• The days of Canada using paper banknotes (bills) seem to be numbered. Some of the new polymer banknotes have already made their way into public circulation, and the rest aren’t too far behind.• You can already find $100 polymer bills and $50 polymer bills in circulation, and in November 2012 the $20 bills will also be part of the new way. By the end of 2013, both $5 bills and $10 bills will join the Canadian polymer currency revolution.• Here is more information about the new Canadian polymer banknotes:
What Are Polymer Bills?• Polymer is a film that is both smooth and very durable. The polymer bills are still flimsy like a paper bill, but are far more difficult to rip or tear. The Bank of Canada states that polymer bills are also recyclable, and will be recycled once they are too damaged or worn for continued circulation.
Why Polymer?• The primary reason that Canada is switching to polymer banknotes is to stay one step ahead of the counterfeiters. Currency counterfeiting is a huge problem all over the world, and by removing the paper money from circulation and gradually replacing it with polymer, the Canadian government feels that counterfeiting will take a serious hit.• The durability of polymer is also a reason it is going to be used in the future. Polymer is said to last about 2 ½ times longer than traditional paper bills, which will save time and money in the future.
Look & Feel• Polymer bills will feel slippery when you first touch them, but as they circulate that slippery feeling will lessen. After dealing with paper money for your entire life, it’s easy to feel a little apprehensive about this ‘plastic’ feel, but like with anything, people will get used to it. The current paper bills have been used since 1935, so most people don’t know anything else. The move from $1 and $2 bills to coins took some getting used to, but everyone has made the transition smoothly enough.• Most of the bills will look similarly to the originals, but will have the slight ‘shine’ that is indicative of the material. As the for the design, elements of the old bill’s designs are mixed with newer elements to create a unique look for the new bills. Much of the design elements of the bills are centered around security.
Security• Since the new polymer banknotes are supposed to combat counterfeiting, it’s important that they contain several security features. Some of the security features you can expect to see include: – Raised ink – Metallic pictures and portraits – Hidden numbers – Transparent text – Numbers appearing in reverse – Maple leaves on the border and in windows
• It’s also possible to flip the bills over and see the same patterns and numbers on the opposite side, in order to check the authenticity of the bill. All of the various innovative security measures should help to make Canadian polymer currency one that counterfeiters would just as soon ignore.• With the new bills and the public’s willingness to report suspected counterfeiting activity, everyone will be better off.
General Public Benefits• The security features that are present in Canadian polymer bills benefit the general public because they are easy to verify and if you are in possession of a counterfeit bill, you won’t be reimbursed. You won’t be charged if it’s obvious you had no knowledge that it was counterfeit, but you likely won’t get a new one back.• The new bills will also be easy to handle for everyone and you won’t have to be quite so delicate to avoid tearing the bills as you handle them. Paper bills seem to tear with relative ease just going in and out of the wallet.
• Raised features, large numbers or an electronic signal from bank note readers will help people who can’t see at all or who have partial sight, recognize individual bills. These features will give back a good deal of independence to those who have had some taken away along with their sight. These features are essentially the same as with the Canadian Journey series of banknotes, but they will last longer.
Will Regular Counters Work?• With the new polymer bills, you may have to get a new currency counter if you’re in a profession or situation where counting large sums of money is necessary. Reputable suppliers will provide ‘polymer ready’ counters and sorters, but you may have to switch or have your old one adjusted to count both. Ask your supplier how they plan to handle the new bills, and if they don’t have a logical plan in place, go find a cash counter supplier who does.
• If you are looking for a new polymer bill counter then trust the experts at CashTech Currency