When we visited The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ for the first time last year, I was surprised at just how many unique activities there were that could easily be overlooked. With that in mind, I’m continuing my series to share these incredibly fun experiences. Up now, Gringotts Money Exchange! Money, a Goblin, and the perfect souvenir! Read on.
(A big thank you to Universal Studios Orlando for partnering with us on our trip in order to bring you the best theme park scoop in this sponsored post)
When we talk about The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™, you must know that there are two separate sections, one in each theme park. Know that before you purchase your tickets, something I’ll talk more in detail about in a later post. (NOTE: Scroll down for the best ticket deals at Universal Orlando)
- Hogsmeade™ – Universal’s Islands of Adventure™
- Diagon Alley™ – Universal Studios Florida™
IMPORTANT: To exchange US Dollars for Gringotts money in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™, you’ll need to head to Diagon Alley™.
Gringotts Money Exchange
Head to Diagon Alley, nestled in the very back at Universal Studios Florida™, if you want to immerse yourself even more into the world of Harry Potter.
While you could stay mesmerized gazing at the buildings, shopping for trinkets like Harry did, or even enjoying Butterbeer ice cream, participating in Gringotts Money Exchange is a must.
Gringotts Bank Notes? Yes! Exchange your US currency for actual Gringotts money.
These bank notes can be used for purchases within Diagon Alley™ and Hogsmeade™, and at select locations throughout Universal Orlando Resort™. Don’t worry if you don’t spend them all, as I’ll explain below what you can do.
The Bank Notes Can Be Used As Currency
This is extra fun if the kids will be shopping for souvenirs.
- First, head to Gringotts Money Exchange
- Talk to the Goblin
- Exchange US Currency for Gringotts Bank Notes
As you are walking through the entrance of Diagon Alley, you will inevitably be drawn to the large fire-breathing dragon sitting atop Gringotts Bank. Though you might be tempted to search here to exchange your “Muggle” money, this isn’t the spot. Inside Gringotts Bank is where you will ride Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts™.
Instead, approach Gringotts Bank and the dragon (who breathes fire every 5-10 minutes), then turn right down another alley. It is here where you will find Gringotts Money Exchange.
Surprisingly Small – Easy to Miss
You could easily walk past this place and not realize what you were missing.
Notice the large glass windows with scales measuring gold bars inside.
The room, surprisingly small.
A rope winds around the room, leading you directly before the goblin, and ultimately a bank teller just past him.
The Goblin Experience
The animatronic Goblin behind the counter is all business. His eyes are piercing. His teeth a little too sharp.
Ask him a question and see what he has to say.
TIP: Speak loudly. It can be noisy and he might hear someone and look up, but unless you are loud and clear, chances are he won’t answer your exact question. My daughter was definitely too quiet, but he interacted (especially letting us know he didn’t really want to be bothered – HA!)
Afterwards, step right on up to the bank teller. It is here you can trade your U.S. currency for Gringotts bank notes in either $10 or $20 denominations.
Any unused wizard money can be transferred back into U.S. currency at the Guest Services office in either Universal Studios Florida™ or Universal’s Islands of Adventure™.
The Harry Potter fan in me couldn’t bear to part with my new Gringotts money.
It came home as perhaps one of the most unique souvenirs ever!
TIP: Exchange some money to shop with, but take some home too (either for the scrapbook or kids’ show and tell at school)!
Be on the lookout for more posts and tips for a visit to Universal Orlando and The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ as I continue this series, some already written about below).
YOU WILL ALSO LOVE THESE UNIVERSAL HARRY POTTER POSTS:
TICKET DEALS – Best Universal Studios Ticket Deals and Tips
MUST TRY – Which is Best Butterbeer at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™?
How to Send Mail at Owl Post – The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™.
Hi just wondering if there’s any sort of ‘exchange rate’ or additional charge involved or if it’s just $10 US for $10 Gringotts notes?
When we wentt was an even exchange (making it easier to exchange back if you want to convert to U.S. Dollars again).
Is there anyway to buy the bank notes as a gift, prior to going to universal for the kids to spend once there?
Toni, from as far as I can tell this is the only place you can purchase them. I didn’t see the ability to do that at any gift shop in the parks, resorts, etc.
Carl S. says
Do these work at SpongeBob StorePants in Woody Woodpecker’s Kidzone, and the Kwik-E-Mart in Springfield?
Thanks Carl. I was just there a few weeks ago – I wish I could have asked then for you. Here’s what the official language from Universal is:
“The bank notes can be used for purchases within Diagon Alley™ and Hogsmeade™, and at select locations throughout Universal Orlando Resort™. Any unused wizard money can be transferred back into U.S. currency at the Guest Services office in either Universal Studios Florida™ or Universal’s Islands of Adventure™.”
So there’s no downside to exchanging the money as you can always transfer it back into U.S. Currency thanks to Universal Studios. 🙂
Nicole W. says
Can we use our “muggle” money or do we have to exchange it for gringotts money to purchase items in Harry Potter shops?
Great question. Yes, you may use “muggle” money – aka dollars, credit cards, etc. throughout the Wizarding World of Harry Potter!
So I know you can only exchange for a $10 & $20, but is there smaller currencies you can get back in change? It’s a neat souvenir that my son would love, I’m just not sure I want to dedicate $10 or more to it.
No there wasn’t at least when we visited last year. It was $10 minimum to participate in the fun, but I love the idea of them adding smaller currencies! Fingers crossed!
Jennifer Miller says
We went to Gringotts Bank. I spoke to the Goblin and asked if it was going to rain again. He told me hes a banker not a weatherman and that everyone knows you can have four seasons in one day in Diagon Alley…. he was quite rude (it was great! ) Once people heard my interaction the questions came flying….. We also bought a gift box of beautiful coins there
too. I enjoyed the interaction with the Goblin…
Oh, I love it Jennifer. What a fun experience!
Sara Phillips says
Oh, that’s way too much fun!! I’ll definitely have to do that with the boys when we visit.
Bernie Wallace says
This is a cool idea. I did not know that they did this in the park. Thanks for sharing.
Tammy Woodall says
My brother and his family live in Florida and visit Universal studios often. I’m going to pass this great information to him. Thank you for sharing.
Cathi Crismon says
We have yet to visit Harry Potter at Universal. Bucket list I tell you!!!
Great to know! Thanks!