King Charles III won’t appear on Australia’s cash as country drops U.K. royals from banknotes

Australia has decided it’s had enough of the British monarchy – at least on its dollar bills. The country will replace the last of its banknotes featuring the late Queen Elizabeth II with something much closer to home.

Britain’s King Charles III, the late Queen’s first son and successor, may have inherited the throne, but his face will not appear on Australia’s five-dollar bills.

Australian royals
Australian 5 dollar notes are pictured in Sydney on September 10, 2022. King Charles III Will not appear on Australia’s new $5 bill, the country’s central bank has announced, signaling an exit from the British monarchy from Australian banknotes, although it is still expected to appear on coins.

Mark Baker/AP

“I think it’s absolutely brilliant,” said Leanne Nijemeisland from Sydney. “This is Australia.”

Instead of the king, the Australian government has decided that new five-dollar bills will carry an image honoring the country’s indigenous culture.

“The five dollar bill will say more about our history and heritage and our country and I see that as a good thing,” said Australian Treasurer Jim Chalmers.

How the British Empire and Commonwealth have changed over the years


The British monarch is formally Australia’s head of state, but Queen Elizabeth’s death in September resurfaced Questions about what role the British royals should still play in former British colonies – if any.

“We are in Australia. We must be a republic. We have nothing to do with the monarchy,” said Sydney resident Stewart Fairbairn.

“The Queen is broken and I don’t think Charles is capable of that,” agreed Robyn Welsh.

Queen Elizabeth II’s face still appears on more than a dozen currencies circulating around the world.

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The UK will start rolling out new banknotes with the image of King Charles next year, but particularly with Australia’s move, it’s unclear how many other countries will cling to the tradition.

Not everyone in Australia is happy that the monarch is being replaced.

A Sydney resident, who did not give her name, said: “The Queen is amazing and so we should remember her fondly. Perhaps the king can make a different note but keep the queen.”

The face of Charles will make it onto Australia’s coins, but the monarchy’s 100-year monopoly on the country’s cash has finally ended.

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