Money in Chinese

Money in Chinese

If you plan to travel to China or Taiwan or would like to know what currencies they are using and what their paper bills and coins look like, you have come to the right place. In this article, we are going to talk about money vocabulary in Mandarin Chinese, what Renminbi and the New Taiwan Dollar look like, what crucial sentences you may use when buying stuff in China, and what other currencies are used around the world and their names in Chinese.

money in Chinese

钱 / 錢 qián Money

We translate money in Chinese as “钱 / 錢 qián.” Do you know how to say “rich, wealthy” in Chinese?

A very simple phrase, “有钱 yǒu qián.” “有 yǒu” means “to have.” So, it makes sense that “have money” means “rich.” Here is how to use it:

  • 他很有钱。 Tā hěn yǒu qián.

          He is rich! (He has got money!)

  • 我没有钱。 Wǒ méiyǒu qián.

          I do not have money. 

how much in Chinese

多少 / 多少 duōshǎo How much, how many

To ask how much something costs in Chinese, this is how to ask:

多少钱? Duōshǎo qián?

How much (money)?

(多少 duōshǎo can be either how much or how many. For instance, 你想吃 多少个 水饺?Nǐ xiǎng chī duōshǎo gè shuǐjiǎo? How many dumplings would you like to have?)

yuan RMB

人民币 / 人民幣 rénmínbì RMB

人民币 rénmínbì RMB is the currency that is used in mainland China. The exchange rate to the USD is approximately 1 USD equals around 7 RMB as this is written (2020). The currency sign for RMB is ¥.

NTD

新台币 / 新台幣 xīn táibì New Taiwan Dollar (NTD)

新台幣 xīn táibì the New Taiwan Dollar is the currency used in Taiwan, as well as a few islands around Taiwan, which are Kinmen, the Matsu Islands, and the Penghu Islands. The exchange rate to the USD is approximately 1 USD equals around 30 NTD as this is written (2020). The currency sign for NTD is NT$.

元 / 元 yuán Dollar (Formal name)

块 / 塊 kuài Dollar (Colloquial name)

Both “元 yuán” and “块 kuài” mean “dollar” in Chinese. “块 kuài” is often used with “钱 qián.” Let’s see two examples below:

这件衣服五十块(钱)。

Zhè jiàn yīfú wǔshí kuài (qián).

This piece of clothing is ¥50.

(“块 kuài” and 块钱 “kuài qián” are the same. “钱 qián” is often omitted in this case.)

这两杯奶茶一共三十元。

Zhè liǎng bēi nǎichá yīgòng sānshí yuán.

These two cups of milk tea are ¥30 altogether.

Note: We can use both “元 yuán” and “块 kuài” for RMB and NTD. 

 

毛 / 毛 máo 0.1 yuán (Colloquial name)

角 / 角  jiǎo 0.1 yuán (Formal name)

Both “毛 máo‘ and “角  jiǎo” means 0.1 yuán. “毛 máo” is more common in conversation. 10 毛 máo will make one yuan. We often omit it if this is the last digit of the amount. Let’s see an example below:

这杯咖啡九块五。

Zhè bēi kāfēi jiǔ kuài wǔ.

This cup of coffee is ¥9.5.

(You can say “九块五 毛 jiǔ kuài wǔ jiǔ kuài wǔ.” But it is common to omit it since it is the last digit of the amount. But if the item costs ¥9.99, then we say 九块九毛九 Jiǔ kuài jiǔ máo jiǔ. We say 毛 máo in this case because it is not the last digit. Another note to keep in mind is we will NOT say 九 元 五 jiǔ yuán wǔ. Only 九块五 jiǔ kuài wǔ. We only use 元 yuán for a whole number amount.)

毛 máo is still used in mainland China. But you cannot see it in Taiwan anymore. The reason is that the RMB has a higher value. If 1 USD is 7 RMB, it means 1 RMB is about 14 to 15 cents. The value of 1 máo will be about 1.5 cents. It makes sense that RMB 毛 máo is still circulating. The New Taiwan Dollar, on the other hand, has less value. 1 NTD is worth only about 0.03 USD, which means 1 máo of NTD is only worth 0.0003 USD. There is no need to use it.

分 / 分 fēn 0.01 yuán (Formal name)

It is getting rare to see “分 fēn” in China. And of course, you can’t find it in Taiwan.

paper bill in Chinese

钞票 / 鈔票 chāopiào Paper money

Paper money in Chinese is 钞票 chāopiào. The measurement word for it is “张 zhāng,” which is for flat objects. 

coins in Chinese

硬币 / 硬幣 yìngbì Coins

硬 yìn means something is hard, firm.

币 bì means money, coin.

Hard and firm money will be coins.

给 / 給 gěi To give

When giving money to someone, this is the verb you will use

找 / 找 zhǎo To give (change)

The phrase for giving change is 找(钱) zhǎo (qián). But take a look the examples below to see how to use it properly:  

(You would like to pay your friend who got something for you. The amount is ¥16.)

Scenario 1:

A: 你会给我十六块,还是要找钱?

Nǐ huì gěi wǒ shíliù kuài, háishì yào zhǎoqián?

Will you give me ¥16 exactly or do I need to give you change?

(Means you may have a ¥20 or larger bill.)

 

You: 不用找钱,我给你十六块。谢谢!

Bùyòng zhǎoqián, wǒ gěi nǐ shíliù kuài. Xièxiè!

There is no need to give change, I will give you ¥16 exactly. Thank you.

Scenario 2:

A: 你会给我十六块,还是要找钱?

Nǐ huì gěi wǒ shíliù kuài, háishì yào zhǎoqián?

Will you give me ¥16 exactly or do I need to give you change?

You: 对不起啊,我没有零钱,我给你二十块。

Duìbùqǐ a, wǒ méiyǒu língqián, wǒ gěi nǐ èrshí kuài.

Sorry, I don’t have change. I will give you ¥20.

A: 没关系,我 找 你 四块钱。

Méiguānxì, wǒ zhǎo nǐ sì kuài qián.

It’s ok. I will give you four dollars change.

(As you can see “找 你 四块钱 zhǎo nǐ sì kuài qián,” the pattern is “找 + person + amount.”)

错 / 錯 cuò Wrong, incorrect

If someone gives you the wrong change, you can say:

你找错了。你多找了我一块钱。

Nǐ zhǎo cuòle. Nǐ duō zhǎole wǒ yīkuài qián.

You gave the wrong change. You gave me one extra dollar.

discount

杀价 / 殺價 shājià To bargain

“杀价 shājià” literally means “to kill the price!” Is this interesting? You think the price is too high, and you “kill” the original price for a lower one. 

贵 / 貴 guì Expensive

When purchasing something, if you think it is too expensive and you would like to negotiate the price, you can say:

太贵了!便宜一点吧!

Tài guì le! Piányí yīdiǎn ba!

 It is too expensive! Can you lower the price?

便宜 / 便宜 piányí Inexpensive, cheap

这些口罩很便宜,可以多买一些。

Zhèxiē kǒuzhào hěn piányí, kěyǐ duō mǎi yīxiē.

Those face masks are pretty cheap. You can buy some more.

Numbers in Chinese with Money Units

When talking about money, there is no doubt that numbers will come along. The rules are pretty simple. Let’s see two examples below:

How to say  ¥ 243.98

人民币 两百四十三块 九毛八

Rénmínbì liǎng bǎi sìshísān kuài jiǔ máo bā

(Of course, you do not need to say Renminbi if it is obvious. We will only be that specific if there is more than one currency that may apply in that situation. If you need to say it, place it before the amount.)

How to say ND$1520

新台幣 一千五百二十 元 Xīn táibì yīqiān wǔbǎi èrshí yuán




 

 

If you would like to learn more about Chinese numbers, don’t miss this post!

Renminbi Paper Bills and Coins

Let’s take a look at what the Renminbi looks like in paper bills and coins.

This is ¥100 front and back. (paper)

¥100 money in Chinese

This is ¥50 front and back. (paper)

¥50 money in Chinese

This is ¥20 front and back. (paper)

¥20 money in Chinese

This is ¥10 front and back. (paper)

RMB ¥10 money in Chinese

This is ¥5 front and back. (paper)

RMB ¥5 money in Chinese

This is ¥1 front and back. (paper)

RMB ¥1

This is ¥1 front and back. (coin)

RMB ¥1

This is ¥0.5 front and back. (coin)

RMB ¥0.5

This is ¥0.1 front and back. (coin)

RMB ¥0.1

Renminbi Paper Bills and Coins Infographic

RMB money in Chinese

New Taiwan Dollar Paper Bills and Coins

Let’s take a look at what the New Taiwan Dollar looks like in paper bills and coins.

This is ND$ 1000 front and back. (paper)

NTD 1000 money in Chinese

This is ND$ 500 front and back. (paper)

NTD 500 money in Chinese

This is ND$ 100 front and back. (paper)

NTD 100

This is ND$ 50 front and back. (coin)

NTD 50 money in Chinese

This is ND$ 10 front and back. (coin)

NTD 10 money in Chinese

This is ND$ 5 front and back. (coin)

NTD 5 money in Chinese

This is ND$ 1 front and back. (coin)

NTD 1 money in Chinese

New Taiwan Dollar Paper Bills and Coins Infographic

NTD money in Chinese

Buying Things in Chinese

bubble tea
sugar

Bargaining is not common in the United States. In China and Taiwan, people still bargain when they purchase, not that much in a store or mall, but at a street stand or in a market place.

Ordering bubble tea conversation…

我要一杯大杯的珍珠绿茶。 

Wǒ yào yībēi dà bēi de zhēnzhū lǜchá.

I want a large cup of green tea with boba. 

 

热的冰的?

Rè de bīng de?

Hot or cold?

 

冰的。

Bīng de.

Cold.

 

冰块呢? 

Bīng kuài ne?

Ice level?

 

去冰。

Qù bīng.

No ice.

 

甜度呢?

Tián dù ne?

Sugar level?

 

少糖 

Shǎo táng

Less sugar.

 

好,这样是七块五。

Hǎo, zhèyàng shì qī kuài wǔ.

It is ¥7.5.

(When ordering drinks in China and Taiwan, it is very common for you to want to adjust the sugar and ice levels. It may sound interesting for some people that there is even a hot or cold option. This is a cultural thing. When drinking tea in China, originally we only used to drink hot tea with no sugar. When bubble tea became popular, more younger people preferred cold drinks with some sugar, but they still kept the original flavors. For sugar and ice levels, different drink shops have their own standards. Usually they have 3 to 5 different levels for each. For example, the sugar level can be no sugar, half sugar, and full sugar. In some stores, they may have 3 out of 10 and 8 out of 10 in between to be more specific. The same applies to the ice level.)

two for 10
three for 10

Buying some accessories from a street vendor…

这一个多少钱?

Zhè yīgè duōshǎo qián?

How much is this?

一个七块,两个十块。

Yīgè qī kuài, liǎng gè shí kuài.

One for ¥7, two for ¥10.

太贵了!算便宜一点吧!三个十块,行吗? 

Tài guìle! Suàn piányí yīdiǎn ba! Sān gè shí kuài, xíng ma?

That’s too expensive! Give me a discount! How about three for ¥10?

好吧!行,算你三个十元。

Hǎo ba! Xíng, suàn nǐ sān gè shí yuán.

OK, fine. Three for ¥10 for you…

(Well, bargaining is usually not that easy in a real situation. It will usually go back and forth a few times until both sides reach an agreement. It also depends on where you shop. It is rare to bargain in malls, bigger stores, and grocery stores. But it is still very common to do so in small shops and at street stands.)

World Map with 18 Currencies in Chinese

Here is a list of 18 currencies in Chinese and where they are used around the world.

  • 加元  jiā yuán CAD ($)
  • 美元  Měiyuán USD ($)

  • 墨西哥比索  mòxīgē bǐsuǒ MXN ($)

  • 巴西雷亚尔  bāxī léi yà ěr BRL (R$)

  • 英镑  yīngbàng GBP (£)

  • 瑞士法郎  ruìshì fàláng CHF (Fr)

  • 欧元  ōuyuán EUR (€)

  • 西非法郎  xīfēi fà láng XOF (CFA)

  • 中非法郎  zhōng fēi fàláng XAF (FCFA)

  • 南非兰特  nánfēi lántè ZAR (R)

  • 人民币  rénmínbì RMB (¥)

  • 韩元  hányuán KRW ()

  • 日元  rì yuán JPY (¥)

  • 新台币  xīn táibì NTD (NT$)

  • 印度卢比  yìndù lúbǐ INR (₹)

  • 港元  gǎngyuán HKD ($)

  • 澳元  àoyuán AUD ($)

  • 新西兰元  xīnxīlán yuán NZD ($)

World Map with 18 Currencies in Chinese​ Simplified Chinese Version

Here is a list of 15 currencies in Chinese and where they are used around the world

World Map with 18 Currencies in Chinese​ Traditional Chinese Version

World Map with 18 Currencies in Chinese​ Simplified Chinese Version

Is the currency you are using in the list above? If not, share with us what the currency is in Chinese!

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