Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Money and Practical Matters

The exchange rate has hovered between 10.4 and 10.7 pesos to the US dollar since we arrived last August. Usually we get pesos from one of many ATMs, using our debit card. Most transactions, like rent, are paid with cash, although credit cards are accepted at many places, including large grocery stores.

We are both retired and have medical coverage for ourselves and the kids through our former employers. Medical care here is generally very good. We haven't looked into whether our insurance will pay for hospitals or doctors here. Hopefully, we won't need to. We have needed antibiotics a couple of times. One bottle of pills cost $9 and the other cost $2; prescriptions were not necessary.

Banking and bill paying is done online and we don't even need to look at our snail mail. We have a friend at home who gathers it up and throws it in a box. Our townhouse is rented and the tenants have deposit slips, so money just appears in the bank. It is like magic!

Restaurants are reasonable, not dirt cheap but cheaper than Juneau by far. A typical meal, say, chiles rellenos, will cost about $6 a plate at an average restaurant. Shrimp is about $9. Another few bucks for drinks and a tip add up to about $30-$35 for Dave, Ray and I to go out for a meal. Taco stands are cheaper and, of course, there are very expensive, elegant restaurants if you want to spend more. Even when we go to the pool or the beach, we end up spending about $25 for drinks and snacks for the three of us.


kim said...
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kim said...

Very colourful money...reminds me of Canadian dollars ....well, the old style, anyways...