Monday, 27 August 2012

Weirdest Currencies Ever

1. Rai Stone
Definitely the Solomon Island Yap has the weirdest currency in the whole world… and the largest, too. The islanders use the rai stones, large stone disks with a hole in the middle. Allegedly part of the value is the size, but the most important is how many people have died to bring the stone there. The people from Yap have no enough rai stones there, so they have to travel with canoes to the island of Palau, another little dot in the pacific and bring the stone to Yap. However, the system is not capitalistic, so the country stays immune to inflation.

2. Holy Water Dollar
People of Palau never made problems to their neighbors when they were coming for the stones because they have their dollar. However, one of the world’s smallest countries in 2007 made their currency a little bit unconventional. They issued a silver dollar with the image of the Virgin Mary and a tiny vial containing holy water from the Grotto at Lourdes, France. The next year there was a second series to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Apparitions of the Virgin Mary at the Grotto.

3. Squirrel Pelts
Medieval Russians traded with, believe it or not, parts of squirrel’s body. The pelts were mostly used and had the greatest value, but ears, claws and snouts were also used, probably as change. It’s believed that this currency saved them from the Black Plague, while people from whole Europe have been dying, as the pelts wore fewer parasites than the banknotes and coins.

4. Space Quid
This currency was never used on Earth, but when humanity develop good enough technology to trade into the space, then the Space Quids will be the official currency. It was designed by scientists from the National Space Centre and the University of Leicester, having in mind that electronic money transfers would be impossible in space.

5. Recycled Coins
This is not money made of recycled paper, but of recycled metal. Caribbean island countries had no currencies of their own in the middle of 19th century, so the foreign money they had got were melted and were made new coins – recycled coins. The island of Dominica had the most unique coin, with heart-shaped cutout in the middle.

6. Chilean Peso
The Chilean Peso today is not weird currency at all, back in 2008 it was if not the weirdest, for sure the funniest currency in whole world. People who made the coins made one very big mistake – they misspelled the name of the country. Instead of Republica de Chile, they wrote Republica de Chiie. “Only” 50 million such coins were made.

7. Disney Dollars
It’s one of the world’s strongest currencies, as its value is leveled to the American dollar. However, the denomination of one, five and ten dollars can be used only in Disney’s theme parks, resorts, and cruise ships and at Disney’s private island, Castaway Cay. The currency was made in May 1987.

8. Lewes Pound
Lewes mayor Michael Chartier intended to promote the small traditional local shops in the town and invented unique way to do that. He launched a local currency named Lewes pound. With that money people could pay their bills all around the town. Brixton in South London followed this example and launched the Brixton pound only one year later.

9. Moose Jaw Centennial
Moose Jaws Centinnials are the only money in the world made of wood. That was the way that Germans used after the World War I, when they had to pay big amounts of money for reparation. Actually, the disciplined Germans used to print money on anything they could, just to give time to the Reichsbank to recover.

10. Green Stamp Money
The Green Stamp money has a certain purpose. This is not money with which Vietnamese people could buy anything they want, but only certain things. On the edges of the banknote there are coupons which the owner has to tear off and exchange it for something. For example, there was money for clothes, and each coupon of the banknote was to be used for certain clothe, some for pants, some for coat, some for socks.