Where to Get Quarters – Especially During a Coin Shortage
Whether you need to do laundry or want to play a fun drinking game, it’s essential to know where to get quarters. Lately, finding quarters has become harder than usual, thanks to a coin shortage in the U.S.
According to BusinessInsider.com, it’s not an actual shortage but a circulation problem. Since the coronavirus pandemic began, we’ve seen a disruption in the availability of quarters, nickels, dimes, and pennies.
The U.S. Mint has been operating at full production capacity, but a task force has determined the currency is sitting dormant. The lack of circulation of coins means we’re not spending them – they’re at home, in our change jars and cup holders in the car, rather than going into store tills and vending machines.
With coins sitting at home, rather than being spent, it can be difficult to find where to get quarters for laundry near me when you need them. Let’s cover where to get quarters during quarantine or while there’s a coin shortage.
Where to Get Quarters Near Me
First, it’s essential to figure out if you need an entire roll of quarters or just a few. As a reminder, a roll of quarters has 40 quarters in it and is worth $10.
If you’re trying to figure out where can I get a roll of quarters, the bank is your best option.
Your local bank or Credit Unions
If you need an entire roll of quarters, the bank is your best bet. However, even banks have been hit by the coin shortage, so these are they easiest way to ensure that you can get them:
- Call ahead to see if you have to be a member. Some banks will only provide coins to account holders, so make sure that you either visit your bank or that they will work with a non-member. Another idea is to open a free savings, checking account, or bank account if they insist that you be a member to get coins.
- Ask them to order quarters for you. If the bank is out of quarters, you can ask them to order some quarter rolls for you. While it can take a couple of weeks, if you’re not in a hurry, it can be the best way to get them. My dad does this all the time to look for specific quarters to complete his collection.
When you visit the bank, you can ask the teller to exchange a $10 bill for a roll. Or, you can make a withdraw and ask for it in rolls of quarters. While they might not be able to give you multiple rolls of quarters, chances are you’ll be able to grab a couple.
Where Can I Get Quarters Besides a Bank?
If you’re wondering where to get quarters on a Sunday when the bank is closed, here are some other great options:
If you’re only looking for a handful of quarters, an easy way to get them at a grocery store is to make a small purchase and ask the cashier for quarters when the cash register is open.
Often, cashiers cannot open the till without a purchase being made, so it’s a great time to grab a pack of gum or something cheap from the checkout line to purchase.
If you want to know where can I get a $10 roll of quarters, you’re better off trying your luck at the customer service desk or customer service counter. Here, they can exchange a $10 bill for a roll of quarters. Make sure to ask nicely – you aren’t making a purchase, so a little honey will get your further than vinegar in this situation.
Arcades are an easy place to get quarters because they always have a lot of change machines. Just make sure that they’re giving you quarters back and not giving you tokens specific to the arcade – otherwise, you might be stuck playing a bunch of games instead of doing your a load of laundry.
Arcades are a good option for quarters because the coin machines will often take almost any denomination of bills, which is excellent if you need a lot.
Again, laundromats often have change machines so that customers can use the appliances. Make sure that the laundromat isn’t a new, high-tech one that uses card readers instead of taking quarters in their laundry machines.
Repurchase Coins from Your Landlord
If you rent and your units have a coin-operated washer and dryer, why not ask the landlord to buy back a lot of quarters from the machines? Not only are you getting quarters, but you’re relieving your landlord of some of the hassle of collecting and taking quarters into the bank to deposit. It’s a win-win for everyone!
Vending machines always have quarters and can be a good place to snag a small handful of quarters. However, it can also be risky since you might have to purchase an item to get change, which is fine if you had a craving for Doritos anyway, but not great if you don’t want to spend the extra money.
This method is most likely to work on older vending machines or soda machines that don’t just spit the dollar back out. To see if you can get your dollar bill exchanged for quarters, insert it into the machine and push the change button. At this point, the vending machine will either dispense the entire amount in change or make you purchase something. Either way, you’ll end up with more quarters than you started with, and possibly some snacks as well.
Car washes are generally coin-operated, so chances are high there’ll be a change machine on the premises. Check older car washes that don’t accept credit cards as their primary source of payment.
Local Convenience Stores, Gas Stations, and Pharmacies
Most cashiers can’t open the till without a purchase, so chances are you’ll have to make a small purchase at a convenience store or gas station and then ask for the change in quarters.
Luckily, both are full of small items to purchase that won’t be too expensive. Some things to buy include:
- Gum (one of the smaller/cheaper packs)
- A single piece of fruit
- Snack bar
- Fountain drink
- Individual bags of chips or pretzels
- A small packet of tissues
- A small bottle of water
- A candy bar
- Other cheap groceries
Fast Food Establishments
With fast-food restaurants, you can ask to trade a bill for coins when the drawer is open after making your purchase. Or, pay with a larger bill and ask for a couple of dollars in quarters. This method applies to any big box store as well, since they have a lot of traffic as well. Both of these locations have a lot of people coming through, so it makes it one of the best places to get quarters.
If you can find an old-school bowling alley around town, they’re more likely to have change machines around. Newer bowling alleys will most likely only take cards if they have an arcade section inside.
Public Transit Stations
Bus drivers can’t give change, so exact change is recommended when using the bus. This is a long shot, but some older stations could potentially have change machines. Most have probably switched over to taking a debit card or credit card for ticket purchases. However, it’s worth a look if you’re in the area anyway.
Waitresses, Waiters, and Street Performers
If you’re out to dinner, you can ask your waiter or waitress to exchange your dollar bills for coins. They sometimes receive coins as tips, so they’re likely to be glad to hand them off in exchange for bills.
If you’re in the city, it’s easy to find street performers downtown. They often have lots of change in their hats or guitar cases, and you can ask to exchange bills for coins. Don’t forget to tip them as well for helping you out!
Ask a Friend
Asking a friend if they have any quarters might be the closest and most straightforward option. If you have a friend with a giant change jar or stuffed piggy bank, ask if you can exchange bills for quarters next time you’re hanging out at their house.
Bonus Option: Order them Online
Ordering quarters online will be a final effort to try if you’re desperate when all others have been exhausted. You can order quarters directly from the U.S. Mint, but you’re looking at additional wait time to get them. Also, this option is more for collectors who are looking for specific coins to add to their collection.
A final – and horrible – option is to order them from Amazon or eBay. These quarters are uncirculated and will cost you more than the mere $10 they’re worth; plus, you’ll have to pay for shipping. I highly recommend not going this route.
Have too many other coins and need to desparately cash them in? Find out where I change my coins to cash – for free!
Now that you know where to get quarters, let me know if you have any luck with finding them elsewhere in the comments below!
A forty-ish web designer/developer by day, a budget & financial fanatic by night. I’m a mom, wife, avid reader, and DIY enthusiast who’s tracking our journey to debt freedom. Read More