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January 18, 2017

 
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Cash Availability in India Creating Major Headaches for Travelers after Withdrawal of Certain Rupee Notes From Commerce



 
 
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If you're traveling to India in the near future, you should anticipate some difficulty and inconvenience when seeking to exchange foreign currency for Indian Rupees. 
 
In November, India’s Prime Minister, Narendra Modi removed the country’s 500 and 1,000 rupee notes from circulation in an effort to deal with black market currency issues and related security issues. This resulted in long lines at ATMs throughout India for both locals and visitors to the country and other disruptions to commerce. Travelers to India continue to have difficulty exchanging foreign currency for rupee notes at customary locations. 
 
Many tour operators, forms of local transportation, and small shops only accept rupee notes.  Hotels and currency exchange venues (even at airports) have also imposed limitations on amounts of currency exchanged.  Hotels that will exchange foreign currency may only be willing to exchange small amounts of foreign currency per room booked and many will not exchange any foreign currency at all. Even popular currency exchange retailers outside of India have suspended or have limited trading in rupees. Foreign exchange bureaus are subject to small weekly limits, ATMs throughout India are subject to daily limits and many ATMs will not accept bank cards issued by foreign banks. It is also difficult to exchange larger rupee notes for smaller rupee notes. 
 
For those traveling to India in the near future, please plan accordingly and anticipate exchanging foreign currency in large cities and at multiple venues whenever and wherever possible to suit your needs and use credit cards when possible. Also, check with merchants in advance to confirm that credit cards are an acceptable form of payment. 

 
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The content of this edition of AssistAlert is for informational purposes only and is not intended to replace further investigation or personal observations. If you are planning travel, or are traveling in or proximate to the locations identified in this newsletter, you are encouraged to contact SecurAssist for additional information.


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