Two things...
Reunion - Scene of the Euro’s World Debut
The First Coins in the Name of Reunion

Reunion - Scene of the Euro’s World Debut

The common side of the 1 Euro coin.
The common side of the 1 Euro coin.

   The 1st of January 2002 saw the Euro coins and notes become official legal tender not only in the 12 initial EU-member Eurozone countries but also in a number of smaller nations, dependencies and regions. Amongst these was Reunion.
   Prior to the Euro, the official legal tender of Reunion had been the French Franc, so with E-day this had to change. Reunion is always 4 hours ahead of UTC (= GMT, = London’s time in the winter) at New Year, with its location being to the east of the island of Madagascar. Consequently Reunion was the first place in the Eurozone into E-day, hence the very first place in the world in which the Euro coins and notes were legal tender.
   New Euro coins issued in Reunion are of the French series and new notes issued there are with the French serial number prefix “U”, but of course all the new Euro coins and notes are legal tender in Reunion.
   Not far behind Reunion was another French possession near to Africa, the island of Mayotte. This is one of the four main islands of the Comoros, but it is administered separately to the other three main islands as they opted for independence from France, commencing 31st December 1975. Mayotte is to the north-west of Madagascar and subsequently in a different time zone to Reunion.
   The other places beyond mainland Europe that are using the Euro coins and notes as legal tender are French Guyana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, St Pierre-et-Miquelon which are all in or around the Americas and linked to France; the Azores and Madeira (both Portuguese) and the Canaries and the Balearics (both Spanish). As with Reunion and with Mayotte, none of these places will have their own particular Euro coin designs or notes.

A very informative site on the technicalities of the Euro coins and papermoney can be found at:-

Details of the use the Euro as legal tender in other parts of the world are given at:-

The First Coins in the Name of Reunion

The Reunion 1 Franc 1896
Reunion 1 Franc 1896 (Image from Gérard Delage)

    The first coins in the name of Reunion were of 1896, the series comprised two types - a 50 Centimes and a 1 Franc, each with quite similar designs. Before this issue, some coins of France were used as money, earlier than that there was widespread use of Austrian 20 Kreuzer coins. More details of those earlier coinages can be found (in French language) at .

Reunion Tokens Page

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This page new with "Reunion - Scene of the Euro’s World Debut" at January 2002.
Added section - The First Coins in the Name of Reunion at august 2005