Pesata power takes on the credit crunch

Even out here in the land of sunshine the credit crunch is biting, and coupled with the dwindling number of tourists, the euro is under pressure. But hold on, who is that wrinkly looking savior, leaping to the rescue? it’s our old friend the pesata, gone but not forgotten, it is now being used to prop up struggling business’s.


A dry cleaners, Tintoreria Avenida,  in Las Palmas, Gran Canaria has started accepting pesatas, and customers are taking the bait. The Euro was brought in just over 6 years ago, amid a lot of wailing and gnashing of teeth, but Banco España will still convert pesatas into euros, but you have to have a decent amount. The bank estimates that there is still a staggering 1,778 million euros worth of pesatas out there, made up of 950 million in notes and the rest in coins.

Even now, quite a few Spanish products and services have the euro and pesata price shown, and many older citizens refer back to pesatas to guage how much something is in “real money”. A lot of people blame the introduction of the euro for prices going up, but some business owners chose to round up prices out of greed, while others did a straight conversion.

All this could be to come for the UK one day, then maybe spending a penny will become known as euro-nating. Although there are a few other places in mainland Spain that will take the pesata, it’s a gimmick and the Pios of Gran Canaria seem to have embraced the euro, they don’t mind using them as missiles to throw at Tenerife fans in the derby games.

Still, it might be worth while diving down the back of your sofa, to see if you can find a Fistful Of Pesatas, someone must have the missing ones. Just a thought, if shops are going to open up to other currency, I have some UK change I can try and pass off, and maybe those 1970 Esso World Cup coins could buy me a few bottles of Dorada.