In movies, it’s common to see bank heist scenes where the thief demands a certain sum – often a million dollars – and the teller starts to empty drawers full of cash into a bag. But how would either of them know when the thief’s request has been fulfilled? Can you visualize what a million dollars looks like?
How many bills would it take to equal $1 million?
It would take 50,000 $20 bills to reach the one million mark, or 10,000 $100 bills. Stuffing $20 bills into a sack wouldn’t add up to a million dollars.
How much space would $1 million take up?
Imagine a packet of 100 $100 bills – about half an inch high. Arrange 10 of those packets flat on the ground and stack another nine layers on top and then you’ll have $1 million. The pile would be approximately a foot wide by a foot deep and over four inches high. Using $20 bills, a million dollar pile would be five times bigger.
How much would $1 million weigh?
It depends on the number of bills, but even paper money gets heavy in large quantities. A lone thief would need at least one cohort to carry a bag containing $1 million in $20 bills because it would weigh about 110 pounds.
Next time you see a heist scene in a movie, try to imagine how much cash those fictional thieves are actually getting away with.