Meet Norway’s New Banknotes

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New Norwegian banknote series

Launched this month, the new 1,000 krone note completes the series of Norway’s all-new banknotes.

Cash might be on its way out, but Norway still makes an effort! Use of cash, and high value notes in particular, has dropped in Norway. However, that's not stopped NorgesBank introducing a brand new series of banknotes over the past two years.

With last week's release of the 1,000-krone denomination, the set is now complete. And it's a beauty!

The new 1,000 krone note

The 1,000-krone note was launched last week at the Institute of Marine Research at Bergen Aquarium. The high value note is rarely used in ATMs, so you’ll do well to get hold of one! As with the other banknotes in the series, the note is inspired by the ocean.

The old version can still be used until November 2020. Most of the previous notes in lower denominations have already been withdrawn. However, it will be possible to change them. “Norges Bank is obliged to exchange the old banknote for at least the next ten years,” said NorgesBank’s Leif Veggum.

Following the maritime iconography of the series, the design of the note is said to represent “that carries us forward.”

Norway's new 1,000-krone note
Norway's new 1,000-krone note. Photo: NorgesBank

So much of Norway's industry is based on the ocean. There's the vast hydropower industry that powers almost all of the country, to the oil and gas hidden beneath the seas. Of course, the fishing and maritime industry has long been an important backbone of the country' economy, and the fjords are an important pull for the tourism industry.

The front of the note features an ocean wave. The back depicts a much calmer ocean view out to the horizon. Shades of purple are used throughout for a truly distinctive look.

If you take a closer look, more details appear. The horizontal lines common to the whole series are longer on the note, indicating a gale. There are also depictions of two water molecules on the reverse of the note.

Celebrating Norwegian maritime history

According to Norges Bank, each denomination features an easily recognised primary motif on one side that communicates central characteristics of Norwegian maritime history.

New Norwegian 100 krone note

“Norway is a small country, but a major maritime and coastal nation. Our geography and our abundance of natural resources combined with initiative, knowledge and hard work has made us prosperous,” said Norges Bank.

“We have always been – and in the future always will be – closely tied to the sea. For transportation and contact, for food and nutrients, for energy production, recreation and as a source of inspiration. The sea provides us with challenges, positive experiences and a horizon to which we can fix our gaze – towards the infinite and unknown.”

The full series

The full set of Norway's new banknotes is now out in circulation. The colourful set of notes featuring iconic Norwegian imagery began to be introduced from the summer of 2017.

Complete range

The denominations include:

  • 50: The sea that binds us together
  • 100: The sea that takes us out into the world
  • 200: The sea that feeds us
  • 500: The sea that gives us prosperity
  • 1,000: The sea that carries us forward

Here are the original design concepts. The final notes do differ slightly from these, but feature similar imagery and colours.

Design by competition

Early in 2014, Norges Bank held a design competition for the motifs that would be used on the new series of banknotes. Following the competition, Norges Bank's experts continued to work with the motif proposals to ensure sufficient security elements could be incorporated.

The new Norwegian thousand krone note

Norway's national bank seems to have managed the daunting task of creating a beautiful banknote that's also super secure. The banknotes are printed on cotton paper, which has been treated with a dirt-resistant coating intended to extend its lifetime.

Using cotton paper means more security features can be incorporated. The intaglio process used for the banknotes results in printing you can “feel” with your fingers.

Of course, Norway is fast transitioning to a cashless society with the fast adoption of mobile banking and mobile payments, so these could very well be the last Norwegian banknotes ever produced.

Norway's awesome new banknotes

Photo credits: Norges Bank

About David Nikel

Originally from the UK, David now lives in Trondheim and was the original founder of Life in Norway back in 2011. He now works as a professional writer on all things Scandinavia.

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6 thoughts on “Meet Norway’s New Banknotes”

  1. I would like to thank you for for information. Your blog your everything on Norway. I am hoping to visit next year but, can you tell me if its safe for lone females to travel there? I havent travelled before and I’m basically crappin it! I’m in my forties which makes it worse..please can you advise. Thankyou.

    • Hello! I am a Norwegian female, and I just want to say if you have any questions, I can also help out! 🙂 I actually JUST came from USA on my first alone travel ever (and first time going to USA at all!) and I could come with tips and such if you’d like! Traveling alone in Norway is not really “dangerous” but there’s things to know, especially expensive things etc. 🙂
      Hit me up if you’d wanna chat! 🙂

  2. Hi, I have old notes. Can I change these at a bank in Norway? When do I need to get them to the bank for the closing date?


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