US Dollars vs. Canadian Dollars

Jun 26th, 2002, 09:18 PM
  #1  
ktfern
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US Dollars vs. Canadian Dollars

Planning to be in Victoria for a few days in late July. Do I need to convert US Dollars to Canadian before I go so I get the best rate or wait til I get to Canada OR do I need to get Canadian money at all? Is US currency accepted (most places here in Oregon do not accept Canadian money). What about using a credit or debit card. If the charge is in Canadian money, with that be converted or what? HELP!!
 
Jun 26th, 2002, 09:44 PM
  #2  
George
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Most stores in Victoria will gladly take US dollars, but you'll get screwed on the exchange. ATM's are all over the place and are your best bet for getting Canadian money at a decent exchange rate. The majority of restaurants and stores will also accept your debit card, which will get you a decent exchange rate as well. Credit cards have the next best exchange rate after the above suggestions.

When you pay for Canadian charges with your credit or debit card, or withdraw Canadian cash from an ATM, the amount will be converted and charged to you in US dollars. You'll see the conversion rate when you get your statement.
 
Jun 26th, 2002, 09:47 PM
  #3  
Daniel
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Gary, if you're out there, its time to talk vigorish!!
 
Jun 27th, 2002, 05:01 AM
  #4  
Cindy
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Yeah, Gary, help us out here, would you?
 
Jun 27th, 2002, 05:38 AM
  #5  
AO
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Even though it was a decent exchange rate, my bank charged a fee each time I used an ATM to withdraw cash in Italy. If I'd known, I would have not used it so frequently, and instead have gotten a larger sum at the get-go.
 
Jun 27th, 2002, 06:13 AM
  #6  
Flynn
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What I do from New York is go to Citibank is change $100 U.S. into Canadian currency. There's no charge and I usually get a favorable exchange. In that way, I have some taxi and pocket money when I arrive in Canada. For the remainder I use my credit cards and ATM for cash which is then converted later by my bank for a more favorable rate.

Using US dollars in Canada doesn't get you a very favorable rate exchange. I don't like travelers checks unless I'm carrying large amounts for a big trip to Europe. Then it's worth the hassle of showing I.D. but for a few days in Canada, I prefer the above method.
 
Jun 27th, 2002, 07:06 AM
  #7  
gary
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Most of the answers above are correct so there's not much to add. The reason places are glad to take US$ is that they will likely give you much less than a fair rate of exchange. And of course you're going to get Can$ as change. But it will be based on converted value of the US currency you give. In other words if you give them a $20US bill and the store is giving 40% Exchange they will treat that bill like $28Can and give you canadian change accordingly.

But what you should do is change a small amount of your US$ to Canadian at a bank or currency exchange immediately on arriving. The Bank usually charges around 2% vigorish on your money while private currency eschanges are usually less than half that. For the rest of your stay use credit cards, debit cards and ATM's.

Finally don't ask if the posted price is in US$. If it was it would say so. And Canadians tend to dislike being asked 'How much is that in US' or worse 'How much is that in real money'. The exchange rate right now is very close to $1US = $1.50 Can. the math is real easy so do it yourself.
 
Jun 27th, 2002, 07:11 AM
  #8  
Cindy
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Yay, Gary! I knew you'd ride to the rescue!
 
Jun 27th, 2002, 07:49 PM
  #9  
ktfern
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Thanks for all the good info. But what's "vigorish"?
 
Jun 27th, 2002, 09:00 PM
  #10  
gary
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It's a Yiddish derivitive basically meaning a 'piece of the action' or something more than reasonable interest.
 
Jun 28th, 2002, 06:39 AM
  #11  
gary
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An even better definition would be a charge or a fee that more closely resembles extortion.
 
Jun 28th, 2002, 06:56 AM
  #12  
Cindy
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Gevalt. You mean we actually have a word to cover that?
 
Jun 28th, 2002, 08:49 AM
  #13  
Bean
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Well there is a word for people who like to have sex with dead people...weird...
 
Jun 28th, 2002, 09:05 AM
  #14  
Cindy
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That's not quite the point I was trying to make. There is certainly a word for this concept in English (usury) but I guess I was hoping that "we" (i.e. those of us who speak Yiddish sometimes) didn't have such a specific word for it. Oh, well. Nisht geferlich.
 
Jun 28th, 2002, 09:45 AM
  #15  
gary
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'Nisht geferlah' = No big deal. I'm sure someone was about to ask.
 
Jun 28th, 2002, 10:27 AM
  #16  
Cindy
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I stand corrected re the spelling, although two of my relatives used to spend the entire Passover dinner arguing over whether one should say "kugel" or "kiggel." Anyway, I think we've wandered off-topic.
 

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