Remaining Dollar Travel Bargains

I still need to get some other tidbits and pics from the Czech biking trip up here, but meanwhile, here’s a link to a story I was quoted in from last Friday’s USA Today. It was a short piece for Americans on how to deal with a travel dollar now worth diddly squat in Europe and on par with the Canadian dollar.

USA Today gets plenty of snide derision, and for good reasons, but week after week their travel section is better than most of the slop you read in U.S. newspapers these days. Plus they don’t hold back much from their website or make you register so they can bombard you with e-mails. (They’ll make you click through an ad sometimes to get to a different page though – the equivalent of sticking a billboard in the middle of the highway and making you drive through it.)

I appear side by side with the editor of Budget Travel magazine, Erik Torkells, so nice to see we’re on the same page. They have one of the best budget travel websites out there, so bookmark it if you haven’t already. The print magazine is quite useful too, and easier to read from a beach chair.

So where to go? We agreed on Mexico and Argentina, though with the caveat that you have to get off the beach resort tourist grid of the former. Right now I’m on a part-work, part-vacation trip to Acapulco and Zihuatanejo and in spots like those, things are a decent deal overall for those on a vacation budget – especially in the off season – but no screaming bargain. When it comes to cocktails and meals in a nice restaurant, you’ll pay close to what you would at home. Of course that definitely beats Western Europe, where you’ll pay double what you would at home.

For all of you reading from Europe, take advantage of your good fortune and get on a plane. If you ever wanted to travel the world, this is the best window you may see for years or decades. You have amazing purchasing power almost anywhere you go, so get out of town!

  1. Rainfield

    “Plus they don’t hold back much from their website or make you register so they can bombard you with e-mails.”
    actually, some do hold back their website or at least you have to register for their imformation..

  2. Brent

    Fantastic travel article, we are searching for good travel articles and we are offering prizes for original, quality articles, visit YTB World Travel and Vacation Blog for more information.

  3. roddick

    Tim can u give me the link of Erik Torkells budget travel websites ????

  4. tim

    Roddick – link is in the text above.

  5. Steve

    Tim –

    Thanks as always for your excellent blog. I wanted to ask about your opinion regarding the dollar falling like a rock. This really gets me down….here I am, working like a rat in a cage so that I can retire at 30 and travel 6-8 months per year, and it seems like what I’m earning is being lost before my paychecks/deposits come in! Here you mention that it is the best time ever for Europeans to travel…do you have reason to believe that the EURO will be declining (relative to US dollar) soon? I’d love to go to Europe, but right now it just seems foolish.

    Best, Steve

  6. tim

    I don’t see the dollar gaining against the euro until either 1) Americans suddenly start saving like crazy, 2) Interest rates go way up, 3) We get out of Iraq and reduce the deficit, or 4) We elect a new president.

    Since #4 is the most likely option (with #3 needing to follow), I’d put off that European trip for a while unless you’re heading to Eastern Europe’s countryside. Or you have someone to stay with. Frankly Asia and Latin America just offer a hugely better value for everyone right now.

  7. Travel Articles

    I agree with tim’s view that it is not good to be traveling to Europe right now.

    One can choose to go to Asia or South America to have the best value for your money as well as a refreshing adventure to far exotic places even though one has a small budget.

  8. Jim Smith

    Erik, I am writting a business travel book. Can you recommend a literary agent? Jim

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