Jamaica- Negril vs. Montego Bay

Old Nov 30th, 2010, 07:33 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 93,350
wow Weadles... 29 trips!! NICE!! lucky you.

Now you've got me curious... when you pay in USD in a small local restaurant that has the menu ony in JMD, do you get a decent rate of exchange? In other words do restaurants match the rate you'd get exchanging your own money at the cambio?
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Old Nov 30th, 2010, 02:39 PM
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Hey Suze,

I'm probably a lot older than you! We've been going to Negril since 1982, that's why it's now 29 trips later! I will check with my husband about the exchange rate at restaurants and post back.
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Old Nov 30th, 2010, 03:20 PM
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I doubt you're much older, i'm pretty old (lol)!!

I went to Negril 2x back in the 70's when I lived in New Hampshire and Vermont. But after I moved out to Seattle in the early 80's it made more sense to head south to Mexico (21 trips) instead and recently I've added Hawaii (5 trips).

Maybe Negril is different. But in Puerto Vallarta if you spend in USD it is accepted, but at bad rates like 10/1, when the daily exchange rate lately can be 13/1 or 12/1, so basically you're overpaying every single purchase, by not using peso.
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Old Nov 30th, 2010, 03:23 PM
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(I was in Negril for the 3x for 10 days this past July, a reunion trip with a big group of old friends.)
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Old Dec 1st, 2010, 05:50 AM
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So interesting, Suze. My husband says that the exchange rate at the restaurants was almost exactly the same as what was offered in town. This was two years ago. I have no idea what it might be now. It's just a personal preference of mine (ours) not to carry around much cash unless absolutely necessary.

On another subject... we are going to Mexico in January ( Playa del Carmen and Cancun). So you would advise using cash whenever possible?
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Old Dec 1st, 2010, 07:40 AM
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Thanks for checking, that is interesting to know about the exchange rates in Negril.

The thing that happens in Mexico are reports of credit card fraud against tourists (people use a card in a restaurant in Cabo and end up with a bunch of purchases at Home Depot in TX they did not make!). Sure you can dispute it but it's a hassle.

So yes my own personal method is I always use cash. I use my credit card to pay the hotel bill, but besides that it stays locked up in the safe with my passport, spare cash, etc. I can use a Santanders bank ATM in PV for free as a Bank of America customer, so I simply go to an ATM every few days, just like I would at home. I don't carry around wads of cash, just what I need for the day, leaving the rest in the hotel safe.

I don't rent cars or do high priced tours or activities, but for that I guess you'd probably use a credit card.
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