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Practice using pesos


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Until you figure out how to use a formula for converting pesos to dollars and begin thinking in pesos, here’s a way to start. Move the decimal point over one space and divide the amount in half adding back a few bucks.  So I’d figure the 4000.00 peso rug is about 220 dollars. I just calculated it at today’s exchange and it’s 212 dollars so my guesstimate is close enough for me to decide if I want to buy the rug. After awhile you just automatically convert in casual transactions and calculate formulas when exact amounts are needed. 

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Used to vacation in Acapulco ever year during the years of 1973 10 to 1 thru into the 80s 7,000 to 1, I think, so I made out a exchange rate card that showed USD in one column  (  one dollar, 3 5, 10, 20, 30 40, 50 across in another was the peso equivalent. Worked perfect and easy to have with you at all times. The peso was moving so fast the merchants started to print than and give then out to all us Gringos It works well, Give it a try or convert it on you Ipad or phone.

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The OP profile indicates Maryland residency.  Most US states have sales tax; Maryland's appears to be 6%. 

Prices in Mexico include all taxes.

While the peso:USD rate fluctuates, it's been running near 19:1.  The latest quote is 18.93.  Factor in the 6% sales tax, and it's more like 20.06.  

So for now, I'd suggest the OP simply dividing the peso purchases price by 20.  To make it easy, think of a 100 peso note as a 5 dollar bill, or a 200 peso note as a 10 dollar bill.  

 

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I rarely  convert pesos to dollars just quickly get used to compare pesos prices to pesos prices.

Just like temperature in Celsius. Note what the temperature is in C and what it feels like.

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11 hours ago, ccw said:

Hell all,

We will be visiting in February. Are their any ways to learn using pesos? I am not worried about exchange rates, just a way to feel comfortable using them.

 

Thanks,

CCW

Download the Peso to Dollar app to your phone. Go to your app  store and search for peso dollar conversion, download and install. Type in your peso amount and it will show the dollars.

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CCW - I   hope you will enjoy your visit with us in February - your concern per your note was not about the exchange rate but use of Mexican money, and being familiar with the various coins and paper money..  - I hope this attachment will help you [ hopefully I have successfully attached it  ]

Getting Used to Mexican Currency - Focus On Mexico -

The first time I ever laid eyes on Mexican money I said, “Oh look! It's like Monopoly money!” I can assure you, while it is pretty, it spends just like real money! If you're not used to dealing in more than one currency, it can feel daunting at first to convert from your home currency to pesos quickly and confidently. I've seen many ...

..

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If using pesos appears daunting for you maybe you shouldn't go out alone.. Each bill is clearly marked as to the denomination.. 

Why would you want to quickly and confidently convert to your home currency for other than interest sake..

Wait till you get home and use a calculator ..

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25 minutes ago, TelsZ4 said:

If using pesos appears daunting for you maybe you shouldn't go out alone.. Each bill is clearly marked as to the denomination.. 

Why would you want to quickly and confidently convert to your home currency for other than interest sake..

Wait till you get home and use a calculator ..

Perhaps they want to know their cost in USD when shopping for higher priced items to bring back (art, high end clothing, jewelry, etc.).  

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The easiest way has already been pointed out above:  Move the decimal one place left, e.g. 200 becomes 20, the divide by 2 and it becomes 10.  200 Pesos is about $10 US, etc..

Also for the OP, prices here are shown using the $ sign.  e.g. $50 = 50 Pesos or about 2.5 US dollars.

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13 hours ago, Xena said:

Until you figure out how to use a formula for converting pesos to dollars and begin thinking in pesos, here’s a way to start. Move the decimal point over one space and divide the amount in half adding back a few bucks.  So I’d figure the 4000.00 peso rug is about 220 dollars. I just calculated it at today’s exchange and it’s 212 dollars so my guesstimate is close enough for me to decide if I want to buy the rug. After awhile you just automatically convert in casual transactions and calculate formulas when exact amounts are needed. 

This is exactly how I've done it, very easy, ballpark figures work.  However, when I moved here over 10 years ago, the peso actually was 10-11 per USD.  A roast chicken cost 70 pesos, around 7 USD.  Today a roast chicken costs around 120, which is still around 7 USD, although those rates are not pegged to eachother.   In August 2008 I had an emergency hip replacement - during the Great Economic Meltdown.  The day I cashed out of the hospital, the exchange rate was exactly 10/USD.  3 months later, the USD tanked but the peso tanked even more and stabilized at around 13/USD.  I would have saved  $3000USD if my surgery had been at that time, but that was not what the universe had in store for me.

We USians have enjoyed a bonanza in the peso devaluation of the last 2 years.  However, in the purely MX economy, this has been rather inflationary, and the people of the villages struggle with prices at the same time that we find them so low.  So, please be generous with tipping, giving to the poor, and compensating your long time help.  

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15 hours ago, ccw said:

Hell all,

We will be visiting in February. Are their any ways to learn using pesos? I am not worried about exchange rates, just a way to feel comfortable using them.

 

Thanks,

CCW

Also be aware that if one uses an ATM for their source of  pesos, and ask for a 'large' amount (say 3000 pesos) one will get a number of 500 pesos notes. These are hard to spend and probably should not be 'presented for payment' to small stores but is OK for gas stations, Walmart, large restaurants where your bill might be 200-300 pesos.

 

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7 hours ago, RickS said:

Also be aware that if one uses an ATM for their source of  pesos, and ask for a 'large' amount (say 3000 pesos) one will get a number of 500 pesos notes. These are hard to spend and probably should not be 'presented for payment' to small stores but is OK for gas stations, Walmart, large restaurants where your bill might be 200-300 pesos.

 

When I have a bunch of ATM $500.00 peso notes I go to OXXO and they always give me change even for a 1 liter $16.50 peso Coca Lite.

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2 minutes ago, AlanMexicali said:

When I have a bunch of ATM $500.00 peso notes I go to OXXO and they always give me change even for a 1 liter $16.50 peso Coca Lite.

Yes. I most often break my 500 peso notes at Farmacia Guadalajara and Soriana. They always have lots of change and don’t mind the 500s at all.

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Be prepared to use cash.  Most small stores and restaurants will only accept cash.   Larger stores and fine dining restaurants will usually take Visa and MasterCard but it is very difficult to use American Express or Discover Card.  Also forget about using traveler's checks.  Your bank will charge you a foreign transaction fee every time you use your debit or credit card. 

Make sure you tell your bank that you are going to be traveling to Mexico and give them the dates of your stay.  If you don't, they will lock your card "for your protection" and you might not be able to have it unlocked and you will have to return home to get a replacement card.

Get your Mexican currency at an ATM in the Mexican airport where you arrive.  You will get a better rate than at one of the currency exchange stands at the airport.  I had my bank increase my daily withdrawal limit so that I could take out more money from the ATM at one time to reduce the quantity of ATM fees with both banks.

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2 minutes ago, airchamby said:

Your bank will charge you a foreign transaction fee every time you use your debit or credit card. 

Sorry for those folks, but Capital One does not have such a fee.

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47 minutes ago, airchamby said:

Be prepared to use cash.  Most small stores and restaurants will only accept cash.   Larger stores and fine dining restaurants will usually take Visa and MasterCard but it is very difficult to use American Express or Discover Card.  Also forget about using traveler's checks.  Your bank will charge you a foreign transaction fee every time you use your debit or credit card. 

Make sure you tell your bank that you are going to be traveling to Mexico and give them the dates of your stay.  If you don't, they will lock your card "for your protection" and you might not be able to have it unlocked and you will have to return home to get a replacement card.

Get your Mexican currency at an ATM in the Mexican airport where you arrive.  You will get a better rate than at one of the currency exchange stands at the airport.  I had my bank increase my daily withdrawal limit so that I could take out more money from the ATM at one time to reduce the quantity of ATM fees with both banks.

The problem now for about 1 year is Mexican Banks have reduced the máximum peso withdrawal per transaction per day and possibly from one account. Banamex and Banorte was $8,000 pesos but now is $6,000 pesos. Ban Regio is still $10,000 peso per transaction. The fee is $21 pesos at Ban Regio and $69.00 pesos at Banorte and $31.00 pesos at Banamex.

Increasing your US bank daily limit will get you more pesos in one day but you need to do more than 1 withdrawal and possibly go to more than one bank - 2 different Mexican Banks, and pay the US bank fee 2 or 3 times here in Mexico  - depending.

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10 hours ago, airchamby said:

Be prepared to use cash.  Most small stores and restaurants will only accept cash.   Larger stores and fine dining restaurants will usually take Visa and MasterCard but it is very difficult to use American Express or Discover Card.  Also forget about using traveler's checks.  Your bank will charge you a foreign transaction fee every time you use your debit or credit card. 

Make sure you tell your bank that you are going to be traveling to Mexico and give them the dates of your stay.  If you don't, they will lock your card "for your protection" and you might not be able to have it unlocked and you will have to return home to get a replacement card.

Get your Mexican currency at an ATM in the Mexican airport where you arrive.  You will get a better rate than at one of the currency exchange stands at the airport.  I had my bank increase my daily withdrawal limit so that I could take out more money from the ATM at one time to reduce the quantity of ATM fees with both banks.

There are many many credit cards available that do not charge foreign transaction fees.  I get excellent exchange rates as well on these cards.

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