I often get questions from our travelers about the Blue Market Dollar Rate in Argentina and thought it would be a good idea to write about it for those trying to get the best bang for their buck so to speak while traveling in Argentina.
In Argentina there 3 official exchange rates:
1) The real estate rate (not important for travelers)
2) The Official bank exchange rate (around 1 USD to approx 9 Argentine Pesos)
3) The Blue Market rate (around 1 USD approx 14 ARS)
Travelers will of course only get the official rate at ATMs in Argentina and if they exchange money in the banks. The best way to take advantage of the Blue Market Rate is by bringing US cash ($20, $50 and/or $100 notes) and exchanging money at your hotels. Almost all hotels will gladly exchange your US cash at a much higher rate than what the banks will offer as everyone is eager to get US bills (Cristina de Kirchner, the current Argentine president, outlawed US dollars to be given to Argentine citizens by Argentine banks during her last term- this used to be a common practice in Argentina because the US Dollar is a more stable and stronger currency than the Argentine Peso so people often used to withdraw their money in US Dollars). When bringing US currency to Argentina the most important thing to do is make sure that all notes are clean, crisp and new (go to your US bank and ask specifically for these types of notes from the teller); any bills with tears, or that are dirty, will not be accepted in Argentina.
Have more questions about traveling to Argentina? Feel free to contact me!
Saludos from your friendly South America Program Director,