Mongolia’s official currency is the tögrög or tugrik, with the sign of ₮ and the international currency code of MNT. Before, it was subdivided into 100 möngö (similar to cents). Möngö coins have stopped circulating around the country because of inflation. They were abandoned and are now sold to coin collectors and tourists as novelty items to be collected or as souvenirs to be given to tourists. During 2010, the Mongolian tugrik was hailed as the best performing currency in the whole world.
The tugrik was introduced on December 1925 at a value roughly equivalent to one Soviet Ruble. Other currencies like the Mongolian Dollar were later replaced by the tugrik – which became the sole currency – on April 1928. At the time of socialism, the currency were circulated at 1 möngö, 2 möngö, 5 möngö, 10 möngö, 15 möngö, 20 möngö, 50 möngö, and 1 tugrik. During the time of the Mongolian People’s Republic, banknotes were fashioned like the Soviet Ruble. This even includes the design, line up and color. The denominations were 1 tugrik, 2 tugrik, 5 tugrik, 10 tugrik, 25 tugrik, 50 tugrik, and 100 tugrik. Below is the list of the banknotes with their specific color during that era:
1 tugrik –brown color
2 tugrik –green color
5 tugrik –blue color
10 tugrik –green color
20 tugrik –red color
25 tugrik –lilac color
50 tugrik – also of green color
100 tugrik – also of brown color
Old banknotes were printed in the Soviet Union, while the new ones done in Great Britain. When the Mongolian People’s Republic ended in 1990, higher tugrik values were issued. Currently, the highest denomination is 20,000 tugrik note.
Exchange rates differ on a daily basis. The Mongolian Tugrik changes as well. Currently, for February 23, 2011, 1 tugrik or = 0.00080 US Dollar.
With a hundred tugrik or tögrög, one can ride in a trolleybus in Ulaanbaatar. A ride across town in a regular bus in Ulaanbaatar can cost a person about 200 tugrik. 400 tugrik might buy the average bottled water.