15 places to break a $100 bill

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Looking for where to exchange large bills for small? You are on the right page.

When you have a $100 bill and need smaller denominations like twenties, tens, fives, or singles, there are several options available. Some smaller retailers might not accept larger bills, but you can easily exchange your $100 bill at various places:

  • Banks and Credit Unions: Most banks and credit unions will break a $100 bill into smaller denominations for you. You may need to have an account with them, but some branches provide this service to non-customers as well.
  • Grocery Stores: Many grocery stores offer cashback options when making a purchase using a $100 bill. They can provide change in smaller bills along with your groceries.
  • Big Box Retailers: Stores like Walmart, Target, or similar large retailers usually have cashiers equipped to break larger bills into smaller ones during a purchase.
  • Post Offices: Some post offices provide currency exchange services, allowing you to get smaller bills in exchange for a $100 note.

However, it’s important to note that in some instances, these establishments might require you to make a purchase or have certain conditions for breaking the $100 bill into smaller denominations. By utilizing these various options, you can easily exchange your $100 bill and avoid being stuck with a large denomination that smaller retailers might not accept.

Where to break a $100 bill

There are plenty of options for breaking large dollar bills into smaller ones like twenties, tens, fives, and singles.

1. Banks and credit unions

The process of getting change for larger bills at banks or credit unions is usually straightforward. Banks are convenient places where you can easily exchange larger bills for smaller ones without having to make a purchase or pay fees.

If you’re already a member of a bank or credit union, you can simply visit your local branch and request to exchange your $100 bill for smaller denominations. However, even if you don’t have an account with that particular bank, many branches will still help you break your larger bills into smaller ones.

It’s worth noting that in some cases, especially if you’re not a customer, the bank might ask for identification like a driver’s license. It’s a good idea to carry some form of identification with you just in case they request it when you go to exchange your money.

2. Your local grocery store

If there’s a nearby grocery store, you might be able to exchange a large bill for smaller ones there. Sometimes, cashiers might not have enough change, especially at the start of their shift. To ensure they can accommodate your request, it’s a good idea to inquire at the customer service counter or speak to a manager.

They might be able to provide you with smaller bills without requiring you to buy anything. However, if a purchase is necessary, opt for a low-cost item like a pack of gum and proceed to the checkout counter.

Before starting the transaction, ask the cashier if they can break your large bill to ensure a smooth process.

3. Walmart stores

Walmart stores can be a convenient option for getting change for a $100 bill. One way is to make a purchase and receive change from the cashier. Alternatively, if there’s a self-checkout machine available, you can use that as well. Many of Walmart’s self-checkout machines are programmed to accept $100 bills.

Additionally, you might want to inquire at the customer service counter. They often have more cash available than individual cashiers and may be able to assist you with breaking the $100 bill into smaller denominations.

4. Target stores

Target stores can be convenient when you need to exchange larger bills for smaller ones. You have a couple of options: you can make a purchase and receive change in smaller denominations, or you can head to the customer service desk for assistance.

The employees at Target are known for being helpful, so you can expect prompt and efficient service when requesting change. Whether through a purchase or by seeking assistance from the customer service desk, you’ll likely obtain your change quickly and without much hassle.

5. Restaurants

Restaurants often handle a lot of cash transactions, particularly those that focus on takeout or casual dining experiences.

If you need to break a $100 bill, nearby restaurants might be open to helping you, particularly towards the end of their busy lunch or dinner periods when they’ve accumulated more cash.

Keep in mind that some places might request you to make a purchase before providing change, while others may be happy to exchange your large bills without requiring a purchase.

6. Bars

Bars often handle a lot of cash transactions. If you have a $100 bill and need smaller denominations, like $20s or $10s, the bartender or manager at the bar might assist you.

However, in some cases, the staff might ask you to buy something, like a drink, before they give you a change for your larger bill. This is because they want to ensure sales are made before providing change for larger bills.

7. Pawn shops

Pawn shops deal with significant amounts of cash and can accommodate larger bills when other businesses might not. Moreover, when you visit a pawn shop, you might discover appealing deals that are hard to resist.

8. Laundromats

In certain cases, laundromats operate without any staff present, but in other places, there might be an employee or attendant available who can help you get change. Since laundromats typically involve smaller transactions, they often keep enough change on hand to assist customers.

It’s advisable to look for signs outside the laundromat that specifically mention whether they provide change. This step is crucial to avoid wasting your time if the particular establishment doesn’t offer change services. Checking for these signs can save you from inconvenience.

9. Gas stations

Gas stations and convenience stores often process many transactions and can typically provide change for larger bills. Smaller stores might have a limit, usually indicated by posted signs, where they won’t break bills larger than $20. However, larger stores usually assist in making change, especially if you buy something small.

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10. Casinos

If there’s a casino close by, you’re fortunate because they typically have machines that exchange bills, making it easy for you to break your $100 bill. These machines can turn your $100 bill into smaller denominations, like twenties, fifties, or tens.

Alternatively, you can approach the tellers at the casino and ask them to exchange your bill for smaller ones. Although they might request identification for the transaction, most casinos are equipped to help you with this service.

11. Hotels

Hotels commonly handle cash transactions and usually keep smaller bills on hand for change. Whether you’re staying as a guest or visiting, the front desk is generally open to exchanging your $100 bill for smaller denominations if you ask politely.

However, if they’re unable to assist, they might suggest another nearby location where you can get your bill broken into smaller ones.

12. Home Depot

Home Depot typically handles numerous cash transactions, making it likely they can break your $100 bill. If you’re making a purchase, you can inquire with the cashier before finalizing your payment.

If you’re not buying anything, heading directly to the customer service desk is a good option. They manage various transactions and are usually equipped to provide change. Simply ask, and they’re likely to assist you.

13. Spas and salons

Spas, nail salons, and hair salons often keep cash available for transactions. They are usually willing to exchange large bills for customers, especially when customers intend to leave a cash tip.

Additionally, you can approach an employee at these establishments and ask for change; they might have smaller bills available from tips they’ve received during their workday. This can be convenient if you need smaller denominations for your payment or tipping purposes.

14. Tattoo and Piercing Shops

In certain tattoo and piercing shops, they solely accept cash payments, and the employees often get tips in cash during their work hours. If you have a big bill and need smaller change, you might be able to ask either the receptionist or one of the employees if they can assist you with exchanging your larger bill for smaller ones.

15. United States Post Office (USPS)

The United States Post Office (USPS) is not only about sending mail and packages; many of their branches also provide currency exchange services. This means that if you have a $100 bill and want smaller denominations like $50s or $20s, you can easily visit a USPS location and request this exchange at the counter.

At the post office, you can directly approach the counter staff and ask to exchange your $100 bill for smaller bills like $50s or $20s. This can be helpful if you need smaller denominations for day-to-day transactions or if you prefer carrying less cash with you.

One advantage of using USPS for this purpose is that they usually have an ample supply of smaller bills available. Since people often visit post offices for various services like buying stamps or money orders, USPS branches tend to have smaller denominations readily accessible compared to other places.

However, it’s essential to consider that USPS operating hours might be limited compared to some other options. They usually follow regular business hours and may not stay open late at night or on weekends.

Tips for breaking $100 bills

Breaking a $100 bill can be tough because many stores prefer smaller bills for change. But, there are ways to make it easier:

  • Be polite and choose the right time: Ask nicely when the store isn’t busy, like early mornings or weekdays. This increases your chance of success, as stores are more likely to have enough change.
  • Look ready to buy: Dress neatly and look like you’re ready to make a purchase. This helps the cashier trust that you’re a genuine customer, not just swapping big bills without buying anything.
  • Try your bank or credit union: They’re more likely to help you break the bill, as they have more cash available. Banks might also offer extra services like coin exchange or check cashing.

Remember, not every store might be able to break your $100 bill. But by being polite, looking prepared to buy, and trying your bank, you can improve your chances. So, don’t stress about big bills – stay positive and prepared, and you’ll break that $100 bill in no time!

Places that might not accept $100 bills

Here’s a more detailed breakdown of places that might not accept $100 bills and why:

  • Small Businesses: Many small businesses may have limited cash reserves and might display signs indicating their inability to provide change for larger bills. This includes local shops, convenience stores, and smaller eateries.
  • Fast Food and Smaller Restaurants: Often, fast-food joints and smaller restaurants may not have the necessary cash flow to break larger bills. They may prefer smaller denominations for ease of transactions.
  • Pay-Per-Use Places: Locations where you pay for services or items individually, such as vending machines or places where you buy a drink each time you need one, might not readily accept $100 bills. These places typically deal with smaller transactions.
  • Government Offices: Establishments like the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) and post offices usually prioritize specific transactions and might not have the capacity to break larger bills unless you’re conducting a related transaction.
  • Teller Services: Even if these establishments have tellers, they often follow strict guidelines on the type and amount of cash transactions they can handle. They might request a purchase before breaking a large bill due to these regulations.

Breaking a $100 bill can sometimes pose challenges, especially at these locations. It’s helpful to be aware of these situations and seek out businesses or places that can accommodate your need for change, ensuring a smoother transaction.

The bottom line

Even though some locations may not accept $100 bills, there are various options available for exchanging them into smaller denominations. You can visit banks, grocery stores, retail shops, or even the post office to exchange your $100 bills conveniently.

By following this guide, you can easily convert $100 bills (referred to as “Benjamins”) into smaller bills without much hassle. Remember to approach the exchange politely, consider visiting during less busy times, and be prepared to purchase the exchange. Adhering to these tips will ensure a smooth and successful transaction every time you need to break a large bill.