Eastern Europe, the EU and Euro
I'm thinking about planning another trip, and at the moment I'm just trying to rule things out and see what'll be feasible. I'll be on an extreme budget for this one (like, bread and Ramen type budget), but I'd like to be able to pull off a trip for a couple of months if possible.
Anyway, I'm looking into Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Slovenia, Croatia...maybe even Turkey. The problem (for me) is, quite a few of these countries are being initiated into the EU if they're not already there, and will be changing over to the Euro soon as a result. The very same Euro that sucked the life out of my bank account on my last trip to Ireland... the Euro I fear more than I would Nosferatu himself.
To me, part of the appeal of eastern/central Europe, aside from the culture and some of the "untouched" areas, was the fact that they were, well, cheaper. Until now. Just as I look into making my plans, they decide they want to up and join the union ...starting January 1st, 2007. If I have enough money, I'm sure I'd be leaving by early '07.
The naive question would be: Is this going to effect economies immediately... I mean, any chance I'd be able to sneak in and still get by using the old currency? Is it probable I'll be paying in blood like I did in Ireland?
And while I'm here (I know you're not travel agents -- sorry) if I were to try to visit four countries or so, including some of the ones I mentioned above, would anyone have a recommendation for how long the trip should be, or how much money bare minimum I'd need? A couple months, $3,000? I'm just trying to wrap my mind around what is possible here.
Sorry for all the questions... and thank you!
if you come to romania , be very careful. we are denominating the notes. the romanian goverment managed to stop the inflation, and this year the old notes and the new ones go together. for example 1 new Leu has the same value as 10.000 old lei. the notes look the same , they have the same aspect and colour.
I assumed since all these articles I'm reading said Bulgaria and Romania in particular were joining as of Jan 1st 07, that the Euro currency would be sure to follow and that things would be changing rapidly.
Thanks for clearing it up, and I appreciate the advice Andrei. I don't believe I'll be going to western Europe if my plan unfolds, so dollars and debit it is.
quote:Originally posted by michey_b:
What the lovely people in power of the EU are trying to do is to create a United States of Europe
This is true. A copy can never be as good as the original until you start to really inavate (look at for instance Asian car production). So the Euro will continue to be a less universal currency until the EU straightens itself out.
Many Eastern-European countries have Euro based currencies. For instance BiH and Bulgaria both have a currecny of 1=0.50â‚¬ and they stay at that rate--so you will have so impact there but it is nothing like Irelandly expensive.
here's a decent article about what it takes for the new EU members to be allowed to adopt the euro, and the estimated euro introduction dates for the countries. all subject to change, of course.
ie, just because someone might pay E5 for a coffee in Paris or Berlin does not mean that it will be typical of pricing througout the EU.
As indicated in other posts Eastern Europe will still be cheaper for the forseeable future and you will gain from less currency exchange loss in longer term as Euro does become more adopted, but meanwhile as Andrei indicates there will be local currency issues to be aware of.
Joes portly antipodean pal
He just wants my port and cherry ripes
Hint: try to accomodate to agroturistic pensions, NOT hotels.
"Where the hell is my goat?"
"It looked like it wanted outside!"
"Kill the American!"
Right up my alley
And yes, ATMs are indeed best. You can withdraw just one or two weeks worth of money at a time. The ATM rates are always optimum and you arenâ€™t stuck hoofing around Europe with huge sums of easily snatchable, irreplaceable wads of cash. Thereâ€™s usually a per-transaction fee (mine is $2), but I think this price is worth it for the worry-free convenience.
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