Currency in Tanzania

The official currency used in Tanzania is the Tanzania Shilling. It serves as the primary medium of exchange within the country’s economy.

US dollars (USD) are widely accepted and preferred for specific payments in Tanzania, such as settling any finalizing trip expenses and tipping guides. When planning your travel, acquire an adequate amount of USD to cover your anticipated expenditures. For more favorable exchange rates it’s recommended to bring bills in denominations of $50 to $100.

Please note that US dollars dated before 2009 are not accepted in Tanzania due to risk of counterfeit.

Payment and cash options

When it comes to payments during your Tanzanian journey, there are several options to consider. Credit cards, such as Visa and Mastercard, are accepted in select locations within towns. However, please be aware that some establishments may add a fee to credit card transactions, ranging from 3.5% to 5% of the transaction amount.

It’s important to keep in mind that while credit cards are a viable payment option and also possible in certain lodges and camps, there are instances where this method might not be available due to unreliable internet connectivity. In such cases, it’s advisable to have alternative payment arrangements in place.

Although credit cards provide convenience and are becoming increasingly accepted, there are still some places that do not accept them. Therefore, having a combination of payment methods at your disposal is advisable to ensure seamless and trouble-free transactions during your time in Tanzania.

Tanzanian can always be withdrawn from the local ATMs, and US dollars can always be exchanged for Tanzanian Shillings.


Tipping in Tanzania is not mandatory, but it’s an opportunity to acknowledge the efforts of those who contribute to making your trip unforgettable. As with any cultural practice, a respectful attitude and genuine appreciation go a long way in fostering positive interactions during your Tanzanian adventure.

For the guide, we suggest a daily tip of $10-$15 per person (Please ask for a separate tipping recommendation list for climbing situations).

If you’re on a budget safari, we also recommend giving $5-$8 per person per day to the chef.

During short walking safaris with armed rangers, it’s customary to provide a tip of $5-$10 per person per day.

Showing appreciation to the porters at lodges and camps with small tips (e.g. $1) is highly valued, and many lodges and camps have a general tipping box for your convenience.

When dining at restaurants, especially in major cities, it’s customary to leave around a 5% tip. Alternatively, if you’re satisfied with the service, rounding up the bill to an even amount is also appreciated.

Remember that while these recommendations provide a general guideline, the most important aspect of tipping is to reflect your gratitude for the excellent service you receive.