The metical (meticais plural) is a relatively stable currency linked to the USD. Linked as it may be to the USD, Mozambicans prefer payments in meticais and Mozambican law requires that all transactions have a meticais payment option. However, in areas which are heavily influenced by South African tourists and tour operators cash payments in ZAR (South African Rands) may also be accepted. Sometimes USD and Malawi kwacha are also accepted in areas extremely close to the Zimbabwean and Malawi borders.
The importation and exportation of meticais into and out of Mozambique is limited to 500 MZN by Mozambican law. It is wise to ensure that you do not arrive or leave with more than that amount.
Whereas there is no restriction on how much money in other currencies can be brought into Mozambique, you must declare all amounts exceeding USD 5,000. Declaring it as you enter the country allows you to exit Mozambique with the same amount of funds. Traveler’s cheques are not accepted and are expensive to exchange in the banks. If you are coming to Mozambique, do leave home without them. It is also against the law to destroy Mozambican currency and those who do will be prosecuted and may land in jail or face a stiff fine.
Exchanging USD, Euros and ZAR is easily done at airports and banks and cambios (exchange offices). Banking hours are generally between 08.30 and 15.30. Many banks in smaller towns and most cambios close during the lunch hour, except those in shopping centers. Exchanging money on the streets or with individuals at the border posts is illegal and often expensive. The officials seldom have change so we recommend you have change, but please note foreign currency coins are not accepted. Currency must have no markings on the notes and only USD notes printed in 2006 or later are accepted.