Source: The European Central Bank

Launching the Europa series


The Europa series

The new banknotes are called the Europa series because two of their security features contain a portrait of Europa – a figure from Greek mythology and the origin of the name of our continent.

Same denominations

The new banknotes are to be introduced gradually over several years, in ascending order, so the €5 will be followed by the €10, then the €20 etc. The denominations remain unchanged: €5, €10, €20, €50, €100, €200 and €500.

Timing of issuance

The exact timing of the issuance of the remaining denominations will be determined and communicated to the public and cash handlers at a later stage.

Banknote equipment manufacturers

Banknote equipment manufacturers have been involved in the development of the Europa series to allow them to prepare for the introduction of the new banknotes.

Advanced security features

The new series includes new and enhanced security features which will offer better protection against counterfeiting.

Design evolution

The new banknotes represent an evolution. They will still feature the “ages and styles” design of the first series and show the same dominant colours, but have been slightly modified to accommodate the enhanced security features. This also makes them easy to distinguish from the first series. An independent banknote designer based in Berlin, Reinhold Gerstetter, was selected to refresh the design of the notes.

Designs for the visually impaired

As with the first series of banknotes, visually impaired users were consulted during the design phase of the second series, and their requirements were included in the final designs.

The new €10 banknote

The €5 banknote was the first denomination of the Europa series. The second one will be the €10, to be introduced as of 23 September 2014. As both denominations change hands frequently, they have been given a coating to make them more durable. This means that the banknotes will need to be replaced less frequently, thereby reducing the cost and the impact on the environment.

Parallel circulation of old and new banknotes

When the new €5 was issued, the first series €5 continued to be issued as well for several months in order to use up remaining stocks. The same will happen for the new €10 and the higher denominations. In any case, for each denomination both series will continue to circulate in parallel as legal tender.

Banknotes of the first series will always retain their value

The date when the first series of euro banknotes ceases to be legal tender will be announced well in advance. However, the banknotes of the first series will always retain their value: they can be exchanged for an unlimited period of time at the Eurosystem NCBs.

Key dates

  • 8 November 2012: The ECB announces the introduction of a new series of euro banknotes, starting with the €5 banknote, and reveals three of the security features.
  • 10 January 2013: The €5 banknote of the Europa series is unveiled.
  • 2 May 2013: The new €5 banknote is introduced in all the euro area countries.
  • 13 January 2014: The €10 banknote of the Europa series is unveiled.
  • 23 September 2014: The new €10 banknote is introduced in all the euro area countries.

Security features of the new €5 banknote

Security features of the new €10 banknote