Dollars and British Pounds can be exchanged into Rwandan Francs in most banks in Kigali, and also in some of the bigger towns. It is not as easy to exchange foreign currencies in smaller villages. If exchanging US$, you will get a better exchange rate for denominations of 50$ or more. All notes should be 2006 issue or later – they will not be accepted in most places if they are pre-2006.
Credit cards are not used widely, though some of the larger hotels may accept them. The most useful credit card to hold is VISA.
The use of ATMs has increased rapidly in the past year, though not many accept foreign cards yet. ECOBank, Equity Bank ATMs accept international VISA cards, Bank of Kigali BK also accepts VISA, Mastercard and Diners Club International.
You can use an international MasterCard or VISA card to withdraw money inside the Access Bank in the UTC building in the town centre in Kigali, but not in their cash points.
The cost of living in Rwanda is high in comparison with other Sub Saharan Africa countries, due to the cost of importing and transporting goods into a landlocked country. Prices are generally higher in Kigali than in the provinces.