Thursday, December 04, 2008

No hay cambio

Getting change in Buenos Aires often is a hectic procedure. An article from one of my favorite news sources, Slate online magazine, discusses the issue, noting that there seems to be a shortage of coins, particularly one-peso coins, or monedas. It´s also quite difficult to get a five-peso note.

Some examples:

I dropped my laundry off for washing today. It costs 15 pesos. Unfortunately, I only had a hundred-peso note (since I´m getting charged $2.50 every time I take out cash, I take out several hundred pesos a go. ATMs here do distribute 10s and 20s, so i´ll usually take out something like 490 pesos.) Of course there was no change, but he said I could pay later. Eventually, I tracked down a 50 and five 10s. Even still, he didn´t have a five to give me as change. Hopefully I can get some change when I pay for my Internet time.

I bought some clothes the other day. The total was about 55 pesos, and I presented another hundie. It took the woman several minutes to track down the correct change.

Lastly, I have a pocket of five- and 10-centavo coins because 25 and 50 coins also are relatively hard to come by.

The article really nails the situation on the head, and offers some explanations. It´s a very interesting read.

Now can anyone break my 50?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

what? no debit card? =)