If you don't know about or understand exchange rates, it's time to get educated on what they are and how they affect your travel and the spending power of your money.
Exchange rates are the rate in which your US dollars trade for another country's currency.
You want to get the best value possible for your money, so that means traveling to countries where the exchange rate for the dollar is equal to or less than the value of the dollar in that country. You also need to consider the cost of living and exchange rate fees, but we'll get into those on other pages.
But if you don't take a serious look at all of these factors, you can lose a lot of money, which is not what we want you to do. This site is about improving your quality of life, not making it harder.
Here is a couple of quick examples of currency exchange using our real life experiences:
On our first trip to London in 2015, the British Pound was trading very strong to the US Dollar. We spent $1.52 for every £1. So we were losing 50% of our money. Also, cost of living in London is expensive.
In 2016, we went to Morocco where the US Dollar was strong to the Moroccan Dirham. We gained 10 MAD for every $1 we exchanged. Instead of losing money, we gained a lot of spending power due to the better exchange rate and lower cost of living.
The difference in these two examples is that we spent around $1708 for about two and a half weeks in London with a house sit covering rent and $1729 for a month in Morocco including rent. We lost $569.33 of the $1708 to currency exchange rates in London.
See why you want to take exchange rates into consideration when deciding where to travel?
Try it out for yourself in the Currency Exchange Rate Converter below.
Currency Exchange Apps
We recommend installing currency exchange rate apps onto both your phones and computers.
They are very helpful in helping decide what you're going to spend before getting to the country, as well as being useful when out shopping and you don't know the exchange rates yet.
And you don't want to ask the merchant what the exchange rates are. They will either shrug because they don't know or immediately will jack the price because you didn't know any better.
Our favorite currency exchange rate app is the XE currency app.