Tajikistan uses the somoni as currency. Although you might be able to pay in places with dollar, somoni is still the currency of daily use.
ATM cash withdrawal
2 of the main banks in Tajikistan went bankrupt again in 2016: Tajiksodirotbank and Agroinvestbank. Getting money out of a cash machine has become increasingly difficult since 2016.
It is still possible in Dushanbe, Khujand and Khorog, but be ready to run around a bit trying to get money. Many people wonder: should I bring all my money in cash? Know that you can take out money usually. It is not always certain, though, and it might take some time. To avoid money stress, have at least some cash on hand.
There are ATM’s in Dushanbe, Penjikent, Khujand, Khorog, Isfara, Istaravshan, Qurghon-Teppa and even in smaller places. Not in Murghab, though! MasterCard only works at Kazkom ATMs, present in Khujand and Dushanbe. It’s possible to withdraw USD there as well. Other banks advertise Mastercard on their ATMs, but Kazkom is the only one actually able to process requests at the moment. No reports on Visa and Maestro acceptance so far.
A full list of ATM’s can be found at Tajiksodirotbank.
Currency exchange Tajikistan
Both US dollar and Euro are widely accepted in Tajikistan. In smaller places without official currency exchange, people might be more willing to take dollar than euro.
There is still a black market for dollars, but the exchange rate is almost the same on the bazaar as in the banks, and heavy penalties make this a very hidden and not very interesting option.
In any case, exchanging dollar into somoni will never be a problem. The other way around is much more difficult.
Credit cards and money transfer
Tajikistan is a cash economy. Paying by credit card or travellers’ cheque will be possible only in high-end hotels. Money transfer on the other hand, is everywhere due to the high level of remittances sent back by Tajiks working abroad.
If you’re trying to figure out how much money you will need for your trip to Tajikistan, check out the travel budget page.