Canada officially stopped producing and distributing pennies back in 2013. And by now, you’ve likely noticed that they are no longer part of general circulation.
In saying that, people often wonder whether or not Canadian banks will still accept pennies in exchange for different denominations. For example, could I bring 500 pennies into Scotiabank and get $5 in return?
With that question in mind, I did some research and contacted the big 5 banks here in Canada and asked them directly, “Will [your bank] still accept my pennies if I bring them in for exchange? If so, how would I go about making the exchange?”
I was pleasantly surprised with what each bank had to say to me (screenshots included further down).
In short, Scotiabank, RBC, CIBC, TD and BMO all still accept Canadian Pennies at their branches. Before bringing your pennies in for exchange however, these banks recommend that the pennies be pre rolled in order to facilitate the deposit.
If you don’t have time to continue on throughout the article, just know that all big banks, and likely smaller banks too, will accept your pennies. But again, just make sure you roll them before bringing them in for exchange.
In the next section of this article I will go through more specifically what each bank said about accepting pennies.
Before I go into this section though, it’s important to note that banks aren’t the only places you can cash in Canadian Pennies. In my article, 5 Places You Can Cash in Canadian Pennies, I talked about four other methods on how you can exchange your coins.
Do Banks Still Take Pennies in Canada?
So as the title of this article suggests, we actually talked to all the five major banks here in Canada and basically straight up asked them, do you guys accept pennies for exchange?
And as I stated earlier, I was pleasantly surprised with how quickly each bank got back to me. Not only that, but I found it interesting how their responses were all quite similar.
In the table below, I’ve copied and pasted the responses I received from each major bank.
|Scotiabank||If you have pennies, you can still return them to the bank, but they have to be rolled into denominations.|
|RBC||Rolled coins can be deposited by RBC clients with tellers. Please note that we currently do not offer coin counter services or rolls in our branches. For pennies. there are 50 coins to be in a roll at a value of $0.50.|
|CIBC||Yes, the coins have to be rolled and select Banking Centres accept rolled coins, we can deposit them to your bank account. We recommend contacting your Banking Centre directly prior to your visit to confirm whether they’ll accept these coins.|
|TD||I’m pleased to confirm that your local branch will indeed accept your pennies for deposit; however, they must be rolled in order for us to accept them.|
|BMO||You can bring your pennies at the branch to make a deposit to your BMO bank account, if it is less than the minimum for a roll Otherwise, they’ll need to be rolled to facilitate the deposit.|
So as you can see, there is really no question about this. All five of the major banks here in Canada will accept pennies for exchange. And while yes, at first I was surprised by this, it makes sense.
Even though Canadian Pennies stopped being produced in February of 2013, they still hold their $.01 value. While some retail stores may not except pennies anymore, it is not because they aren’t worth anything and is more likely due to the inconvenience.
But to go back to my example at the beginning of the article, 500 pennies is still indeed worth $5.
As promised earlier, I will now go through in detail what each bank had to say to me about accepting Canadian Pennies at their institutions.
Scotiabank will accept your pennies if you bring them in for exchange. As you can see from the screenshot below, they only ask that you have them rolled into denominations.
Just to get 100% clarity, I went on to ask – If I bring in 1000 pennies, will I get $10 back? Their response was “Yes, the value of a penny would still remain the same.”
So if you bank with Scotiabank, rest assured you can bring your old pennies into any branch for exchange, just make sure you have them rolled!
As shown in the screenshot below, RBC certainly accepts pennies at their banks, but similar to Scotiabank, they just ask that before giving your pennies to the teller, make sure they are rolled. Which in my opinion is a pretty fair request.
While RBC does go on to say they don’t have rolls at their branches, you can get these rolls at most dollar stores nation wide. And they are dirt cheap for a big bag of them, so don’t fret over that if you don’t have any currently.
So if you’re a RBC banker and you have your pennies rolled, you should feel 100% confident walking into your branch that you’ll get the same value back in exchange for your pennies.
When speaking with CIBC, while they did say they accept pennies, it seems like from a select number of banking centres.
Now like all the other banks, you’ll need to have your pennies rolled, but before doing that, you should give the branch you plan on going to a call to make sure they are one of the locations that actually do accept these coins.
Beneath the screenshot below I’ve include a CIBC branch locator which will have your banks contact info included in it.
If the branch you go to doesn’t accept them, I would just call around to a few other ones in your area until you find one. At the very least, it’ll save you from driving from branch to branch trying to deposit pennies.
TD is another one of the big five Canadian banks that will most definitely accept your pennies.
As shown in the screenshot below, TD “is pleased to confirm that your local branch will indeed accept your pennies for deposit”.
So other than that, I don’t really have much else. Like all the other banks, TD will only accept them if they are rolled. So don’t walk in with pennies falling out of your coat pocket. Find some penny rolls, roll them up neatly and bring them in for exchange.
PS – TD definitely wins the award for being the most polite. Geoff deserves a raise!
Last but not least we have BMO. BMO will also accept pennies to any customers that bring them in for exchange.
If you have less than the minimum for a roll (which I believe is 50 pennies), you don’t need them rolled, however if you have more than a roll, you’ll want to make sure you in fact roll them up for deposit.
But at the end of the day, if you don’t have more than 50 pennies to deposit, what’s the point? Are you really going to go out of your way for less than $.50? I doubt it. I certainly wouldn’t.
Related Financial Geek Article: What Are Canadian Pennies Made Of?
The Bottom Line
And there you have it!
The bottom line is that the big five Canadian banks all accept pennies. The only ask is that you roll them up before bringing them in for exchange.
If you don’t feel like going to a bank, or you don’t have any penny rolls, then check out my article 5 Places You Can Cash in Canadian Pennies for some more ideas on what you can do to exchange your pennies.
Thanks for reading, as always I hope you found what you were looking for here.