Buy U.S. Dollars When The Exchange Rate is Favorable

by Pam on September 22, 2009

buy U.S. dollars in advance instead of last minuteI recently decided to follow the exchange rate between the Canadian and U.S. dollar as we are planning to use some U.S. funds in the near future.  As it turns out, it happens to be a great time to buy U.S. dollars since the Canadian dollar is hovering at around 93 cents right now.  I have been checking the exchange rate periodically throughout each day and have noticed that it fluctuates frequently.  As well, since I began monitoring it on September 3rd, the Canadian dollar has gone from just over 90 cents to almost 94 cents.

I highly recommend setting up a U.S. dollar account through your financial institution if you haven’t already done so as it makes it much easier to take advantage of favorable exchange rates.  I suggest opening an account that allows you to buy and sell U.S. dollars through your online banking so you don’t have to visit your bank every time you want to transfer money to your U.S. account and vice versa.

Some people also make tax-free money by buying some U.S. dollars when the dollar is low and selling when it is high. All you need is some spare money and a lot of patience.  You can do this by exchanging other currencies as well.

Rather than buying U.S. funds last minute before you go on a trip, why not check the exchange rates every once in a while and buy the U.S. dollars in advance?  You will save a lot of money and it won’t take a lot of your time.

I check the exchange rate right on my online banking so I know exactly how much I would be getting for my Canadian dollars if I choose to complete the transfer.  If you don’t have access to online banking, you can also check the exchange rates online.   You need to note, however, that just because the site tells you a certain exchange rate, it doesn’t mean your financial institution’s rate will be exactly the same.  In other words, most banks and financial institutions charge a service fee or a commission so your exchange rate will be a slightly less than what you see.  That’s why I prefer to go directly to the source, my financial institution’s online banking, so I know exactly what to expect.  The best part is, if I don’t like the exchange rate at the time I can easily cancel the transaction.

So, if you think you will be needing U.S. funds in the future, rather than waiting until the last minute, and taking whatever exchange rate you can get, consider buying U.S. funds in advance so you can make your money go further.

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