Americans who wish to resume traveling internationally can do so now, benefiting from the strong US dollar. Should the dollar remain strong as many believe it will, then heading to a vacation destination overseas will give them more for less money. Here are 13 countries where the US dollar goes the furthest.
Why is the US Dollar So Strong?
The strong US dollar has benefited from a resilient economy, still stubbornly high inflation, and low unemployment relative to other countries, currently experiencing slowing growth or recession. The US dollar has remained the global reserve currency since 1944, meaning central banks hold many dollars for international transactions. Some believe the US dollar may be losing its status, but no one expects that to happen anytime soon.
After postponing travel in recent years, Americans target exciting destinations where exchange rates favor their wallet. We believe these 13 countries fit the bill for more affordable travel plans this year based on the strong US dollar against respective countries’ currencies on November 4, 2023.
A US dollar can be exchanged for 0.93 euro, Portugal’s currency. Portugal has a rich heritage worth exploring, from Moorish alleyways, Roman ruins, and storybook gardens and palaces to volcanic islands of the Azores or the beaches in the Algarve. The country is a welcoming population to foreign travelers and can direct them to the best of the country’s culture, gastronomy, and wines. It’s the closest country in continental Europe to the east coast of the United States. When a round-trip flight from New York to Lisbon is only $600 on average, it feels stupid not to travel to Portugal.
Next door to Portugal is its Iberian neighbor, Spain, which uses the Euro as its currency. There is much to see and do when traveling to geographically diverse Spain, depending on your preferences. Spain has dynamic urban cities with historical and cultural offerings, including Madrid, architectural Segovia, Barcelona, Roman walls, and medieval scenery. The country hosts archipelagos, snow-capped mountains, deserts, beaches, and the Mediterranean Sea. Foodies will be much at home in San Sebastian with its great cuisine and wine.
A US Dollar exchange is 17.46 Mexican pesos, beneficial for the many Americans who consider traveling to Mexico for its short distance to the states. Mexico is a hidden gem because the country offers so much for visitors to explore while still flying under the radar for most travelers. Mexico City, the country’s capital, is a sprawling metropolitan area with museums, cultural experiences, and good food. Instead, you may prefer a luxury resort vacation in Los Cabos, Riviera Maya, or Tulum to explore ancient ruins and the beaches.
Argentina is a popular destination in South America, with lively cities like Buenos Aires, praise-worthy architecture, peaceful wilderness, majestic waterfalls, national parks, and beautiful mountains. From cultural sites in their cities, cowboy life in The Pampos, to dramatic landscapes, millennial-old glaciers, and Patagonia, home to diverse wildlife, near Chile. Based on current rates, a US Dollar will be exchanged for about 347.19 Argentine pesos, providing travel cost benefits.
5. South Africa
A US dollar is 18.21 South African rands, up from a year ago, benefiting today’s American travelers a bit more. Cape Town has gorgeous coastline beaches, wine valleys, Cango Caves, and cruise boats to view migratory whales. One of the most popular destinations when heading to South Africa is The Kruger’s private reserves, home to the iconic Big 5 game viewing. The Big Five refers to the safari goer bucket list, including the elephant, rhino, lion, leopard, and buffalo. In addition to wildlife, Eastern Cape has big cat sanctuaries and is home to the rare white lion.
A US Dollar will be exchanged at the 3.17 rate for the Tunisian Dinar. Tunisia is an exciting place to visit because of its historical and archeological sites. However, it has a less developed tourism industry than Morocco or Egypt and is cheaper to visit. Tunis, the country’s capital, has beautiful UNESCO-listed medina and architecture from the French colonial period. Carthage has impressive ruins of the Phoenician city from the 6th century BCE and the ancient metropolis, another UNESCO World Heritage Site. Carthage and Sidi Bou Said are nearby charming seaside towns with Roman ruins and baths and picturesque white-blue houses.
A US Dollar can be exchanged at 3,989.47 in Colombia Pesos. Colombia has become a popular destination for adventure with Andean peaks, Amazonian jungles, and beautiful Caribbean coasts. Cartagena is a must-visit crown jewel of Colombia’s Caribbean coast, where you can venture through the centuries-old walled city and colonial architecture, now restored as restaurants and luxury hotels. Many go to Medellin, which has shed its dangerous reputation for innovation and charm. There are Colombian artist Fernando Botero’s sculptures, museums, and eateries. Colombia is known as the third largest producer of coffee beans, and there are tasting tours.
8. Costa Rica
A US Dollar can be exchanged for 526.50 Costa Rican Colón, making travel affordable for those visiting this country. Costa Rica has grown in popularity for expats and vacations as the place that most travelers confess they would visit repeatedly. Located in Central America, people praise the people, the weather, and the land filled with rain forests, volcanoes, beaches, drives, and a biodiverse wildlife paradise. They have incredible national parks to experience river rafting, cave tubing, and canyoning. Additionally, many see Costa Rica as a culinary destination shaped by Spanish, Caribbean, and indigenous influences.
Hungary’s identity has been shaped by its historical influences, including Ottoman invaders and Italian Renaissance designers who have provided romantic architecture, spring water thermal baths, the 3rd largest church in Europe, and beautiful scenery. The Hungarian capital, Budapest, is named for its two towns, Buda and Pest, which the winding Danube River splits. The city has tremendous beauty with cultural finds, is a foodie destination, and is considered a treasure trove. With a US Dollar being exchanged for 353.77 Hungarian Forint, travelers will experience a cost-benefit.
Peru is home to the Incas and the architectural World Heritage site, Machu Picchu, one of the Seven Wonders of the World. That, on its own, would be reason enough to visit the country. Peru’s landscape is diverse, with the exotic Amazon Rainforest and unique wildlife and indigenous tribal people in the east, the Andean Mountains divide the country, and pristine beaches. As it can source fresh ingredients, Peru boasts the best dishes in the world. The US Dollar will be exchanged for 3.74 Peruvian Sol, making Machu Picchu more affordable.
Based on the latest exchange rates, US Dollar equals 24,535.00 Vietnamese dongs, making a trip to Vietnam more affordable. Many praise their visit to Vietnam for its hidden charm and incredible beauty, including some of the best UNESCO World Heritage Sites, represented by Ha Long Bay, Phong Nha, and Hue Monuments. Besides its history and beautiful landscapes, people enjoy visiting Vietnam for its outstanding local cuisine, judging by countless rave reviews about authentic Vietnamese food and hospitality.
Japan has been on my bucket list for its unique people, culture, natural scenery, and incredible food. They have beautiful temples, Buddhist shrines, and zen gardens that are magical and peaceful. By many accounts, Tokyo is Japan’s most futuristic city known for its innovation. Japan is usually considered a more expensive country to travel to than others. The exchange rate of the US Dollar to 149.37 Japanese Yen is more favorable this year than it was a year ago, helping Americans to this country.
One US dollar has climbed to 30.65 Egyptian pounds, significantly higher than a year ago, making travel more affordable for Americans. Egypt is often called the largest open-air museum, as it is home to some of the richest cultural and architectural treasure troves on the planet. They include the Sphinx, the pyramids at Giza, Luxor, the Valley of the Kings, and the Nile. They have luxurious Red Sea resorts for water activities like snorkeling, diving, windsurfing, and camel riding in the desert.
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With a passion for investing and personal finance, I began The Cents of Money to help and teach others. My experience as an equity analyst, professor, and mom provide me with unique insights about money and wealth creation and a desire to share with you.