The USD in Cancun

Discussion in 'Living in Cancun' started by Windknot, Sep 23, 2008.

  1. Windknot

    Windknot Regular Registered Member

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    Just how strong is the U.S. Dollar in Cancun? My friends here all seem to have dollar and peso accounts in their banks. Are there establishments that only accept dollars? Pesos? Is it generally more advantageous to pay in dollars? I ask this because on a recent trip to Merida via the Autopista, I had to pay 202 pesos at the cuota. But as I passed through the gate, I saw where I could have paid $9.50 usd. ...a savings of over 50% I'm thinking a dollar goes much further in Cancun, than the peso, no matter (almost) what the exchange rate is.
     
  2. cunspin

    cunspin Guest

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    The exchange rate is $1usd equals 10.67 pesos.
    Almost always the rate of exchange at most establishments is 10 pesos.
     
  3. Jim in Cancun

    Jim in Cancun Guest

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    Exchange houses downtown are giving 10:35 per USD.
     
  4. cunspin

    cunspin Guest

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    I got my rate from yahoo's currency converter so I am sure Jim is right.
     
  5. Windknot

    Windknot Regular Registered Member

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    My question did not mean to ask about the conversion rates, but whether or not the dollar was the preferred currency in Cancun.....and whether usually one could buy things cheaper with dollars (taking the conversion rate into account) I used the example of the toll at the autopista because 202 pesos (at 10.50) is $19.23.....and yet if one paid the toll with USD, all they needed was $9.50. Furthermore, I might have been told that there are a few restaurants in the HZ that only accept USD, but I find that hard to believe.

    S I'm just trying to find out what the deal is. Should I open a dollar and peso account at the bank?
     
  6. cunspin

    cunspin Guest

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    I think your mistaken on the toll I have driven that highway many times and not one of the tolls costs 9 dollars in any conversion.
    No Restaurant in the HZ requires payment in USD. The Currency is pesos and it is not cheaper to pay for anything in USD anyplace that I know of. The USD is however accepted at all major stores or establishments like Costco for example I pay with USD all the time but it is just for convenience not because of a better deal.
     
  7. T.J.

    T.J. I can choose my own title Registered Member

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    I too think there is some misunderstanding about the toll road. It just cannot be. My guess is that maybe $19.50 with the "1" falling off but even that makes no sense as coins are not accepted anywhere except when stupid Americans leave some as tips.

    Many times at the airport I have been asked by porters if I could give dollars or pesos for coins.

    I must respectfully disagree with Spin about the dollar not being a better deal. Stores like Walmart, Mega (all but the one that burned down, or is it burned up?) Soriana, Costco etc all have exchange rates far better than the banks if you pay in US dollars. I always keep a $50 or two in my pocket for when I go to these stores. You get more bang for your buck.
     
  8. Steve

    Steve Administrator Owner

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    Certainly, in the Hotel Zone dollars are quite widespread. Most tours and nightclub entrance prices are stated in USD with the price in pesos less obviously displayed, the rate is always beneficial to the seller.

    In my experience though dollars are a rare find downtown. If I ever get offered them in change, which doesnt happen very often, I usually turn my nose up and ask for pesos.

    Through the nature of the business, we do however unavoidably end up with dollars sometimes and we either stockpile them for a rainy day, use them at Walmart / Costco etc where the rate is better than the banks or failing that Jannet knows an unlicensed money exchange place where all the Mexican tour reps go to change their tips into pesos to get a "better than the bank" rate.
     
  9. Jim in Cancun

    Jim in Cancun Guest

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    Some places will give better rates than the exchange houses--places like Sam's and Walmart for example. As far as "preferred"--I would say the peso. I don't know of any place that ONLY accepts dollars and it is the law that the Mexican peso is legal tender and all prices have to be listed in pesos--now the law and the enforcing thereof are always 2 different things.
     
  10. Windknot

    Windknot Regular Registered Member

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    Thanks y'all....that's the answer(s) I was looking for.

    However, I must stand by my experience at the toll booth, because I know what I paid, and I know what I saw. Now, it IS possible that the "1" fell off the "Dollars" sign, and the tarriff was more like $19.50; that would surely make sense. That sign is also after the window, meaning that you have already paid before you see it. But you can be sure I'm going to be ready and ask in about 10 days, when I pass that way again.

    Interesting to see about WalMart, Costco, Sams, and some other stores giving a rate better than the banks. For those that don't already know, you also get a better rate when you use your BoA ATM card to get pesos from a Santander ATM. I remember (months ago) when Santander was giving 10.85, I got 11.02 from the ATM, and with no fees.
     
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