Winnipeggers were lining up outside the Royal Canadian Mint on Thursday to get their hands on the new Canadian currency bearing the effigy of King Charles III.
The king’s image replaces Queen Elizabeth II, who died on Sept. 8, 2022. The King’s profile faces left, opposite the direction of his late mother on the coin. The description surrounding the King’s effigy is also different, changing from ‘Regina,’ meaning ‘Queen’ in Latin, to ‘Rex,’ meaning ‘King.’
A line up of coin collectors stretched around the Mint Thursday morning, waiting for the doors to open for a coin exchange. Those who brought $3.40 to the Mint were able to receive a package containing a toonie, a loonie, quarter, dime and nickel.
A set of 2023 circulation Canadian coins featuring the effigy of King Charles III. Dec. 12, 2023. (Ted Raymond/CTV News Ottawa)
Donna Foster was among the Manitobans at the exchange. She said it was important for her to be among the first to get her hands on the coins.
“I’ve been coming to all the coin exchanges for a few years now,” said Foster. “My sister started my son off when he was young collecting coins, so I just decided to carry on the tradition of some excitement being among the first to have these coins.”
Gregory Puhacz was also at the Mint, grabbing a pack for a family member.
“I have a great-niece that’s two years old,” he said. “I’ll put them away for her and there’ll be no marks on him. So they’ll have more value when she gets to university.”
The Mint said a small number of King Charles III coins have already started circulating in Canada. Coins with Queen Elizabeth on them are still considered legal tender.
-With files from The Canadian Press and CTV’s Sissi De Flaviis
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