Thursday, March 21, 2013

Cash Only at Vatican City

If you are heading to Vatican City, come prepared with cash. Only cash will be accepted for museum tickets, souvenirs and any other purchases make within the Vatican City. In the past, visitors have been able to use debit and credit cards and access nearby ATMs. But that has been stopped by the Bank of Italy.

Vatican City is not a member of the European Union and EU rules do not allow member-nations banks, such as the Bank of Italy, from operating in non-European Union nations unless there are measure in place to counteract the financing of terrorism and money laundering.

A July 2012 report, by a department of the Council of Europe, gave the Vatican Bank a passing grade on transparency but it failed on seven other key areas that are used to fight money laundering. The Vatican Bank procedures, criticized severely in the report as regards to money laundering, is now being looked into by Italian Magistrates.

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