The Bulgarian currency is called the Lev. In its plural form it is normally referred to as Leva and it is divided into 100 Stotinki. Anything to do with currency is normally handled by the Bulgarian national Bank.
Notes come in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, and 50 and coins (Stotinki) in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, and 50.
The Bulgarian national bank was founded in 1879 and it’s main objective is to maintain price and economic stability. It is the bank that handles government funds and state owned enterprises. Another major role of theirs is to oversee the activities of other banks in Bulgaria to ensure that they are using the correct banking procedures and that depositor’s interests are protected.
The lev was introduced as Bulgarian currency in 1881. At this time it had a value that was roughly equal to the French franc. From that time until now the Bulgarian Lev has undergone many changes. Originally Lev used to mean Lion but is no longer referred to in this way.
In 1999 the Lev underwent a huge changed and was revaluated at a rate that meant 1000 old Levs was now equal to 1 new level. The ISO currency code for the new lev is BGN. (The old currency code was BGL)
The Lev is tied to the Euro at a fixed rate of; 1.95583 BGN to 1 euro and all Bulgarian currency is 100% backed up by foreign exchange reserves.
Now that Bulgaria has joined the EU they will eventually be adopting the Euro and the Lev will become a thing of the past. It is expected to be replaced by the Euro by 1st Jan 2010.
Spending Money in Bulgaria
Bulgaria is still a country that deals mainly in cash. If traveling to Bulgaria you have to be aware of the fact that credit cards are still not accepted in many restaurants and hotels. They are accepted even less in the smaller shops.
Thankfully this is changing as Bulgaria gets more used to foreign visitors. The Bulgarian government is well aware that these things have to change in order for Bulgaria to be seen as a viable destination for both tourist and foreign investors.
The good news is that cash machines are prevalent through out Bulgaria and they generally take all major debit or credit cards.
To learn more about Bulgaria visit our Bulgarian property investment page where you can also and learn how you can make money by investing in Bulgarian property.**Nothing on this website should be confused with financial or legal advice. If you need this, or any other type of advice, please seek the help of a competent professional. In addition, because real estate laws change all the time and differ from state to state, and even city to city in the same state, everything in these pages should be considered general marketing advice and ideas. Please see link to full Disclaimer at the bottom of this page.