The Best Places in the USA for Buying Chinese Yuan Renminbi

Buy Chinese yuan renminbi online and get the best exchange rate.

How to buy Chinese yuan renminbi online, at a bank or on the move

Wise travel money card

Chinese yuan travel money card

Travel money cards are a safe and convenient way to spend in Chinese yuan (CNY) - and if you pick the right one they could help you save on currency conversion, too. Top up your card balance in dollars and convert those dollars to yuan to spend in stores and restaurants, or withdraw cash from ATMs when you need it. Easy.

Wise debit card

The Wise travel money card is likely to get you a better yuan exchange rate and lower fees compared to your bank. Spending on the card will use the local currency if you have it in your Wise account - no matter where in the world you are. And if not, the card can simply auto-convert your money at the real rate, for a small fee.

You can also withdraw Chinese yuan from an ATM whenever you need them - giving you the safety of spending with a card, and the convenience of cash.

It’s free to open a Wise account, with a one time fee of 9 USD for the Wise debit card. Converting USD to CNY costs 1.06% with Wise - making this by far one of the cheapest ways to get your hands on travel money for China.

Chinese yuan renminbi online is the cheapest way to buy.


Often this is the best way to buy Chinese yuan renminbi (CNY). It is faster and cheaper buy your Chinese yuan online. The USD to CNY exchange rate is better online and give you more yuan for your US dollars. You can reserve your order, pick it up in a store or even have it delivered to your door.

Currency Exchange International (CXI)

Currency Exchange International specializes in providing foreign currency exchange at great rates with superior customer service. CXI owns and operates more than 30 branch locations across the United States and offers online foreign currency ordering through its website.

Buying Chinese yuan renminbi online for home delivery is easy with CXI. Select from more than 90 foreign currencies and receive it as soon as next day. Available in most areas.

Banks offer poor exchange rates for the USD to CNY.


You can buy Chinese yuan with dollars at major banks like Wells Fargo and Bank of America. You will need to be a bank customer already and can order it online easily.

Banks do offer a wide range of currencies that you can buy but make sure you spend your foreign currency overseas because you might not be able to convert it back to dollars when you get back home.

In some cases, you can choose to receive your order in small, large or mixed denominations but it is subject to availability.

Currency exchange services offered by the bank might not offer the best CNY to USD rates but they are convenient, particularly if you are an existing customer.

When you buy Chinese yuan from the bank you can pay with credit card, cash or from your bank account.

At foreign currency exchanges you can buy yuan for a good rate with reasonable customer service in the United States.

Foreign Currency Exchange

Money changers can be the cheapest way to buy Chinese yuan. The problem is, it can be a hard to find them outside of the city and they regularly run out of less common currencies.

Often the exchange rates are on a board facing the front of the shop, so finding the USD to CNY rate is easy. Ask what transaction fees they charge for the foreign exchange and if it cost more to pay with credit cards.

Money Tips

  • The exchange rates are better in major cities. So it can be worth going there if you're exchanging more than $2,000
  • Always ask for a better rate. We've found you can often get a better deal just by asking, particularly if you're buying more than $1000
Yuan is the currency of China and you can buy it at the airport.


Yes, you can buy currency at the airport. But that doesn't mean you should. While it's convenient, it's also very expensive. You will receive less CNY for your USD at the airport.

Most airport currency exchange services accept cash and credit cards.


Money Tips

  • Ordering yuan online and picking it up at the airport is much cheaper than buying it in person
  • If you've run out of time before your trip, it's might be better to buy your yuan when you get to China, or use your cards instead

Want to find the best time to buy?

Simply use our free email alerts to track the CNY rate daily. Or set the rate you want and we'll email you when it's time to buy your yuan.

By Natalie Robertson Updated July 5th, 2022