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The world’s weirdest coins and currencies

A Zimbabwean 100 trillion dollar note

The world is moving towards a more cashless society, but money and currencies have existed for centuries.

Coins and notes will be in circulation for many years to come and will be collected by specialists.

Over the course of time, there have been many weird and wonderful things used as currencies.


in 2024, there are currencies that only exist digitally, and some cultures who still use stones as a legitimate form of payment.

Here are some of the more unusual forms of currency seen around the world.

Zimbabwe's 100 trillion dollar note

One hundred trillion dollars, just think how much that is, and how utterly worthless any currency has to become for it to be needed as a banknote.


Zimbabwe's 100 trillion dollar note

One hundred trillion dollars, just think how much that is, and how utterly worthless any currency has to become for it to be needed as a banknote.

And in Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation crisis of 2008, 100 trillion dollars was not enough to buy a loaf of bread.

14 years later and things have improved, you can now get around 500 Zimbabwean dollars for £1.

The 100 trillion dollar note is no more, but is still a sought-after collectors' item.


This is how you can tell the internet has taken over when a meme about a confused dog becomes an actual currency.

Cryptocurrency experts weren't happy with the rise of Bitcoin, so like any typical solution, they decided to use the iconic Shiba Inu to make Dogecoin.

It started as a joke but quickly became a real currency, and several online services accept Dogecoin as payment.

Tesla's billionaire owner Elon Musk is now involved in a lawsuit over claims he ran a accuses him of running a Dogecoin pyramid scheme.

Zairean Zaire

Zaire is now the country known as the Democratic Republic of Congo.

In 1997, the dictator Mobutu Sese Seko was overthrown.

To give an idea about what the former dictator was like, his obituary in the New York Times said: "He built his political longevity on three pillars: violence, cunning, and the use of state funds to buy off enemies.

"His systematic looting of the national treasury and major industries gave birth to the term 'kleptocracy' to describe a rule of official corruption that reputedly made him one of the world's wealthiest heads of state."

After he was overthrown, the new government didn't want anything to do with him.

However, the new government needed new money, but every bank note still had the face of the deposed dictator.

So, they came up with an innovative solution and used hole punches to punch his face out of every note.

The notes are no longer in use and once again are collectors' items.

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Scientists from the NSC and the University of Leicester created the Quasi Universal Intergalactic Denomination (QUID).

It was made as 'space currency' for interplanetary trades.

Professor George Fraser from the University of Leicester explained in 2007: "None of the existing payment systems we use on earth – like cash, credit or debitcards – could be used in space.

"Anything with sharp edges, like coins, would be a risk to astronauts while the chips and magnetic strips used in our cards on Earth would be damaged beyond repair by cosmic radiation."

It was made with smooth edges so it wouldn't damage spacecraft and maintained durability; it was made with Teflon.

The currency wasn't popular, and many called it 'useless.'

One QUID was worth about 11 dollars, but no-one could seem to explain what astronauts would use it for while floating around space.

Canadian $10 bill

The Canadians take an extravagant approach to their money, which is decorated with national sports like ice hockey.

Canadian dollar bills are one of the most colorful in the world.

The country was the first to make bank notes out of plastic, followed by the UK.

The innovation continued in 2019 when the Canadians designed a vertical $10 bill.

Switzerland is another country with vertical banknotes,

Somalian colorful coins

In Somalia, they are known for making colorful and weird-shaped coins.

There have been coins like guitars, flags, motorbikes, and animals.

They were made specifically to celebrate special events, and there are limited amounts.

Image: Drew Stephens, Flickr

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