Traveling to Honduras? Here's What You Need to Know About Honduran Lempira!

11 May 2023 - Category: Blog /
lempira honduras

Are you excited about your upcoming trip to Honduras? As you prepare for your adventure, it's essential to familiarize yourself with the local currency, the Honduran Lempira. Understanding how to handle money in a foreign country can make your travel experience smoother and more enjoyable. In this article, we will delve into the details of the Honduran currency, explore its history, security features, and exchange rates, and answer some frequently asked questions. So, let's embark on this informative journey!

What is the history of Honduran Lempira?

The Honduran Lempira (HNL) has been the official currency of Honduras since 1931. Named after the indigenous leader Lempira, who fought against Spanish conquistadors, the currency plays a crucial role in the country's economic activities. It is subdivided into 100 centavos, with coins available in denominations of 10, 20, and 50 centavos, and banknotes in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, and 500 lempiras.

The introduction of the Honduran Lempira as the official currency replaced the Honduran peso at a rate of 1 Lempira to 2.50 pesos. The currency's name honors Lempira, a national hero who led indigenous resistance against Spanish colonization in the 1530s. His courage and determination in defending his people's land and culture make him a significant symbol in Honduras.

Honduran Lempira Exchange Rates

The exchange rate of the Honduran Lempira fluctuates against major foreign currencies, primarily the US dollar (USD). It is convenient to note that exchange rates may vary depending on the location and method of currency exchange. It is advisable to check the rates before traveling or conducting financial transactions in Honduras.

When visiting Honduras, it is essential to have a basic understanding of how to use the local currency. While some establishments may accept US dollars, particularly in tourist areas, it is recommended to use the Honduran Lempira for most transactions to avoid any confusion or potential exchange rate discrepancies.

In Honduras, cash is still widely used for daily transactions, especially in smaller establishments or local markets. It is advisable to carry small denominations of banknotes and some coins for convenience. Credit and debit cards are generally accepted in larger hotels, restaurants, and shopping malls. It is recommended to keep an eye on your card during transactions to prevent any unauthorized activities.

Can you use American dollars in Honduras?

While the official currency is the Honduran Lempira, US dollars are sometimes accepted in tourist areas, hotels, and larger establishments. However, it's advisable to use the local currency for most transactions to ensure fair pricing and avoid any confusion due to fluctuating exchange rates. Additionally, when paying in US dollars, expect change to be given in Lempiras.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Where can I exchange currency in Honduras?

Currency exchange services can be found at major airports, banks, and authorized exchange offices throughout Honduras. Additionally, ATMs allow you to withdraw Honduran Lempira using your international debit or credit card. It is recommended to compare exchange rates and fees to find the most favorable option.

Can I use my credit or debit card in Honduras?

Credit and debit cards are widely accepted in larger establishments, such as hotels, restaurants, and shopping malls. It's always a good idea to inform your bank about your travel plans beforehand to avoid any issues with card usage. However, in smaller towns or local markets, it's best to carry cash as card acceptance may be limited.

What is the best way to handle currency when traveling around Honduras?

When traveling around Honduras, it's advisable to carry a combination of cash and cards. While credit and debit cards are convenient for larger expenses and offer added security, having cash is essential for smaller transactions and places where cards may not be accepted. Be sure to carry small denominations of Honduran Lempira for convenience, as breaking large bills can sometimes be a challenge.


You are now equipped with all the essential information about the Honduran Lempira to ensure a smooth and enjoyable trip to Honduras. Remember these key points:

  • The Honduran Lempira is the official currency, and it's valuable to know its current exchange rate before your trip.
  • Exchange currency at banks, authorized exchange offices, or airports to get the best rates.
  • While US dollars may be accepted in some places, it's recommended to use the local currency to avoid confusion.
  • Credit and debit cards are widely accepted, but it's always a good idea to carry some cash for smaller transactions and areas with limited card acceptance.
  • ATMs are available in urban areas, making it convenient to withdraw cash when needed.

By familiarizing yourself with the Honduran Lempira and its usage, you can navigate the local economy with confidence, interact with locals more smoothly, and make the most of your time in this captivating country.

So, pack your bags, embrace the vibrant culture, explore breathtaking landscapes, and savor the delicious cuisine of Honduras. Enjoy your trip, and may your experiences be unforgettable!

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