The Portuguese escudo is the currency of Portugal, which was the official currency of Portugal until the introduction of the euro on January 1, 2002. Escudo literally means shield. One of these also adorns the flag of Portugal.
The official ISO code was PTE and the common character of the Portuguese escudo, the so-called Cifrao, is very similar to the dollar symbol, but has two dashes followed by the “S” instead of one.
An escudo was divided into 100 centavos. In the price information, the escudos and centavos were always separated by the so-called cifrao.
Exchanging the old Portuguese currency
The exchange rate between the Portuguese escudo and the euro was established in 1999. To get one euro, you have to exchange 200,482 Portuguese escudos.
The coins of the Portuguese escudo can no longer be exchanged for euros (was possible until December 31, 2002). The exchange of the certificates can still be carried out until February 28, 2022.
The Portuguese escudo was used as a means of payment in Portugal from 1914 to 2002. It replaced the real that had previously been used for centuries.
Due to the high inflation in Portugal, the unofficial unit of account Conto has been popularly used. A Conto was understood to mean 1000 escudos, i.e. 5 euros rounded.
In 1910 the first republic was proclaimed in Portugal. In 1911 they agreed on the first currency reform in Portugal. The previous currency, the real, was gradually abolished until the escudo became the official currency of Portugal in 1914.
Escudo coins were minted in silver for the first time in 1916. Due to high inflation, aluminum-bronze coins were minted in 1924. As a result of the high inflation, it was now possible to mint a much larger edition, as the production costs of the aluminum-bronze coins were significantly lower.
In the further course of history, the Portuguese escudo was always affected by high inflation and had to depreciate again and again against other currencies.
In 1992 the Portuguese decided to join the European Monetary System. This was an important step for the Portuguese to stabilize their domestic economy, which had already to cope with numerous crises due to high inflation.
The introduction of the euro brought the Portuguese more economic stability, so the Portuguese, unlike other nations, do not trust their old currency.