Essential tips when travelling to Georgia
When travelling to a foreign country one must know a few important things. So here we have prepared some basic things you should know concerning the national currency, exchange rates and shopping spots when travelling in Georgia.
The national currency is the Georgian Lari (currency code: GEL) and it amounts to 0.41691 USD and 0.35330 EU.
Coins in use are: 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50 Tetri and 1, 2 Lari (GEL)
Banknotes in use are: 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 Lari (GEL)
You can exchange money at almost any bank in Georgia, yet it is better to convert money at local exchange points because the exchange rate is much better and more profitable for you. However, if enhanced security is your top priority, you can get GEL at Georgia’s banks such as TBC Bank, Bank of Georgia, ProCredit Bank and others. The exchange rate is usually almost identical at all the banks with only slight differences among them.
Currently the exchange rate for 1 USD set by the National Bank of Georgia is 2.3888 GEL, yet it changes slightly from time to time, so before exchanging money check the National Bank of Georgia official website to see the exchange rate of Lari against foreign currencies.
As for local exchange points, there are plenty of them all over Tbilisi. However, one must be careful when exchanging money at currency changing booths. The best places to exchange money are Kazbegi Street, Saburtalo Street and the area around the Railway Station, since exchange rates are far better at these locations.
After doing some sightseeing one may want to go shopping as well. There are several major shopping malls in Georgia where one can find international brands.
Tbilisi Mall, the first large-scale multifunctional shopping center built in accordance with international standards is located on the 16th km of Agmashenebeli Alley, Tbilisi. You can easily get there by car or public transport. The shopping mall operates every day, from 10:00 to 22:00. Aside from the various stores, the venue incorporates several cafes and a cinema.
East Point is another large shopping mall occupying a vast area on the outskirts of the city. The mall is located #2 Al. Tvalchrelidze Street, on the highway to Tbilisi Airport. Various international brands are represented here as well as several cafés and restaurants, a cinema, a bowling alley, laser combat and a virtual reality space.
There are some small shopping centers in the center of the city as well. Pixel at #34 Chavchavadze Avenue, CITY MALL at #1 Kavtaradze Street, Merani Mall at #42 Rustaveli Avenue, Karvasla Shopping Mall on Dadiani Street, Tbilisi Central near the Railway Station and Gldani Mall on Vasadze Street. Some of these shopping centers include big supermarkets as well.