Posted by: talljoe | September 6, 2011

Careful Spending

Since I’ve been in South America, I’ve found that the way I spend my money has changed.  In Argentina, one Argentine Peso is equal to approximately 24 cents.  I’ve noticed that I can stretch my dollars here while shopping.  Almost everything is cheap here.  You can buy a liter of milk for 95 centavos (about 23 cents).  Today I bought a box of crackers (similar to Saltines) for only 3 pesos (72 cents).  A one subject notebook (similar to Five Star) for 6.20 pesos ($1.47).  2 liters of bottled water cost me 2.30 pesos (54 cents).  In a bakery you can find a fancy sheet cake for only 29 pesos ($6.91).  Today I also bought approximately 1/3 of a pound of salami for only 8 pesos ($1.90).

However, not everything is cheap.  I bought a bag of Lays potato chips.  I bought the small bag which costs around 10 pesos ($2.38), but the large size bag that we have in the States costs a little over 22 pesos ($5.25).  A quart of ice cream can cost anywhere between 23 and 30 pesos ($5.48-7.15).

Despite the variance in price, I still find myself more conscientious about spending my money.  Perhaps it has to do with the numbers on the bills in my wallet.  For instance, I am very careful deciding how to spend a 100 pesos bill.  Although it is barely equal to $24, I still find myself setting it aside until I have nothing else to spend with.

I spent 70 pesos in the store today ($16).  It is the most I’ve spent in a store since I’ve been in Argentina.  Before today’s purchase, the highest was 30 pesos ($7.15).  It’s hard to spend above 30 pesos because I’m still not used to the change in the monetary system.  Looking at 30 pesos still feels like $30 US dollars for me, thus I am very picky as to how I spend it.

I wonder how this will change as the semester progresses…

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