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Author: svncontinents

Joined: 11/25/2011
Posts: 230
Trips Taken: 12
Traveler Since: 2007

August 09, 2012

 As one more afterthought, in a declining environment, such as is opined to exist now regarding the Euro vs. the dollar, it may not necessarily be a good move to purchase and hold.  For example, as we opined, we believe based on far more informed opinions than ours, that the Euro will decline considerably by year's end, and perhaps further, based on what transpires, so we're holding off additional Euro purchases since we will not have to use Euros for several months. 

 

As the markets are now open, the Euro is now $1.23 and falling.  So, you ATM users, you're winning right now.  

Author: singsling

Joined: 6/23/2010
Posts: 217
Trips Taken: 11
Traveler Since: 1995

August 09, 2012

I agree with the above post from nanaandpapa.  Don't sweat the small stuff!  A penny here and there, among the tens of thousands we spend on our trips is nothing.  Yes, we use credit cards for meals when we can.  But, the first thing we do at the airport (I know, the lowest rate) is buy about 50 dollars of local currency.  Depending on how long we are staying in that country, we may or may not have to  buy more local currency.  If we do, we figure what we will need it for-- souvenirs we are going to buy, where we might eat, or laundry to get done.  Once we determine about how much we need, we use an ATM to get cash.  Used to be river ships had local currency to change $50 per day per person. Sometimes we are so tired we just eat in the hotel or a very nearby restaurant.  At the hotel we just charge to the room; we haven't had any souvenir shop not accept credit cards; sometimes I use my debit card as a Credit as my credit union instructed.  But only one restaurant didn't accept a US credit card.  The PD later told us it was because the cashier didn't know how to change the setting by pressing a button to swipe our US card. 

If we buy too little and have a few (sometimes up to $50 US equiv. )  of local currency, left over, I buy large local chocolate bars to give with my souvenirs or freeze when I get back.  I figure if I can afford 25,000 bucks for a trip, I won't worry about having a few bucks of a local currency left over, I'll spend it somehow.  We spend it all there as much as possible, because of  health reasons we never know if we are going to return to that country/area to use the money again.   We are still booked, so guess we are healthy this year!!

I'm not a "finance" person, but my Mom taught me how to squeeze a penny, and I do, believe me.  But, as I said, what's a few cents of fees for using ATM's or transaction fees for using a card, when I've spent multi thousands on a trip.  My fees for transactions with my bank were mostly less than $10.  Be wise, but be happy.

 

Author: svncontinents

Joined: 11/25/2011
Posts: 230
Trips Taken: 12
Traveler Since: 2007

August 09, 2012

Centaur, thank you for your kind words.  As we tend to agree, we indeed hope that we can meet on some future trip.  It would be interesting. Based on your post, it does appear that you travel in some circles outside our means, and we envy you for it.  However, based on what you post, it does appear that your understanding of currency rates is far better than most who post here, which we appreciate.  Most of the posters here didn't and probably some still don't know that when they change currency at one of the local exchanges in country, that advertise "no commission," that the commission is already built in because they don't get the rate the large traders do.  Yet they insist they're right.  Frustrating.  Many of them don't seem to understand that your initial post had them changing a substantial amount of money well in advance to give them a notable savings.

 

Interesting about the exchange rate, vis-a-vis your post.  I shall peruse the sites you mention and perhaps we can continue a discussion outside this forum.  It probably will be more productive.  As an afterthought, but related, on our travels in Europe I had seen the Ford Escape, and I wondered why Ford didn't import this car here to compete with Honda( it is a better vehicle, despite a couple of mpg less than the Honda )?  The reason was the currency loss.  The Escape was a European vehicle whose production costs were in Euros.  They couldn't sell an imported car here to compete because of the currency penalty.  So what did Ford do?  they retooled a couple of factories they were closing anyway during their financial restructuring, and now manufacture the car HERE and export it THERE, gaining on the currency exchange, because its production costs are now in dollars, but the sale in Euros.

 

 

Author: svncontinents

Joined: 11/25/2011
Posts: 230
Trips Taken: 12
Traveler Since: 2007

August 09, 2012

 correction-the correct Ford car is the FIESTA, not the Escape.  Our bad.

Author: janice!

Joined: 3/18/2010
Posts: 259
Trips Taken: 7
Countries Visited:

many

Traveler Since: 1999

August 09, 2012

Centaur789, I see that your last post has been deleted. However, I was able to look at your websites and found them very interesting. You are truly a Renaissance man. Even though your upcoming GCT trip will be less upscale than the previous ones, I'm sure you realize that looking forward to the new experiences with a positive attitude is the key to enjoying a trip.

Author: janice!

Joined: 3/18/2010
Posts: 259
Trips Taken: 7
Countries Visited:

many

Traveler Since: 1999

August 09, 2012

Like most of the other posters in this topic, I have never monitored currency rates for many weeks with the intent of getting it at the best possible rate. I have always been able to acquire what I need after arrival and have never had any reason to regret doing so.  It's just not that important to me that I might have been able to get a better rate prior to the trip. 

Svncontinents, please don't give me another of your lectures. Your statements that others don't understand currency rates as well as you do are insulting. You really have no way of knowing what others understand. As for your charge that they insist that they are right, we all have the right to decide what is right for ourselves. No one, other than you, seems to insist what is right for others.

Author: singsling

Joined: 6/23/2010
Posts: 217
Trips Taken: 11
Traveler Since: 1995

August 09, 2012

Janice,

Thank  you for the very well said comments.  Like you said, each of us has different ideas on what's important for us, especially in the way of money.

Having lived overseas for 23 of 52 years, I did in fact watch the exchange rate, watched it fall just before a big trip I was planning, or just before the rent I had to pay for a year up front, watched it fall to the ground.  If I knew, you betcha I exchanged money quickly if I knew about the fall.  Most often I didn't have a chance to get my local currency to pay for these tickets, car repair or rent until after the fall.  In those cases large amounts of cash was necessary to pay for them.  But, I'm like most people I meet on trips, just buying souvenirs for others, something small to fit in suitcases, eat a local meal or drink a beer, buy chocolate, what I exchange  in currency for these type things on a trip is miniscule compared to how I had to be concerned for local currency that now I'm relieved I am blessed to just go on my trip and not worry if I will lose a penny or a hundred dollars on my exchange.

This is not the first time svncontinents has seemingly through discussion insulted people when they want others to think as they do.  These kind of people are easily spotted when first seeing them on a ship or tour bus, and they are precisely why I don't like to become friendly with such people while on tour.  I avoid them like the plague.  I have had great joy to have met a lot of friendly people who don't pressure with words what we should do, think, eat, buy, or use.  And we have had a lot of fun with a lot of people on our travels, but avoid those who are like svncontinents.

 

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 886
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

August 09, 2012

Right again, Janice_  and Slingsing.  If I can afford to travel, I can afford to not worry about a few cents here or there when it comes to money exchange rates.  I buy currency for the first country I'm going to travel in from my bank before I leave.  That's for things like taxis, cups of coffee, etc.  After that, I hit the ATMs.  I carry US dollars to pay my limo driver who doesn't accept credit cards.  If I can help it, I never touch it again once I'm on my way.  If I have a currency converter card with me, it's so that I have a better idea what things cost.  When the Euro first came out, it was about the equivalent of the Dollar, which made it easier for those of us who are mathematically challenged.

Author: wattsed

Joined: 3/30/2010
Posts: 126
Trips Taken: 2
Countries Visited:

All seven continents, 113 countries and all states except Hawaii and Idaho.Plus some interesting places that are not countries such as The zores, Falkland Islands, South Georgia, etc.

Traveler Since: 2010

August 10, 2012

Several quotes to hopefully put this thread to rest--

"A decision is best evaluated at the time a decision is made and not at a later date" will apply to all who decide to purchase ahead of time or use ATMs, or credit cards, cash, etc.

"hindsight is 20/20"  therefore after a decision is made never look back because you "don't cry over spilled milk"    As an old sage ball player once said, "never look back  because someone( or something) may be gaining on you!"

"Every individuals is entitled to  their own ideas and means"

And a favorite of my Mom--"I have never seen a Brinks truck follow a hearse to the cemetary!"

Author: singsling

Joined: 6/23/2010
Posts: 217
Trips Taken: 11
Traveler Since: 1995

August 10, 2012

Wattsed,

Thank you for the wise quotes.  I remember while living in Singapore and the rates dropped before I  had a chance to buy my $45,000 worth of sing dollars for rent.  I took somewhat of a beating, but my husband assured me I shouldn't worry, what's done is done, we can't take it with us.

Thank you for your comments.

 

Author: svncontinents

Joined: 11/25/2011
Posts: 230
Trips Taken: 12
Traveler Since: 2007

August 11, 2012

 As JP Morgan once said, "if you have to ask the price, you can't afford it."  But nowhere has anyone ever said that JP Morgan paid more than he had to for anything, even to saving a few pennies on the dollar.  Perhaps Pauline is following JP Morgan's advice.  We do, too-but the latter of his less publicized advice-"never pay more for something than you have to."  

 

So, to each his own.  If anyone has a problem with what we post as reasons, and feel that they're being lectured, why, we have no problem with their not reading what we want to say.  Of course, if' we're wrong, why anyone can post something that refutes what we say, and prove us wrong.  That happens, sometimes.  The fact that others haven't may indeed mean that others are unaware of the factors which we have cited. but that, is not our problem, and should not limit our posting factors which we cite to support our view.

 

It's a common tactic to attack the messenger when one doesn't like the message.  Hardly productive.  So, reply to what we've said, and avoid the personal attacks, shall we?

Author: wattsed

Joined: 3/30/2010
Posts: 126
Trips Taken: 2
Countries Visited:

All seven continents, 113 countries and all states except Hawaii and Idaho.Plus some interesting places that are not countries such as The zores, Falkland Islands, South Georgia, etc.

Traveler Since: 2010

August 11, 2012

7-C, NO ONE  is questioning your reasoning or facts or logic or ideas, what most object to is that you continue to push your idea as if were the only one and then continue to push it time after time even when others may  agree with you but for convience or other reasons don't agree to follow your ideas...You did it time after time when you pressed that the only way to go is to get a visa on the front end, eveyrtime, all the time even when it was conclusively shown that in some cases it is much more cost effective and easier to get a visa on  your arrival (i.e., Turkey)  Sometimes I question your own logic---on the visa thing you pushed spending much larger sums of money to get a visa in advance in spite of the fact it is proved to be cheaper to get it on arrival and, here, you push saving pennies by buying euros in advance rather than the few dollars it cost to use an ATM or credit card...$40 or more to get the visa is much more than the few dollars(or none) on ATM fees...

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 886
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

August 11, 2012

Perhaps I may be following J.P. Morgan's advice, although not consciously.  My feeling is that if I want to enjoy myself, I choose a tour company whose prices I can afford without questioning every nickel and dime I spend.  There are more expensive companies, and there are people who prefer not to travel with a group.  My late husband was like that.  He would do a lot of reading up ahead of time and when he felt a guide was needed, he'd hire a private one for the day or whatever.  And if he couldn't afford to do it the way he wanted, he just wouldn't go.

Now that I travel solo, I do it with a group.  Most people I meet on GCT trips are friendly and congenial.  Most are open to new experiences or they'd stay home.  There has to be a lot of give and take, or the system won't work.

I'm looking forward to at least another year of travel.  At my age, I can't plan too far ahead.

Author: svncontinents

Joined: 11/25/2011
Posts: 230
Trips Taken: 12
Traveler Since: 2007

August 11, 2012

 to watsed-we're not going to rehash the visa thread here, because it's inappropriate, however we request that you review it so that you remember what we actually posted, and why.  We think that ou may have overlooked a few things which we said.  And for the record, when someone says something which is wrong, and we do know that it's wrong, well, we're going to refute it.  such was the case in the recent thread where a poster said that 'nobody can predict future rates," which we felt was wrong and we posted WHY it was wrong and we posted our sources for WHY it was wrong.  Perhaps people don't like that, and consider that 'lecturing;' Maybe you do as well, but we are not advocates of the standard of "I said it and therefore it is so."  We will agree that some may not like to be bombarded with things they did not know previously, and feel that such is 'lecturing,' but we're proponents of having the standard of evidence, when we can post it, for our opinions.  As we said previously, that standard may be trivial to some, but as we said, that's not our problem; it's theirs.  And as far as continuing to post, are you suggesting that we not reply to others who may post things which we do not agree?  We hope not.

 

to Pauline-your last post is the one which we respect the most.  You acknowledged what we said, and indicated that while you may realize that you're not doing what may be the most efficient, you're doing what you want. anyway, despite knowing that your choice may not be the most efficient.  that's what makes a ballgame.  We have absolutely no quarrel with that, and have no reply, nor CAN we make a reply to that.  Because if we say "did you know or are aware of xyz" and you respond that you are but you make the choice you do anyway, then there's nothing to discuss.  Pity that others aren't as willing to take the same viewpoint.  

Author: janice!

Joined: 3/18/2010
Posts: 259
Trips Taken: 7
Countries Visited:

many

Traveler Since: 1999

August 11, 2012

 Does anybody else wish we had an "ignore poster" option here?

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 886
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

August 11, 2012

Why do I feel insulted here?

Author: nanaandpapa

Joined: 3/30/2011
Posts: 445
Trips Taken: 15
Countries Visited:

Aruba, Austria, Australia, Bermuda, Belgium, Botswana, Canada, China, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Rep., Egypt, England, Fiji, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Luxembourg, Mexico, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Russia, South Africa, Spain, St. Marten (fr), St. Martin (nd), Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, USA, Vatican, Zimbabwe

Traveler Since: 2002

August 11, 2012

7Cs.

 If, as you say "to Pauline-your last post is the one which we respect the most.  You acknowledged what we said, and indicated that while you may realize that you're not doing what may be the most efficient, you're doing what you want. anyway, despite knowing that your choice may not be the most efficient.  that's what makes a ballgame.  We have absolutely no quarrel with that, and have no reply, nor CAN we make a reply to that.  Because if we say "did you know or are aware of xyz" and you respond that you are but you make the choice you do anyway, then there's nothing to discuss.  Pity that others aren't as willing to take the same viewpoint.", Why are you replying anyway?

Author: janice!

Joined: 3/18/2010
Posts: 259
Trips Taken: 7
Countries Visited:

many

Traveler Since: 1999

August 11, 2012

I must be missing posts because I can't find any by Pauline in which  she acknowledged that what she is doing may not be the most efficient. My impression from what she has written is just the opposite.

Author: singsling

Joined: 6/23/2010
Posts: 217
Trips Taken: 11
Traveler Since: 1995

August 11, 2012

Svcontinents, you seem to feel that you have not been lecturing, but letting everyone know you may know more than all of the rest of us

.You seem to refute that you were lecturing.  In fact many of your comments have been condescending and lecturing to just abouteverybody who has posted on this thread. Below are words that definitely are condescending-all taken from your threads!  This is just  very few examples.  So, these are your own words.  Take a look at  how much your words are spiteful to the posters.

Pity that others aren't as willing to take the same viewpoint

 

We will agree that some may not like to be bombarded with things they did not know previously, and feel that such is 'lecturing,' but we're proponents of having the standard of evidence, when we can post it, for our opinions.  As we said previously, that standard may be trivial to some, but as we said, that's not our problem; it's theirs

 

The fact that others haven't may indeed mean that others are unaware of the factors which we have cited. but that, is not our problem, and should not limit our posting factors which we cite to support our view.

based on what you post, it does appear that your understanding of currency rates is far better than most who post here, which we appreciate.

 

it is evident that nanaandpapa are uninterested in saving even a few pennies on the dollar

 

As far as predicting, it reqally isn't very difficult

 

So we'll enjoy the meal we get to have 'on the house' because we saved on the exchange rate by purchasing in advance, while others will enjoy the bill they get for paying for that same meal via an ATM or credit card, if in fact they can use a credit card.

despite knowing that your choice may not be the most efficient.  that's what makes a ballgame.  

 

This seems to be bullying that it is meant to be.

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 886
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

August 11, 2012

Janice_

I can't find one either.  I do what I want and what I can afford to do and what my health allows me to do.  I don't over-research things that don't need it. 

For instance, as I have posted in the past, Trip Mate travel insurance serves my purposes and has worked for me on the two times I have needed it.  So that's what I get on GCT trips.  Maybe, I could do a lot of looking and find another insurance company that would have refunded my money in such a short period of time.  But why bother?

Maybe, I could do a lot of looking and comparing and find another tour company that would take me to a place I wanted to tour and not charge a single supplement.  But why bother?

Some people like to do all that.  Fine, for them.  But not for me.  And at nearly 80 years old, I think I'm entitled to do as I wish.

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