The official currency of Samoa is the tala, ST$ which is made up of 100 sene (cents). Before WWI Samoa used the German Mark as its official currency. The German mark was replaced by the New Zealand pound at a rate of 2 tala = 1 pound which was also equal to the New Zealand dollar. This remained Samoa's national currency until July 1967 following the country's political independence from New Zealand.
There are five tala coin denominations (10 sene, 20 sene, 50 sene, 1 tala, 2 tala) which depict various cultural icons. These include fuatasi canoe racers, the teuila flower, manumea bird, kava bowl, fly swatter and the national crest of Samoa.
The Samoa tala notes are available in six denominations and are all the same size (72mm x 140mm) The 2 tala is blue and yellow in colour and features a portrait of the Samoan head of state as well as a family in a Samoan house. 5 tala is red and pink in colour and features Samaon fale and trees in a bay, as well as Villa Valima which is a place of cultural significance. The 10 tala is blue and green in colour and featues the Manu Samoa 7's rugby union team and a group of children on the other side. The 20 tala is yellow and orange in colour and features the Sopo'aga Waterfall and Samoan pigeon. The 50 tala is purple and blue coloured and pictures the Government of Samoa office building, and the Central Bank of Samoa. The 100 tala is green and yellow and features a portrait of the late Maleitoa Tanumafili and the Cathedral of Apia.
The exchange rate is approximately ST$1.90 = AUD$1. Credit cards are widely accepted throughout major resorts, department stores and restaurants however it is recommended to have some cash on you while out and about.