500 and 1000 currency notes ban in India. What Travellers, Visitors, NRIs and Tourists need to know?


Currency of Rs. 500 and Rs.1,000 ceased to be legal tender from midnight on Tuesday (8-Nov-2016) in India. The decision was taken to root out the menace of black money and corruption.




Notes of Rs. 100, Rs. 50, Rs. 20, 10, Rs. 5, Rs. 2 and Re. 1 remain legal tender and will be unaffected by the decision. The Reserve Bank of India will issue new Rs. 500 and Rs. 2,000 notes starting from November 10.




It may take a while for the banks to recalibrate their ATMs. Once the ATMs start functioning, there will be a withdrawal limit of Rs. 2,000 per per card per day upto 18th November, 2016. The limit will be increased to Rs. 4,000 per day per card from 19th November 2016 onwards.

There will, however, be an overall limit on withdrawal from banks of Rs. 10,000 a day and Rs. 20,000 a week, which will be increased in the coming days. There will be no restriction of any kind on non-cash payments by cheques, demand drafts, debit or credit cards and electronic fund transfer.

Travellers, especially foreign tourists, need to take note of this situation.

  • International airports will make arrangements for arriving and departing passengers to exchange up to Rs 5000 worth of old notes for the new legal tender.
  • For exchange upto 4000 in cash you may go to any bank branch with valid identity proof.
  • For first 72 hours from Nov 8 midnight i.e. till 11 Nov midnight government hospitals will accept these old notes, pharmacies in government hospitals will accept these notes with Doctor’s prescription.
  • Old notes will be accepted for railway ticket booking and air travel booking for the first 72 hours.
  • Additionally, For 72 hours old notes will be accepted at petrol , diesel and CNG stations authorised by public sector companies, milk booths, crematoriums, and government co-operative stores.

IF you are not in India right now, this is what you should do: 

If you have OHD (Old High Denomination) banknotes in India, you may authorise in writing enabling another person in India to deposit the notes into your bank account. The person so authorised has to come to the bank branch with the OHD banknotes, the authority letter given by you and a valid identity proof.

Valid Identity proof is any of the following: PassPort, Aadhaar Card, Driving License, Voter ID Card, NREGA Card, PAN Card, Identity Card .