The amount of spending money needed for an Xperitas Language Program participant varies from student to student. Some students are very careful with their money and get by with less, while others spend it quickly and need more. Xperitas recommends about $40-$50 a day for meals and incidentals (outside of the family stay). Please keep in mind that if you plan to buy a lot of souvenirs or gifts, eat in the finest restaurants, or spend money on stamps, postcards, snacks, etc., more may be necessary.
Xperitas recommends bringing debit or credit cards for cash access. Please check with your bank or credit card company before you leave regarding possible limits and/or other service charges. Using a debit or credit card will probably offer the best exchange rates, as well as more flexibility considering many countries’ limited banking hours. Make sure you know your 4-digit PIN number in numerical form. The ATM machines abroad may not have the alphabet on the keys.
Traveler’s checks have become increasingly difficult to cash in the last few years. Xperitas does not recommend utilizing traveler’s checks as you may encounter tremendous difficulty in cashing them.
Is your student ready to manage money while abroad and to use the currency of the destination country?
Have your teen traveler do some online research. The Lonely Planet website has great planning resources, including currency and budgeting guidelines, for all of our destinations. Have your travelers try to find the answers to these questions:
What is the currency used in your destination country?
What is the exchange rate between U.S. dollars and the local currency?
Will you be able to use a debit/credit card in your destination country? Do you need a “chip and pin” card?
What will you plan to budget for food, bottled water and other necessities? (Check your itinerary to see which meals are included in the program price. All meals are provided during the family stay.)
What is your planned budget for gifts and souvenirs to bring home?
Here are a couple of additional ideas for you and your traveling teen to get a handle on money:
Plan your budgeting for the program. Use the attached Budget Worksheet to help you discuss your planned and un-planned expenses.
Are there any questions you have left over after your research? Talk to your teacher, group leader, travel mates or Xperitas to ask where you might find answers for the questions you still have!