With the Canadian dollar continually hitting record new lows, I am beginning to hesitate whether it is completely worthwhile to make a major trip to the United States at the moment. Personally, when the Canadian dollar was much stronger than the USD, I exchanged as much CDN for USD as I could to load up while I could. Just in case the Canadian comes crashing down, like it has. Now is really the time to exchange USD to Canadian.
So let’s take a look at the situation in two fold. For Americans coming to Canada, it is actually an amazing time to visit. You will easily get 20% or more in value for every $1 USD converted to Canadian. If you have been thinking about a trip to Canada, now is a good a time as any for that trip!
As for Canadians going to the US, that is a different story. Unfortunately, even though I may have exchanged CDN for USD at a favourable time, most expenses of a major trip will be paid with a credit card. I can’t pay for everything in cash.
Normally, the Chase Amazon Visa and the Chase Marriott Rewards Premier Visa are outstanding choices of credit cards to use in the United States, because its foreign transaction fees are waived. But with CDN so low, the 2.5% waived fee barely makes a dent anyway.
This makes the Canadian based US credit cards way more valuable. The challenge with having one of these credit cards is that you have to have US currency to pay the balance. So if you don’t already have USD, you will lose out on the conversion anyway when you do the exchange.
Unfortunately Canadians are in a rough spot right now. We will just have to ride out the storm.