Hate dealing with coins and have been leaving them in a pile or fish bowl? You might be surprised that those mouldy, forsaken coins can add up to a lot of money. But first, you have to figure out how to deposit coins without incurring coin deposit fees.
Most banks’ coin deposit machines charge a fee to deposit coins and most times, it’s per piece of coin, regardless of value. Let’s say we take an average charge of $2 for depositing 100 coins, so that would be $0.02 per piece. This means that if you are depositing a 5-cent coin, you are actually losing 40% of the coin’s value!
Not to worry, there are creative ways around this predicament. Let’s take a look at coin deposit fees and some cost-effective ways to deposit your coins or to exchange them for notes.
Coin deposit fees in Singapore
|100 coins||1,000 coins|
|POSB||$1.50 ($0.015 per piece)||$15|
|OCBC||$1.50 (over the counter)$1.20 (via ATM, at $0.012 per coin)||$15 (over the counter)$12 (via ATM)|
|UOB||$2||$20 ($2 for every 100 pieces or part thereof|
|CIMB||$5||$50 ($5 for every 100 pieces or part thereof)|
Depositing your coins with banks is not the cheapest but it’s probably the most fuss-free option as there are many branches and coin deposit machines sprawled across the island. Of course, you should already have an account with the bank.
POSB and OCBC are the cheapest banks to do your coin deposits at $0.015 per piece. It’s even cheaper to deposit with OCBC if you use the self-service machines instead of depositing them over the counter.
UOB charges $0.02 per piece and CIMB is the most expensive at $0.05 per piece. However, if that’s your bank and there’s a branch right across your home, it’s still a reasonable fee especially if all your coins are $1 coins. That’s depositing $100 worth of coins for a few bucks.
On this note, it’s good to be reminded that since coin deposit machines/services charge by per coin, it will make sense to consolidate and try to deposit more $1 coins to prevent losing value in deposit fees.
Singapore mint is the second cheapest option to deposit your coins. They sometimes hold campaigns where you can deposit your coins for free at their specific locations. Keep a lookout of these on their website’s announcement page or their Facebook page.
The most cost-effective option would be depositing through Certis’ self-service coin deposit machines. Your money will be directly deposited into any bank in Singapore of your choice.
If you have 1st series coins (i.e. 2 generations older than current series), you can deposit all denominations for free. For 2nd series coins, you can deposit 1-cent and 5-cent coins for free and for 3rd series coins, 5-cent coins are deposited for free. Singapore commemorative coins and Brunei coins can also be deposited for free.
The only setback about depositing with Certis is the inconvenience as there are only 4 locations: Bukit Merah, Paya Lebar, Jurong East and Jurong Logistics Hub. 1st series coins and commemorative coins are only accepted at Jurong Logistics Hub. Then again, coin depositing is not something you need to do regularly anyway so this shouldn’t be a problem.
Apart from the options above, did you know there are other ways to get rid of your coins for free?
3 ways to deposit coins for free
1. Take them to hawkers or wet market stalls
You know who loves coins? Hawker stall and wet market stall owners for their sale transactions. Taxi drivers too! One win-win way to get rid of your coins is to organise them neatly into their denominations and then change them with your favourite stall owner.
Of course, it helps to first be a fan of their stall and befriend them. They would then be less wary and more glad to do you a favour of converting your piggy bank savings to notes.
2. Dump the coins into coin deposit machines at Sheng Siong/Fairprice
Self-checkout machines at supermarkets like Sheng Siong and Fairprice accept coins too (no matter how many) for your grocery purchases. Even if you don’t need to buy any groceries, you can buy a pack of sweets and get your change in notes.
The machines at Sheng Siong have a specific coin exchange function too, to change coins into notes. However, to use this service, you need a minimum of $100 in coins and the exchange can only be done during their off-peak hours from 1 – 5pm daily.
Apparently according to this coin deposit reddit thread, these machines can even filter out foreign coins so it saves you the trouble of going through your coins.
3. Deposit them into a child’s account
Another great way deposit your coins for free is to deposit them into a younger one’s savings account. It could be your child, your niece/nephew, or any child that you want to bless, really.
DBS/POSB waives off the coin deposit fee if it is deposited into a POSBkids account. The waiver is only for the first 1,000 pieces per month and is applicable only if the kid is below 16 years old.
For, OCBC, the coin deposit fee is waived if it is deposited in a Mighty Savers programme, an account meant for children to learn about saving.
If you are a parent, the best way is probably to deposit your coins for free into your child’s Child Development Account (CDA), which can be set up with either POSB, OCBC or UOB. For the uninformed, the Baby Bonus CDA is a co-savings scheme by the Singapore government and parents for children.
Savings deposited by parents into the CDA account will be matched dollar-for-dollar by the government, up to a cap that is dependent on the child’s birth order (1st and 2nd child’s cap is at $3,000, 3rd and 4th child’s cap is at $9,000 and so on).
The money in CDA accounts can earn 2% p.a. interest but note that you can’t withdraw the money at your any whim and fancy. It can be only used for child development needs at Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF)-approved institutions like schools and hospitals.
Which coin depositing method have you tried before?