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Jamaica Traveling Checklist And Jamaican Currency Tips

Updated on December 18, 2014
Cardisa profile image

Carolee is a passionate writer with a love for learning and teaching. She is a published author, poet, blogger, and content creator.

familiarize yourself with the local currency before you travel to prevent being taken advantage of
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our five dollar coin
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our ten dollar coin
our ten dollar coin | Source
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our one hundred dollar note | Source
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our one thousand dollar note | Source
our five thousand dollar note
our five thousand dollar note

The Jamaica Dollar

One of the first things to know when planning a Jamaica Vacation is knowing about the Jamaica currency.

The accepted currency in Jamaica is our local currency the Jamaican Dollar (JMD). In some cases the tourist areas will accept the US dollar, however, you can convert just about any currency from around the world using our banks and foreign exchange (FX) traders. In case you do not travel with cash then credit cards and debits will do.

The Jamaican currency comes in different denominations. Some of the more popularly used monies are to the left. The highest denomination is the $5000 note, then comes the $1000, $500, $100 and the $50. The coins are $20, $10, $5, $1, 25c and 10c.

What Value will you get for your dollar?

This depends on where your dollar comes from. Here is a list of the value of your dollar in Jamaica. The rates may change depending on the Foreign Exchange Market.

This is per dollar

USD ...................$106.30

GBP....................$180.58

CAN....................$96.57

EUR....................$145.10

BBD...................$48.48

KYD...................$117.86

XCD...................$36.27

JPY....................$0.9861

CHF...................$115.68

TTD...................$16.00

(Source Bank of Nova Scotia Jamaica Ltd): Updated May 2014

Recommended travel guide

What can your dollar buy?

Spending your money is up to you. Accommodation and traveling all up to you. But if you plan to see the Island and experience the culture you may have to spend out of pocket. Here are some items you may want to buy while on the road. Beware of scammers who will want to overcharge you because they figure you do not know the real cost of an item. It is recommended to take a local who you trust with you when going on the road.

Prices are quoted in Jamaican dollars

Coconut jelly water .................$50 - $150 .....depending on size

Jerk/pan chicken.....................$350 - $500.....depending on location and occasion (dances and parties will cost more, lower prices for every day)

Jerk Pork................................$800 - $1200 depending on location

Steamed/fried fish..................$300 - $600 ......depending on size of fish and location (Negril, Montego Bay and Ocho Rios are more expensive)

Red Stripe beer ....................$180 retail, up to $250 in the dance, party or more upscale establishment

Guiness Stout.......................same as Red Stripe beer

Sugar Cane ..........................$50, $100, $150, $200......your choice of the quantity (peeled and sectioned)


Note: Cost is higher for almost everything in the city and tourist areas like Montego Bay, Negril, Ocho Rios, Kingston. If you are traveling around the country buy whatever you need in the country side.

Enjoy some Jamaican Music

Your Jamaica Vacation Checklist - Items to bring

1. Your passport - without it you may not get on the plane (check the consulate in your country to see if you need a visa before making arrangements

2. Plane ticket - buying your plane ticket months ahead can save you hundreds of dollars. Don't forget it or you may end up being left at the airport or having to purchase another.

3. Swimsuit/trunks - Whether you are male, female or child, you can't come to Jamaica without experiencing our white sandy beaches and clear blue waters.

4. Sun Block - If you plan to hike, surf, collect seashells or just general excursions, you will need to protect your skin from armful UVB rays. A good sunblock with SPF30 or higher will do you good.

5. Sun tan lotion with sun protection formula - Planning on tanning? A sun tanning lotion is a must. Make sure the lotion comes fully loaded with SPF 30 or higher depending on your skin's needs.

6. Cash or Card - If you don't like traveling with cash plan on using the ATM because not all places you buy stuff will accept credit or debt cards. For example the man on the corner who sells the jelly coconut will only accept cash, he has no other means of being paid.

7. Antacid - Someone kindly reminded me that the vacationer cannot resist our jerk and beer and most likely will get heartburn form overeating so the antacid is a must.

8. Mosquito repellent. This us usually sold on the Island but it's good to pack one you are sure you are not allergic to. Though we don't really have an infestation per-say, mosquitoes are more prevalent during the summer.

9. Dancing shoes and party hat. Unless you are a party pooper or very laid back person you will be drawn into the festive vibe on the island. You must attend at least one party where you get to enjoy the Jamaican music and have a good time.

10. Space in your luggage for bringing back souvenirs. Can you really visit paradise without wanting to bring back a piece of it with you?

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    • Cardisa profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolee Samuda 

      6 years ago from Jamaica

      Thank you Jojokaya. I really appreciate the visit and comment.

    • jojokaya profile image

      jojokaya 

      6 years ago from USA

      Very informative and usefull

    • Cardisa profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolee Samuda 

      6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hi Zadi888, thanks for visiting my hubspace. I am not able to tell you off hand where exactly to stay in Portland but What I can do is do a little research and get back to you.

      I am glad you love and Jamaica and want to visit again.

      Have a blessed week.

    • zadi888 profile image

      zadi888 

      6 years ago from Atlanta, GA, USA

      greetings, cardisa i love your hubs! i've been to jamaica many times but only to montego bay, negril and ochy. i would love to visit portland. where would you suggest i stay and visit while there?

    • Cardisa profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolee Samuda 

      7 years ago from Jamaica

      Thank you Rafeeqq

    • rafeeqq profile image

      rafeeqq 

      7 years ago from Mandeville, Jamaica

      This information is really helpful.

      http://www.tropicaltreasures.net

    • Cardisa profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolee Samuda 

      7 years ago from Jamaica

      I am really sorry about that. Many vendors will vend neat to the harbor or where tourists are frequenting in order to sell their wares. They are basically harmless but walking in groups is the best way to keep safe. There is not really much we can do except ask the parish council to relocate these vendors.

    • danielleantosz profile image

      danielleantosz 

      7 years ago from Florida

      Thanks for sharing! I visited Jamaica on a cruise ship and was put off by all the local vendors hounding us. We actually got back on the ship because it was so bad. Any tips for dealing with that, or was it because we were in a port city?

    • Cardisa profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolee Samuda 

      7 years ago from Jamaica

      Thank you Tamarindcandy.

    • tamarindcandy profile image

      tamarindcandy 

      7 years ago

      Awesome, thank you. I'll keep all these in mind if I ever visit Jamaica.

    • Cardisa profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolee Samuda 

      7 years ago from Jamaica

      RH, the exchange rates confuse people a lot, when traveling it's good to get a heads up on currency so you know exactly what your spending.

      Thanks again

    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 

      7 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Love it! I can't believe the exchange rates! Neat info....on to part 3!

    • Cardisa profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolee Samuda 

      7 years ago from Jamaica

      Epi, You make my head swell!

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 

      7 years ago

      ...love this 3 part series on Jamaica - but for me, you still remain the 'star attraction' ......

      lake erie time 6:38pm

    • Cardisa profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolee Samuda 

      7 years ago from Jamaica

      Thank you Pamela, I hope you found it useful.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      7 years ago from Sunny Florida

      This is a very interesting hub. Thanks for the information.

    • Cardisa profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolee Samuda 

      7 years ago from Jamaica

      Thanks Randy, those were good tips too, maybe I'll ad them to the list. Thanks

    • Cardisa profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolee Samuda 

      7 years ago from Jamaica

      Hi Ruby, I hope you get the chance to visit Jamaica someday. Bahamas is beautiful too. Thanks for stopping by.

      Cheers!

    • Randy Godwin profile image

      Randy Godwin 

      7 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Very useful info for the first time Jamaica visitor, Cardisa. I would also suggest travelers bring their own choice of antacids, allergy and sinus medicine, and any other over-the-counter pharmaceuticals they might require at home.

      While these may be found in the larger cities, they may not be available at the smaller resort areas. I know we had problems finding a few such items. Enjoyed!

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Richert 

      7 years ago from Southern Illinois

      Oh you lucky girl, you live in paradise and i'm jealous HaHa Thank's for the tips, maybe someday i will see Jamaica. I went to the Bahama Islands back in the 70's and loved it.

    • Cardisa profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolee Samuda 

      7 years ago from Jamaica

      Thanks James, and I hope you change your mind about visiting. I know Kimmy will like the pic, she's the reason I adjusted the color...lol, she asked why I was still white?....lol

      See you later.

    • SubRon7 profile image

      James W. Nelson 

      7 years ago from eastern North Dakota

      Cardisa, since, unfortunately, I, likely, can't ever come to visit, I didn't study your hub too closely (but if I ever know of someone going I will refer them to these two hubs). By the way, I like your profile pic, and I suspect Kimberly will too. I think it's amazing how we can talk about and among ourselves as if we know each other in real life.

    • Cardisa profile imageAUTHOR

      Carolee Samuda 

      7 years ago from Jamaica

      You are quite welcomed Joe. I hope you enjoy your visit as much as I love living here...

      Thanks for stopping by!

    • Joe Bricky profile image

      Joe Bricky 

      7 years ago from Northern Nevada

      Thank you. That was very interesting as I'm hoping to visit there soon.

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