Paying with Plastic: Canada Introduces Polymer $100 Bill

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Bank of Canada

One small step for Canada, one giant leap toward worry-free laundry.

For the first time ever, Bank of Canada will release the new $100 bill on Monday — in plastic. It’s reported to be almost impossible to rip (ever lost a dollar in the washing machine?) and the dollar is said to be nearly counterfeit-proof thanks to holographic elements and security features.

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The bill will continue to showcase Sir Robert Borden, a former prime minister, on the front while the back “celebrates Canada’s contributions to innovation in the field of medicine.” (Something, I’m sure, some Americans can attest to.)

It’s not the only bill that’s getting the makeover: the $50 bill will follow in March, with the $20, $10 and $5 bill finally coming in 2013. For Canadians, it’s time to break out the plastic.

Canada isn’t only the country to ditch the paper: several countries have switched their currencies over to the new material. Australia was the first country to move their currency to plastic in the 1980s.

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Erica Ho is a reporter at TIME. Find her on Twitter at @ericamho and Google+. You can also continue the discussion on TIME’s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME.

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