The airport in Colombo has money exchange facilities, and there are money changers all over the city. The money exchange rate at the airport is higher than the price offered by exchangers in the city and the process, at times, is quite a time consuming due to long queues at the airport’s currency exchange. Foreign currency can be withdrawn from ATMs but 10-13 per cent additional charges are applied.
Money exchange can also take place at banks, but the banks are generally bustling and crowded with locals. Banks are helpful when someone wants to exchange money through cheques, as many of the places for money exchange in Sri Lanka companies do not accept them. At times of urgency, people also approach the local jewellers for money exchange. However, the exchange rate there is quite high.
The licensed money changers decide their daily opening exchange rates based on quotes provided by major Licensed Commercial Banks in Sri Lanka at 9.30 AM daily. The money changers are clustered on the roads of Colombo so customers can walk from shop to shop to compare rates. The exact percentage of money exchange can’t be specified for any company as the rate changes by -0.4 to 0.6 per cent every day and may also change during the day.
Denominations of Sri Lankan Currency:
Sri Lankan notes are in denominations of 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500 and 1000 LKR. Coins are minted in 1, 2, 5 and 10 LKR.
Some of the renowned places for money exchange in Colombo include:
Prasanna Money ExchangeWhile the exchange rate per USD at the airport is generally 159 LKR, Prasanna Money Exchange offers 164.5 LKR for each dollar. They exchange notes of USD, Euros, INR etc.
Prasanna money exchange has two branches in Colombo. One is in Wellawatte and other is in Mudalige Avenue.
Address: 57 Galle Rd, Colombo 00600, Sri Lanka.
Timings: 8 AM to 6 PM.
Address: Prasanna money changers, 42-A Mudalige Mawatha Rd, Colombo, Sri Lanka.
Phone: +94 11 243 9284
Timings: 9 AM to 6 PM. Monday to Saturday.
Royal Money ExchangeRoyal money Exchange is located just beside Prasanna Money Exchange, and there’s a branch on York street.
Address: Galle road, Colombo 00600, Sri Lanka.
Contact info: +94 11 2 587107
Timings : 8 AM to 8 PM.
Address: 51/C York St, Colombo 00100, Sri Lanka
Phone: +94 11 2 331824
Timings: Monday to Friday from 9 AM to 6 PM. Saturday 9 AM to 4 PM. Closed on Sunday.
Other money exchangers on york street are International Exchange, Windsor Money Changer and Kamal Money Exchange.
Maruthi Money Exchange:They exchange notes of about 11 different currencies that include USD, Canadian Dollar, Qatari riyal etc.
Address: 285 Galle Rd, Colombo 00600, Sri Lanka
Timings: 8:30 AM to 7 PM.
Contact info: +94112362086.
Swiss Money Exchange
Another famous money exchange company with a branch in york street and Galle, Colombo.
Address: 87 Galle Road, Wellawatte, Colombo 00600, Sri Lanka
Phone: +94 11 2 555551
Timings: 9 AM to 7:30 PM. Monday to Saturday
Keyzer Exchange:This is located near the pettah market and is frequently visited by shoppers for quick money exchange. The shop is just 4 minutes on foot from the Old Town Hall Market.
Address: 147 Keyzer St., Colombo, Sri Lanka.
Mudalige Mawatha Road:Mudalige Mawatha Road also has money changer companies like Prassana money exchange, Crown Money Exchange and Golden Money Exchange. All function from Monday to Saturday from 9 AM to 6 PM.
Sea street:Sea Street is known as the gold market of Sri Lanka because of its string of jewellery shops.
Some of these jewellery shops are also forex shops located near Old Town Hall, Sea streets like Ravi Jewellers & Money Exchange and Daya Palace jewellers. They both function from Monday to Saturday from 9 AM to 6:30 PM.
Another money changer shop called Arrujina Money Changer is located on 42 Sea st, Colombo and functions from 9 AM to 6:30 PM.