Time to talk business!!! Then why is this listed in the “Active Lifestyle” Section?  Well, Mrs. Zakski and I are about to embark on our honeymoon.  You better believe we are going to be very “active” … with lots of walking, hiking, swimming, dancing, and adventure haha.  Our trip is going to take us to a few different countries all over Europe.  Stay tuned to the site and socials because I will be doing a post from each location and so will she.

 So, what does this have to do with understanding currency exchange? Lots, a lot of money can be saved, or lost based on knowing or not knowing a few key pieces of information.  That’s what todays blog is all about, knowing a couple of simple yet important facts that will keep you confident about what is going on with your money when you are in a different country.

Should I use my Credit Card, or should I get money for my trip?

Both have some positives and negatives in my mind. We came to the decision that we are going to do a bit of both for the various reasons below.

Using a credit card:

Positives

-You don’t have to worry about carrying cash and getting it mixed up or lost

-Protection from fraud or if lost

Similar and in some cases better exchange rate than exchanging cash at the bank

Many cards offer benefits such as travel, rental car, and health insurance (can still be taken advantage of even if you decide not to use it for expenditures)

Negatives

Harder to tip or make quick purchases with individuals

If lost, it will take the credit card company a couple of days to get you a new one (although they usually can quickly)

Not always excepted depending on where you are travelling or by smaller vendors

Harder to Haggle and bargain without some tangible coin

Using Cash is pretty much the same list just reverse but ill show it anyway.

PRO’S

You can tip easily and purchase things on the fly

– You can Haggle, flash some cash and get a deal

– Accepted everywhere that money exists… if it’s the right currency

– Can get you out of a pinch if you lose everything but keep a stash somewhere like your hotel room safe.

CON’S

There is no calling the Bank and having them reimbursing you if your robbed or loose all your cash.

– The pain of having to go to the bank and pay to exchange money.

– Not all banks carry all currencies so you may need to find a currency exchange store.  Most malls have these.

– Stick em up!!!! Being seen with a lot of cash may make you an even bigger target for crime

One other little note and something to be aware of is that when you “google” the exchange rate of two currencies the number that you get will not likely be the amount you pay to exchange the money.  Banks and credit cards charge a premium to make money. This varies from institution to institution, but you can usually expect to pay a few cents more that what google says (The market value of the currencies).  At the time of writing this for example, there was a difference of 4 cents between what google said and the actual amount the bank wanted to charge me to exchange CAD and USD.

 There is a lot more to it but hopefully this will help clear up a few pre-vacation questions before your next trip.  As always thanks for reading and I hope you will come back to follow our EuroTrip!  Like and subscribe to our socials at the top right of the page to get some video coverage haha.

6 comments
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