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I received from my Dad 150 American Dollars about 12 years ago. I never have thought to change this money but a few days I tried change it in a currency exchange in Sydney and the guy didn't change it because the series are old.

One Hundred Dollars - Series 1988 Fifty Dollars - Series 1988 What do I have to do to change this money?

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Can you post a picture? The old bills are still legal tender in the US but are pretty rare these days. I would suggest just trying a different place. – Chris Mueller Apr 10 '14 at 4:06
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Look for a different currency exchange? US currency remains legal tender forever, and 12 years is not that old. I just looked in my wallet and found a Series 2004 $20, which I must have got from an ATM just last week. If you know anyone who's traveling to the US in the near future, you could also sell it to them. – Nate Eldredge Apr 10 '14 at 4:07
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@NateEldredge I don't think the US Currency Notes from the 1930s are legal tender anymore. If a 100,000 USD note is still legal tender. I want one of those. :P – Aditya Somani Apr 11 '14 at 7:48
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Send them to me, and I'll send back your currency of choice. I promise. – Flimzy Apr 12 '14 at 0:06
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This question appears to be off-topic because it is not about traveling. – Flimzy Apr 12 '14 at 0:07
up vote 19 down vote accepted

What you are talking about is this 100/50 USD bill:

Series 1996 $100 Bill

I have had this problem many times. If you end up with old USD bills older that series 2003-6 then it won't be accepted by most countries and money changers outside the United States. More frequently the problem I have noticed is with the bills with the front face photo to be smaller than the current bills. Bills with the enlarged pictures i.e the new ones are widely accepted.

Note: This does not apply to the smaller denomination such as 1, 5, 10 as these denominations still use the smaller pictures.

I would suggest two solutions. The first is to try a large bank within the city you are traveling to. These have sophisticated machines and UV scanners which would allow them to check your money without concern and exchange it. Unfortunately this method is not fool proof and you may get rejected in one or two places before you come forth one which will accept it.

They are still legal tender and will be valid in the United States. They are not used outside due to lack of security within these old bills. So obviously the other solution is to either spend them in the United States or deposit them in an ATM in the United States where they are easily accepted. You can then withdraw from the ATM smaller bills which will be fresh and would most likely not have this issue.

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We found similar problems in some parts of Africa. Different currency exchanges have different standards - I haven't heard of a general rejection of particular notes here in Australia so there's probably a fair chance you'll be able to swap it somewhere else. Suburban banks could be an option, as they probably don't get trained the same way as other companies. – dlanod Apr 11 '14 at 6:50
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Not exactly the bill pictured; the bills in the question are at least 50 years newer than this one. – Michael Hampton Feb 11 '15 at 4:52
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haha, yeah, you know the bill is old when it says that you can redeem it directly for gold. That hasn't been the case in a long time. – reirab Jul 2 '15 at 2:12
    
Everything $5 up (to $100) uses the new larger-picture design, since 2003-2013 depending on denomination. Only $1 and $2 are still the old design, and of thse only $1 is normally used; $2's are only useful for people wanting to make life difficult for a storekeeper, toll-taker, etc. – dave_thompson_085 Jul 3 '15 at 11:34
    
@MichaelHampton Haha. You're absolutely right, I guess for lack of a better picture I just stuck to that one to get the idea across. Feel free to change it to the Series 1996 bill if you find a picture. – Aditya Somani Jul 17 '15 at 13:22

I don't know how you're going to get people to take those. The bills were swapped out after discovering Iran or North Korea had managed to get plates so good they could forge bills so well you needed a microscope to tell the difference. Ref: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Superdollar

The Readers Digest published shortly after the finding claimed it was unambiguously Iran and give really high contamination rates including the unsubstantiated claim that half of Moscow's bills were fake; however modern citations aren't so unambiguous to the source or spread.

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I'd guess it would be hard to find a bank in the U.S. that would not accept a $100 or $50 bill from the 1980s. Even most merchants that accept those denominations would probably accept it. A U.S. bank at which you have a deposit account would almost certainly accept it (and then probably ship it off to the Fed for replacement.) Another possibility would be to take out a debt with a U.S. lender and then use it as repayment. They would be legally required to accept it. Finding somewhere in Australia might prove more difficult, though. – reirab Feb 19 at 22:32

protected by Community Jul 2 '15 at 6:18

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