Money Matters

Currency

Moldova’s currency is the Leu (pl. lei), abbreviated MDL. Moldovan banknotes are denominated into 1, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500, and 1,000 lei notes. One leu is comprised of 100 bani. Coins are denominated into 1, 5, 10, 25, and 50 bani coins.


Currency Exchange

Foreign currencies may be exchanged at banks or at exchange offices (casa de schimb or birou de schimb valutar). Most exchange offices only exchange Euros, U.S. Dollars, British Pounds, Swiss Francs, Romanian Lei, Ukrainian Hryvnia, Russian Rubles, and Turkish Lira. The Chisinau Airport and larger hotels also offer currency exchange services. Exchange services at the Chisinau Airport exchange a wider variety of currencies than typical ones in the country.


Bancomat (ATM)

ATM machines are available throughout the country, including at the Chisinau Airport, main banks, and shopping centers. ATMs are multilingual. There are fewer ATMs in remote areas or villages. When available, ATMs are a reliable and secure means of getting cash.


Credit Cards

Major credit cards including Visa, MasterCard, Maestro, and American Express are accepted in large hotels, car rental companies, and increasingly at stores and restaurants in Chisinau. Most transactions are still cash-based, although this is changing. Credit cards are unlikely to prove useful in small towns or away from tourist areas. Furthermore, a PIN is often required to make a credit card purchases. Visitors are advised to notify their bank when traveling to Moldova to void security blocks being placed on their cards.


Budget Guide

Foreign travelers will likely find Moldova to be good value-for-money. The price of most goods and services is cheaper than in the rest of Europe, North American, or major cities like Bucharest, Moscow, or Kiev. Of course, the prices of some items are comparable. Below are estimated prices for selected goods and services. Actual prices may vary. This is for information only (16 MDL = 1 EUR).


Hotel Prices

 

Hotel in Chisinau, 5-Star, breakfast and taxes included

2,900 MDL (180 EUR)

Hotel in Chisinau, 4-Star, breakfast and taxes included

2,000 MDL (125 EUR)

Hotel in Chisinau, 3-Star, breakfast and taxes included

960 MDL (60 EUR)

Hotel in Chisinau, 2-Star, breakfast and taxes included

470 MDL (30 EUR)

Hotel outside of Chisinau, breakfast and taxes included

400 MDL (25 EUR)

Lunch & Dinner Prices

 

Business lunch in Chisinau (per person, no drinks)

100 MDL (6 EUR)

Dinner for two at an upscale restaurant, 3 courses with   wine

800 MDL (50 EUR)

Bottle of quality Moldovan wine (0.75L) at upscale restaurant

250 MDL (15 EUR)

Bottle of domestic beer (0.5L) at upscale restaurant

35 MDL (2 EUR)

Bottle of imported beer (0.5L) at upscale restaurant

45 MDL (3 EUR)

Bottle of domestic mineral water (0.33L) at upscale restaurant

25 MDL (1.50 EUR)

Supermarket Prices

 

Bottle of Moldovan divin/brandy (10-years) at supermarket

250 MDL (15 EUR)

Bottle of quality Moldovan wine (0.75L) at supermarket

100 MDL (6 EUR)

Bottle of domestic beer (0.5L) at supermarket

10 MDL (0.60 EUR)

Bottle of imported beer (0.5L) at supermarket

20 MDL (1.25 EUR)

Bottle of domestic mineral water (0.33L) at supermarket

6 MDL (0.38 EUR)

Entertainment Prices

 

Entrance to museum

10 MDL (0.60 EUR)

Entrance to national opera/ballet performance

100 MDL (6 EUR)

Entrance to national theater performance

70 MDL (4.50 EUR)

Nightclub cover charge

150 MDL (9.50 EUR)

Other Reference Prices

 

1 liter of milk

8 MDL (0.50 EUR)

1 loaf of white bread

4 MDL (0.25 EUR)

1 liter of gasoline

17 MDL (1 EUR)

McDonald’s Big Mac

25 MDL (1.50 EUR)

Travel Prices

 

Bus ticket to Bucharest

250 MDL (15 EUR)

Train ticket to Bucharest

550 MDL (34 EUR)

Bus ticket to Kiev

250 MDL (15 EUR)

Train ticket to Kiev

440 MDL (27 EUR)

Bus ticket to Moscow

700 MDL (44 EUR)

Train ticket to Moscow

980 MDL (61 EUR)

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