Hold the Cash
One alternative form of paper money in New Zealand is the local exchange trading system (LETS) of green dollars, which is a particularly useful means of trade in smaller towns. Swiss national and former banker Christoph Hensch, now living in Christchurch, says alternative currencies do not try to replace cash. Rather, they offer a way “for people to share and redeem value they have in the community.” Hensch says the currencies are most useful in geographical areas or social sectors where money doesn’t flow sufficiently, citing for example Golden Bay, which is so remote that it sometimes nearly functions as its own economy. According to an online source, as of the mid 1990s there were approximately 70 “Green Dollar Systems” in New Zealand.