Australia Post offers circulating A to Z series dollar coins
- Published: Oct 14, 2019, 10 AM
Australians can soon use Vegemite and didgeridoos to make change.
A new series of circulating commemorative dollar coins — one for each letter of the alphabet — highlight various aspects of Australian culture and cuisine, including the aforementioned items (the yeasty sandwich spread representing V, and the indigenous musical instrument for D).
The coins are being exclusively distributed through Australia Post, itself the subject of the first coin in the series, for A.
Six coins released so far
Six coins, the A for Australia Post, F for footy, I for Iced VoVo, M for meat pie, S for Surf Life Saving and X for the tiny township of Xantippe, were issued Sept. 30 to kick off the program.
The Iced VoVo is a popular branded snack, a wheat flour biscuit topped with a strip of pink fondant on either side of a strip of raspberry jam and sprinkled with coconut.
“For over 110 years, Arnott’s iced vovo has been a favourite treat in homes and offices across Australia,” according to Australia Post. “A prominent feature in Australiana merchandise, this humble pink-iced bickle is a treasured national icon.”
New coins will then be released each Monday until Oct. 21, 2019, to complete the full set of 26, all the way up to Z for Zooper Dooper (an ice pop.) Between four and seven coins are due for release weekly, Australia Post confirmed.
The 26-coin program is being called the Great Aussie Coin Hunt
“Designed to be fun for all ages, the Great Aussie Coin Hunt creates an iconic reflection of Aussie life through an appealing A-Z set of specially themed $1 coins,” according to Australia Post.
Great Australian Coin Hunt
The coins are available at any one of the 3,600 participating Post Offices in Australia. Collectors are required to make a purchase to receive the collectible dollar coins in their change.
By collecting the entire set of 26, hunt enthusiasts will secure their own special slice of Australian history, according to Australia Post Executive General Manager Consumer and Community, Nicole Sheffield.
“We want everyone to get involved in the Great Aussie Coin Hunt,” she said. “Not only will it be really exciting to hunt for all the coins and build an amazing collection, but each and every coin opens up the opportunity for wonderful conversations about quintessential Australian life.”
From summers spent swinging on a Hills Hoist to loading up the esky (portable cooler) for a BBQ and cooling off with a Zooper Dooper, the coins celebrate iconic Australiana and will spark fond memories for many Aussies.
The coins feature everything from favorite foods, to the boomerang and didgeridoo, to favorite sports like cricket and footy, to the iconic Neighbours television show, and some of the nation’s most popular and unique wildlife — the kangaroo, platypus and quokka.
The Great Aussie Coin Hunt road trip also began on Sept. 30, with two vans taking the event to communities across the country during October — one traveling the east coast and one heading west.
The vans will bring local communities together to have some fun while learning more about why each Aussie icon was chosen for presentation on the collectable coins, and celebrate a shared sense of nostalgia and pride, according to Australia Post.
Collector reactions mixed
The release of the coins has received mixed criticism and vast excitement among the numismatic collector community in Australia.
Collectors are sharing tips of locations with coins for sale — or complaints about locations where coins are already sold out or allegedly sold in contradiction to Great Australian Coin Hunt directives — through collector groups on Facebook like “Australian Coins, Banknotes, Collectables – Buy-Swap-Sell.”
Collectors have experienced different availabilities, quantity limits and more, depending on region and other factors.
A folder for the coins is available for $9, according to Australia Post, and several collectors report being told that complete sets will be available after October for $50.
Australia Post is issuing information about the hunt and coin swaps periodically through social media. For more information about The Great Aussie Coin Hunt visit the dedicated website.
Some of the items alphabetically featured may be unfamiliar to those outside of Australia.
Consider a lamington.
According to Australia Post, “This iconic Aussie snack is the source of much delicious debate — should it have cream? What about jam? Does it count if it’s raspberry sponge? No matter your preference, lamingtons are a national treasure.”
A yowie (on the coin for Y) is described as a tall hairy, human-like creature that is supposed to live in the Bush.
Other items are more understandable.
The complete list is shown below:
A: Australia Post
E: esky (portable cooler)
H: Hills Hoist
I: Iced VoVo
J: Jackaroo & Jillaroo
M: meat pie
N: Neighbours (TV show)
R: Royal Flying Doctor
S: Surf Life Saving
T: thongs (flip-flops)
U: ute (utility vehicle)
W: Weet-Bix (cereal)
Y: yowie (mythical creature)
Z: Zooper Dooper (ice pop)
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