Currency and Money in Palestine: Before the First World War Palestine was under the rule of the Ottoman Empire which used the Ottoman lira at that time.
From 1920 to 1948 the currency used was the Palestinian pound which had the same value as the Pound Sterling.
In 1948 the British Mandate came into power and the currency was replaced by the Israeli Shekel in the areas that had been occupied by the Israeli Forces. The Jordanian Dinar was used in the West Bank and the Egyptian pound in Gaza Strip. Since the Six Day War in 1967 and up until now the Israeli Shekel has been used in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, especially since the signing of the Paris Protocol in 1994, which makes the Palestinian economy dependent upon the Israeli economy.
The Israeli Shekel is symbolized by this sign (₪). It is divided into 100 agoras or agorat (cents), the currency code for the Israeli Shekel today is “NIS”, New Israeli Shekel.
In addition to the Shekel, the Jordanian Dinar and the American Dollar are also used in Palestine in some circumstances such as buying houses, land, cars, and all high value properties.
It is no problem to come to Palestine carrying American Dollars, Euros and Pound Sterling. In Palestine there are many exchange agencies and agents, as well as banks, where you can easily convert your money to NIS.
For up-to-date exchange rates, visit the following website: http://www.xe.com/currencyconverter/
Generally, there are 3.5 to 4 NIS to the U.S. dollar, and 4 to the European Euro. Banks are open from 8 A.M. to 3 P.M. ATM’s are open 24 hours. The major banks found in Palestine are the Arab Bank, the Bank of Palestine, the Cairo Amman Bank, and the Bank of Jordan.
Most stores do not accept credit cards. The best way to cover your daily expenses is to use an ATM card as it is shown above; otherwise, have enough cash on you for your entire trip. ATM’s are readily available in most places in Palestine.
Be aware that the Bank of Jordan, the Arab Bank, and, currently the Cairo Amman Bank, only give money in Jordanian dinars, which then must be further exchanged into NIS.