Another Buenos Aires question - money

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Nov 15th, 2018, 10:01 AM
  #1
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Another Buenos Aires question - money

Everyone says you have to carry around cash because a) it's hard to come by (ATMs don't always work; cambios aren't always open) and b) credit cards aren't always taken (although the places we'll eat dinner - which will be our most expensive item each day - do).

So, two questions:

1. How much cash does one need to carry around on a daily basis? I honestly have no idea what things cost in BA - for example, if we stop for cup of coffee and a cookie, how much? Casual lunch? Bottle of water? Advil? (We'll be in BA 4 full days)

2. I carry a bag with an open top in San Francisco, but then I don't carry much cash (I never seem to have more than $20 in cash). When I travel in the US, I carry a regular purse. When I travel abroad, I usually carry a Baggallini type bag (zippered top with a change purse inside that clips onto a hook in the inside of the bag). Since it seems like one must carry around cash in BA, is a money belt/pouch a necessity? I've never used one.

Note that our hotel room has a laptop-size safe.
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Nov 16th, 2018, 01:23 PM
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Carry about $25- $50 worth of pesos and a CC (Visa or Master) which you can use for restaurants, purchases, etc. This has never been an issue with us....we carry a bit of cash and a CC maybe a stashed &100 US....but we feel we can always return for a purchase that would be best for us in dollars. And we have a color copy of our passport, in case of need.

Friends use a money belt - especially if planning to make significant purchases. I would be cautious of an open sack....Baggolini bag should be fine. Cross body, if possible.

Have fun...
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Nov 16th, 2018, 02:22 PM
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Baggolini bag should be fine. Cross body, if possible.
That's what I've got - it's a perfect bag actually since the money purse inside is clipped on by a metal hook.

Thanks.
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Nov 24th, 2018, 04:27 PM
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Arrived EZE at 1120 today. Spent at least 30 min waiting in line to exchange 4 $100 crisp new bills for pesos. We fshall see how long this money lasts. Have 3 nights in BA and Batipoche before heading to TDP Chile, met out travel agent Isabel who helped us set up out Cell phone for Argentina and Chile,
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Nov 25th, 2018, 09:21 AM
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Along the lines of money. Cost of Tiendo Leon car service from EZE to our hotel in Recoleta was 1300 pesos. Dinner last night at Sanjuanjino was inexpensive. Empanadas at 42 p, half carafe of red wine 210p. Steak and fries 310p. Taxi to AEP airport 170p. Extra baggage fee 650p for 15-23 kg.
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Nov 25th, 2018, 10:30 AM
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mjs, Thank you for the additional information. We'll be arriving Dec 5, so every little bit of info is appreciated. We too plan on exchanging money at the airport bank and taking Tiendo Leon into the city. Food costs were also helpful . Kathy
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Nov 26th, 2018, 08:26 PM
  #7
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It is now almost 40 pesos to the US dollar!
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Nov 27th, 2018, 05:09 AM
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Currently on ferry from Bariloche to P Varas, Chile. Should note that hotels in Argentina and many tourist activities in Argentina appear to be priced in dollars so are not affected by the exchange rate.
Others costs such as restaurants, taxis etc paid with local currency. Argentina peso in a free fall. Exchange rate in July according to our guide today was $1dollar to 18 pesos. Last week it was 35 pesos and last night it was 39.9.
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Nov 27th, 2018, 08:45 AM
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Currently on ferry from Bariloche to P Varas, Chile. Should note that hotels in Argentina and many tourist activities in Argentina appear to be priced in dollars so are not affected by the exchange rate.
Others costs such as restaurants, taxis etc paid with local currency. Argentina peso in a free fall. Exchange rate in July according to our guide today was $1dollar to 18 pesos. Last week it was 35 pesos and last night it was 39.9.
My whole life, this has confused me. So if I'm eating in local restaurants (which I will be doing in February) and paying in pesos that I've "bought" with dollars, my meals will be costing me half the amount they would have cost, say, a year ago?

Too bad my hotel was pre-paid with US Dollars!
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Nov 27th, 2018, 12:04 PM
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Your guide must have meant July 2017 or he/she does not know what he/she is talking about.
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Nov 27th, 2018, 07:32 PM
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My bad for taking my tour guides statement for fact. Still it
was 18 to the dollar in December 2017 and 20 to the dollar in May 2018 so the Arg peso has really taken a dive in the last 7 months or so. I should pay more attention to the emerging market. Does Argentina have a terrible balance of payments problem or printing a lot of money?
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Nov 28th, 2018, 11:37 AM
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My suspicion is that most of the upper end hotels in Argentina price themselves in dollars so the exchange rates may not affect one’s cost. There is no other reason that the Four Seasons in Buenos Aires would have cost twice as much as my stay at the Chicago 4S recently. I have a great Buenos Aires tour agent and I think she was able to get some discounts for our lodgings for our time in Argentina. The big cost issue for us was our arrival in BA in time for the G20. Something I did not take into consideration before our hastily arranged holiday. Iam fiding food and drinks inexpensive even in restaurants where I pay with credit card. Moderate restaurants have a mains cost between 200-550 pesos and appetizers and desserts 100-200 pesos. Easy for two to eat for about 800 pesos. Had a massage in Bariloche for 50 min at a cost of 1300 pesos or about $35 which appears to be a decent price for a tourist town
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Nov 29th, 2018, 12:46 PM
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Even a small hotel in Buenos Aires (in Palermo Soho) in 2016 wanted payment in USD cash. I gather it has either something to do with inflation protection or taxes. Restaurants always charged in pesos and in my opinion were not a good value compared to other countries in South America..

One year ago the ARS was about 17 to the dollar and within the last week it was 39.

So really your guide was off by about 6 months. Regardless, obviously the ARS fell of a cliff.

I wonder what the inflation rate is for the past year?
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Dec 2nd, 2018, 08:25 AM
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"I wonder what the inflation rate is for the past year?" My old company, who monitor these things worldwide, puts inflation to October 2018 @ 45% p.a.

The exchange rate seems to have stabilised somewhat in recent months, but if normal rules were to apply one would expect ARS to continue to decline against hard currencies by a similar amount.

If I were to return to Argentina anytime soon, I think I would be changing cash little and often but trying to pay for stuff by card wherever possible.

If I were an Argentine business, I would be trying to get every payment I could in US $ or € cash.

Once a country gets into a spiral of hyperinflation it is very difficult to get out of it. I really feel for the people of Argentina.
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