One frustrating thing about travelling in Asia is the low, low ATM withdrawal limits. You can only take out the equivalent of maybe $100-200 at a time, and you’ll be charged as much as $8 or so for the privilege of doing so.
One thing I never got tired of, though, was exchanging New Zealand money for local currency. Handing over a couple of bills and getting back many, many more was always a thrill.
Alas, those days are over. We’re now in Europe, where our dollar is pretty darn weak, and everything is a lot more expensive. It’s quite depressing, actually.
That means pinching pennies, lots of supermarket stops, and looking for deals wherever possible, be it discounts on tickets for the London Eye or tickets to Disneyland Paris.
The MasterCard I’m using (a post on how I’m managing our money while travelling is in the works) lets me store money in different currency ‘wallets’ and lock in exchange rates in the process. This didn’t matter in Asia, because none of the currencies in the countries we visited were supported, but the pound, euro, and US dollar are supported. So I’ve started keeping an eye on currency fluctuations, getting daily updates from XE.com, in order to take advantage of rates when they’re good. Annoyingly, they’ve been quite volatile of late, and the trends don’t look promising overall.
In the meantime, I’ll have to try not to develop too much of an inferiority complex about the New Zealand dollar.
I’ve still got a few posts to come about Asia, so keep an eye out for ‘em. Happy weekends, all!