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What currency to take

Otley, United...
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What currency to take

Calling Seychelles experts - please could you kindly advise on what currency to take to the Seychelles. I am getting very mixed advice from travel agents - mine says to take Euros but when I have just called to book some locally they told me not to take Euros but to take Dollars.

Also if someone could give me a loose guide on how much I would need?? I'm there for 3 weeks, first week half board Praslin, 2nd week La Digue B&B, 3rd week full borad Bird Island - we'd like to hire a car for a day or two maybe a diving trip and a boat trip. I was thinking approx £1500.00 spilt cash travellers cheques but any advice would be greatfully recieved.

Thanks in advance

Paula

Amsterdam
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1. Re: What currency to take

And

Do they accept Euro's in grocery stores?

We are going to spend a week on La Digue and I read we will be shopping at Gregories grocery store. Is it best to pay with Euro's or is it worth it to change Euro's to rupee's first (in the street) and than do the groceries?

Hobart, Australia
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2. Re: What currency to take

Euros definately over dollars. You'll get much better rates. The only place we saw usd advertised was to pay fee to use anse source a jean beach. They are taken but the prefer trade is euros. I think you'll find the amount you have in mind more than enough of course depending on how you like to travel and eat....we were there similar amount of time and spent under that amount...hope it helps..

Cape Elizabeth...
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for Portland, Antigua
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3. Re: What currency to take

I just returned on Friday from 17 days in the Seychelles and this currency question is a confusing (and annoying) issue.

The grocery stores, including Gregory's on La Digue, take only rupees. HOWEVER---this is not a big deal; if I were you I would just use the local ATM to get cash in rupees for this purpose. There are convenient ATMs on La Digue. At the major grocery stores on Mahe I used my credit card; this might also be possible at Praslin and La Digue, I just didn't have reason to try.

Don't take out more rupees than you need. Upon leaving the country, the official exchange places at the airport will not turn rupees back into euros (they WILL do so for a nominal amount....100 euros or less).

Whether or not you use local people to turn your euros into rupees is your call. It's illegal, but you will be approached to do so constantly. It's so ubiquitous I cannot imagine anyone is ever "caught".

Even the NATIONAL PARKS don't take rupees. It's mind-boggling. "What kind of a country doesn't take it's own currency?", I inquired of a park ranger. Don't bother asking.

The thing that was almost laughable is that at the national parks for example, they will take the same amount in dollars or euros. In other words, to get into a national marine park costs either 10 euros per person, or 10 US dollars per person. Since the dollar is worth so much less than the euro, it is obviously cheaper to pay in dollars if you happen to have them.

Most of my time was spent on a charter boat, so I was indeed only buying incidentals like groceries. But then I'd go into a restaurant, try to buy a beer, and they would only take euros or dollars! It was very frustrating. Before the boat charter, I spent 5 nights at a small hotel and the guy would ONLY take euros or dollars to settle the big bill for the hotel-nights---yet he billed me in rupees for my phone bill and my laundry. Go figure.

What all this points to is that the currency is collapsing. For this reason, I would be willing to bet that just about anyone you deal with will be happy to take safe, "hard" currencies, be they euros or dollars. Take whichever of these two on which you can get the best rate. U.S. dollars worked perfectly for me, but I will say that there are fewer Americans there than Europeans so euros are more common.

Los Angeles...
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4. Re: What currency to take

Hello Aerobicsqueen: Thanks for your posts. I'm headed to the Seychelles in September. I'm from the US so I'll tak Dollars and I'll loose in the exchange to Euros. If I may ask, what hotel did you stay at and on what island. I'm also going on a sailing charter but before I do, I'm going to stay on land a couple of days and wondered what island would be best. Also, did you have a favorite spot? What about your favorite restaurant? Thanks in advance for any advise you have for me. Cheers!

Cape Elizabeth...
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5. Re: What currency to take

Endlesstraveler, I wonder if your question might have been directed to me.....

The one, most important piece of advice I would give to a sailboat charterer is to be aware that the marine parks take ONLY euros or dollars. This is a VERY big deal, and Sunsail (in the U.S.A.) dropped the ball on this for us and it nearly cost us our vacation.

You don't say how many people are going to be on your boat. The CHEAPEST of the marine parks charge 10 dollars or 10 euros PER PERSON!!!! There are a few islands that charge (for their island tours) as much as 36 dollars or 36 euros per person. This is CASH only---no credit cards, no travelers' cheques. Be prepared to pay in cash, and they will absolutely not accept rupees. In addition, I suggest you bring your dollars or euros in smaller bills. Twice it happened that we owed only 20 dollars/20 euros (because there were only two of us and the charge was 10 per person) but had only a 50-euro bill and were told, "too bad, we have no change".

On top of this, in the marine parks you will also be charged "for the boat". It's not a rental fee...you can pick up one of their moorings, or drop your own anchor and the charge is the same. This is 50 rupees, and they take it in rupees not dollars or euros. Go figure.

And the whole thing is confusing anyway, so be prepared. For example, we spent three nights anchored off Anse Volbert (we sailed elsewhere each day, but the seas were rough and so we ended up back there each night ). We were quite sure we were not in the marine park, and on the first two nights we were not charged. On the third night, the rangers came around and told us we owed them the 50 rupees "for the boat anchoring". We could not figure out why, but weren't into questioning since we were worried they would then charge the dollars/euros and we were almost out of foreign currency. So we just gave them the 50 rupees and considered it a bargain.

--------------

For the cruise, my favourite places were Curieuse Island, Anse Lazio on Praslin, Felicite/Coco Marine Park, and La Digue.

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As to where to stay before your cruise:

We made a decision beforehand that once on the sailboat we'd be at Praslin, La Digue, etc and not on Mahe. So before we got on the boat, we stayed a week at Mahe and rented a car to tour.

We also made a decision to stay in a more "touristy" area on Mahe, and we don't regret that-----there is so very little ANYWHERE on Mahe that our "touristy" area turned out to just be a place with a couple of convenient restaurants.

We like very quiet places and we like to be on our own----not into "resorts". If you also like that kind of thing, I can recommend the little place we stayed called Le Pti Payot. This is three cottages on a hillside less than two minutes walk to the lovely beach down the hill (Beau Vallon).

For the extremely reasonable price of about U.S.$120/night, we had a bedroom with ceiling fan, spacious bathroom, small lounge, well-appointed kitchen, and large terrace. Although we had a car, the place is on the bus line, and also only about a ten minute walk from the grocery store---so it could qualify as a real budget place if one wanted. We mostly ate out (for dinner) and there were reasonably priced places close by.

After the boat, we stayed at The Wharf. If price is no object, DO stay at this place!!!! We absolutely adored it. We have been all over the world and this (small) hotel ranks among the best-----the staff was perfect, the room was hedonistically comfy, the bathroom beautiful, the pool someplace beyond perfection.

Hobart, Australia
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6. Re: What currency to take

Yes agree cessnapilot..it seems anything that is for tourism is quoted in euros or usd and local services and items in the local rupee....even though it is frowned upon changing the currency locally the convenience of not changing too much out weighed the approach through currency change office. It was so strange the system of changing money but very open and free on the matter especially on praslin and la digue.

Otley, United...
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7. Re: What currency to take

cessnapilot.

Hi there - I always find it amazing how one place can provoke such diffeent experiences to different people. We had dinner only at the Wharfe on Mahe and found the staff to be the rudest I encountered anywhere in the Seychelles and the food just dreadful.

I only took dollars to the Seychelles - only becausd our travel agancy had run out of Euros but had no problem with them at all - just changed them in the shops if I needed Rupees. Hotel gave us 5.5SR per $1 the shops 9SR per $1 so you can almost double your money - I didn't realise this was illegal - just frowned upon??

Hobart, Australia
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8. Re: What currency to take

aerobics queen...did you end up going to all the islands you originally planned? How did you find it?

9. Re: What currency to take

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