See the ATM section below to learn more about using BSP’s ATMs for withdrawing Tongan Pa’anga.

ANZ (Australia and New Zealand Banking Group) Currency Exchange

Another bank that offers currency exchange in Tonga is ANZ. They offer reasonable exchange rates on NZD, AUD and USD to Tongan Pa’anga.

ANZ only has branches in Nuku’alofa (Tongatapu). Opening hours are from 9 am to 4 pm Monday to Friday.

TDB (Tonga Development Bank) Currency Exchange

The local bank in Tonga, TDB offers another option for currency exchange to/from Tongan Pa’anga and accepts AUD, NZD, USD, EUR, FJD and JPY.

TDB has branches in Nuku’alofa, Tatakamototonga, Nukunuku (Tongatapu), Angaha (‘Eua), Pangai (Ha’apai) and Neiafu (Vava’u). Opening hours are from 9 am to 4 pm Monday to Friday.

MBf Bank Currency Exchange

A smaller local bank in Tonga, MBf offers limited currency exchange dealing in Tongan Pa’anga, as well as AUD, NZD and FJD.

MBf has branches in Nuku’alofa (Tongatapu) and Neiafu (Vava’u). Opening hours are from 9 am to 4 pm Monday to Friday.

The Best Place to Exchange Currency in Tonga©

Currency Exchange Bureaus in Tonga

Currency exchange bureaus in Tonga are just as abundant as banks and tend to appear in the same towns – Nuku’alofa (Tongatapu), Angaha (‘Eua), Pangai (Ha’apai) and Neiafu (Vava’u) – with additional branches in the most populated villages on Tongatapu.

No 1 Currency (FEXCO) is an international brand and the one that has the largest presence in Tonga. However, you can see licensed foreign exchange bureaus listed on the National Reserve Bank of Tonga‘s website.

No 1 Currency (FEXCO)

No 1 Currency is the leading provider of foreign currency and travel money exchange in the South Pacific, boasting several branches across Tonga. While offering convenient locations for exchanging currency, No 1 Currency usually takes a significant commission compared to banks.

No 1 Currency has branches in the following locations:

  • Fexco Federal Pacific House, Taufa’ahau Road, Nuku’alofa, Tongatapu
  • Fexco Tatakamotonga, Fetu Hall, Tatakamotonga, Tongatapu
  • Fexco Talamahu Market, Salote Road, Nuku’alofa, Tongatapu
  • Western Union, Jones Industries Building, Taufa’ahau Road, Poutaha, Tofoa, Tongatapu
  • Western Union, Amelia Pale Store, Taufa’ahau Rd, Vaini, Tongatapu
  • Western Union, Fatu Hall, Taufa’ahau Road, Tatakamotonga, Tongatapu
  • Western Union, Tu’ivakano Polutele Hall, Hihifo Road, Nukunuku, Tongatapu
  • Fua’amotu International Airport, Fua’amotu, Tongatapu
  • Western Union Vava’u, BSP Building, Tu’i Road, Neiafu, Vava’u
  • Western Union Ha’apai, Visitor Information Centre Building, Halapeka Road, Pangai, Ha’apai
  • Western Union ‘Eua, Malau Hall, Angaha, ‘Eua.

Opening hours are from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm Monday to Friday and limited hours on Saturday.

The Best Place to Exchange Currency in Tonga©

Withdrawing Tongan Pa’anga from ATMs

ATMs are another worthy way to get Tongan Pa’anga in Tonga with an overseas debit or credit card. You cannot, however, exchange foreign currency at an ATM; only make a withdrawal.

What International Cards Do Tonga ATMs Accept?

Tonga’s ATMs accept overseas debit and credit cards issued by Visa, as long as there is a four-digit PIN encoded. BSP ATMs, which are the most common ATMs found in Tonga, typically accept Visa, MasterCard, Cirrus, JCB, Union, Plus Card, American Express and BSP PacifiCard.

There is likely to be a withdrawal fee for withdrawing currency from an ATM from an overseas bank account, usually around a TOP$8-$15 flat fee. Note that your bank is likely to charge a conversion surcharge of around 3-5%.

See Can You Use Your Credit or Debit Card in Tonga? for more details.

Where are the ATMs in Tonga?

There are less than 20 ATMs in Tonga, mostly found in Nuku’alofa, Fua’amotu International Airport, Neiafu and Pangai (Ha’apai). See ATM locations in our guides: Information, Shops & Services in TongatapuInformation, Shops & Services in Ha’apai and Information, Shops & Services in Vava’u.

More About Money in Tonga

That’s it for our guide on the best places to exchange currency in Tonga. For more about paying your way through your holiday, check out the following guides:

For more essential tips for your Tonga getaway, check out the Tonga Travel Tips: 30 Tips for Travelling in Tonga.


Robin (Lopini) C.

This article was reviewed and published by Robin, the co-founder of Tonga Pocket Guide. He has lived, worked and travelled across 16 different countries before settling in the South Pacific, so he knows a thing or two about planning the perfect trip in this corner of the world. Robin works and consults regularly with the Ministry of Tourism of Tonga. Robin is also the co-founder of several other South Pacific travel guides and is a regular host of webinars with the South Pacific Tourism Organisation.

Was this article useful?