The yuan took the form of a copper coin with a hole through the center, similar to the fen. One yuan was worth 5 fen, 20 yuan were worth 1 ch'ao or 1 tael, and 200 yuan were worth 1 ch'ien. If transported to Faerûn circa 1357 DR, 1 yuan would be treated as worth 1 copper piece, though its actual value would be 5 copper pieces.
Thanks to their holes, collections of fens and yuans were threaded on strings in amounts of 50–100, which was convenient for counting and carrying them. These cash strings could be worn on the wrist and tucked inside the sleeve.