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Old 02-06-2009, 17:48   #1
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Cruising Currency

Given our "challenging" economic times, I've been pondering which country's currency is the best to hold for a couple of years of cruising. I've decided to get out of Dodge - o.k., Canada - until there is more work in my field(shipyard steelworker), and plant myself in Asia for 2 to 3 years. I'm trying to determine whether it is better to switch my savings from Can$ to USD, Euros, or whatever else. Gold is a consideration, as the local "experts" seem to think it'll go to $2,200/oz. Anyone have an opinion on this?
Mike
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Old 02-06-2009, 18:28   #2
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Originally Posted by bangkaboat View Post
I'm trying to determine whether it is better to switch my savings from Can$ to USD, Euros, or whatever else. Gold is a consideration, as the local "experts" seem to think it'll go to $2,200/oz. Anyone have an opinion on this?
Mike
Well, I would say if you intend to put it in and forget about it, you do this at your own risk -- much in the same way you assume risk by asking strangers for advice. That said, pick a currency on an upward secular trend.

I think there are some good points in this (seemingly unrelated) thread.
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Old 02-06-2009, 20:44   #3
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I would not put all of my currency in one basket if I was living overseas. I would keep most of it in my parachute destination where I intended to return if things didn't work out.

When I was in New Zealand, I met the skipper of a megayacht who moved all of his currency to New Zealand at precisely the wrong time, and his money went to half of its value.

In another location, I met a fireman who took his entire pension and converted it to gold when it was at its high, and he had to liquidate it at less than fifty percent of what he paid for it.

Currencies fluctuate, and unless you have a very long life and eternal youth, you may be an old man before the chosen currency turns in your favor.

If you want to pursue an international lifestyle based on currencies, you can arrange a trip to locations that have weak currencies relative to your own.
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Old 02-06-2009, 23:56   #4
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Even better, no currencies at all. I have a friend that just came back from the pacific islands and most of the really small islands didn't even want money!! They wanted to trade for stuff instead, for example, they always want T-shirts and other items of clothing as well as some other daily usable items. In exchange he received great food and lodging, etc..

That always sounds like a great option to me.. Good luck though
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Old 03-06-2009, 03:40   #5
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I would think the canadian dollar would be a good one to hold.Major oil producer and all that other good stuff buried in the ground there.
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Old 03-06-2009, 05:06   #6
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Hedge your bets, don't put all in one basket.
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Old 03-06-2009, 06:58   #7
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Given that our buck is enjoying a nice run up lately against the USD it might not be the best time to abandon ship completely.
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Old 03-06-2009, 06:59   #8
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It would appear that your question has two parts:
1) Which currency is likely to hold its value or appreciate?

I don't know.

2) Which currency is widely accepted in the cruising area?

It depends where in Asia you go. For example, the Vietnamese want USD but just a few miles away in Thailand, they want Thai baht. I would say that generally (at least for SE Asia), the currency exchange businesses are fair and reasonable, with a bite of around 1%. If you are changing USD into baht or several other currencies, they will give you a little premium for crisp new $100 bills as opposed to twenties, etc.
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Old 03-06-2009, 09:24   #9
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many say gold has peaked. Who knows... I would go with US, American Express traveler's Cheques... or $100 US bills if you are brave. Everyone wants them both overseas....
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Old 03-06-2009, 16:50   #10
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I'd certainly accept that I shouldn't switch to one basket, my nephew - an accountant with Ernst & Young - straightened me out on that, last night. My wife & I own properties in The Philippines, so that's where I'll be for the next couple of years, or so. I know they like the USD, but it has been pretty shaky. Unfortunately, it isn't so easy to change Can$ in many parts of Asia for a decent rate, so I suppose it'll be "ten of this, ten of that, etc". Thanks, all!
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Old 03-06-2009, 19:20   #11
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Living mostly in Asia you are right that the USD is better accepted. (Even when the Cdn$ was higher or on par with USD the money changers would give you significantly less as they know the Cdn Government needs to keep their dollar sub-par for NAFTA reasons.

As Dave says, keep your parachute in Cdn funds… if that is where you would return in an emergency, and spread out so as to catch up and downsides.

The biggest savings is to spend less!
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Old 03-06-2009, 20:10   #12
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The best place to change foreign cash,in the Philippines,is at the major shopping malls.They post the rates for everyone to view.So ask your contacts in the Philippines to check the malls that you would be shopping at to see if they are quoting CDN$.
Another way to get pesos is to have a Visa credit or debit card linked to your Canadian bank account and go to a Philippines bank and get a cash advance.That way I think Visa control the actual exchange.
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