We exchanged money through an acquaintance. As he explained, 2550 soum to the dollar is the official rate. The safe rate (he goes to an apartment of a friend he trusts) is 3800 – $1. On the street you could get 4000 – $1, but it is not safe.
We had to give him new $100 and $20s. The $20s had to be crisp and not after 2003.
Also interesting – he speaks only Russian and English. He’s born and raised in Tashkent, and when he was in school (though he seems like he would have been in school after 1991) they were teaching in Russian. He knows enough Uzbek for the market. Now, he says, more Uzbekis know Uzbek, though everyone in the cities still knows Russian.