Canadian money has lost a lot of value in recent weeks. Since the CAD is directly linked to the value of oil and the price per barrel has plummeted since the end of 2014, cheap trips are more difficult to find for Canadians. The Euro and the USD are pretty much out of bounds, so…
Here are some places where Canadian money is actually worth more than before the fall in oil prices.
Cheap Trips: St. Petersburg, Russia
The value of the Russian currency is the one that has suffered the most in recent weeks. While Moscow was one of the most expensive cities in the world as little as last year, the ruble lost more than half of its value against the USD! The situation has changed somewhat, but the advantage of travelling there remains strong.
St. Petersburg is one of the most impressive historical cities in the world. Fans of Russian literature will find Dostoevsky, Brodsky, Nabokov, and Pushkin museums. St. Isaac’s Cathedral remains one of the most visited in the world, and its architecture is impressive.
Cheap Trips: The Prague castle
Cheap Trips: Prague, Czech Republic
The central bank of the Czech Republic is forcing the value of the Czech koruna down to combat inflation. A Canadian dollar today is worth almost 14% more Czech money than at the same time last year! If you needed more reasons to visit Prague, here is a new one.
Prague is a city where architecture, history, politics and beer meet constantly. Have a beer in a bar set in catacombs; eat a sausage and a piece of bread in one of the oldest squares in Europe; visit the largest ancient castle in the world, and in a city on top of that; then take a romantic walk on Charles Bridge.
Cheap Trips: Gabon
Gabon is part of the African Financial Community, which uses the XAF franc, also in use in Cameroon, The Central African Republic, Chad, the Republic of Congo and Equatorial Guinea. The value of this currency suffers a lot in the face of the CAD, to the point where a Canadian dollar is worth almost twice of what it was worth last year in XAF!
Of course, some of these countries are facing troubles. For example, the Government of Canada is asking its citizens to avoid any trip to the Republic of Congo, the Central African Republic, Chad and Guinea. Also, Canadian nationals are advised to pay close attention when traveling to Cameroon.
But Gabon is a destination in Africa that deserves to be considered. It’s a former French colony that kept French as the official language; its beaches, waterfalls and scuba diving are interesting tourist attractions; the national parks of this country are immense and interesting; Libreville is a real African city with all the change of scenery that it signifies.
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Cheap Trips: India
Listen, the value of the Canadian currency versus the Indian rupee is not better than it was before 2014, but it’s still the cheapest country in the world for travellers. Knock yourself out!
Cheap Trips: Oslo, Norway
Since Norway is an oil producing country, like Canada, the value of its money has plummeted in recent times. Since this is a very expensive place, this is probably the best time to go!
I repeat: Norway is one of the most expensive places in the world. But currency-wise, not much has changed.
In Oslo, the Maaemo and Ylajali restaurants are among the best in the world. Aren’t these two excellent reasons to go there?
Cheap Trips: Krakow, Poland
With a fluctuation of 16% in the last year, Poland finds itself in a similar situation as the Czech Republic, which means that pierogis and vodka are even more affordable this year.
Krakow is also one of the oldest cities in Europe. Its castle, the main square, its architecture and the old Jewish ghetto, now transformed into a charming hipster district, are some of its main strengths.
Cheap Trips: Belgrade, Serbia
The historical rapprochement between Russia and Serbia has the direct effect that Serbian money follows a curve similar to the Russian ruble, so the dinar plummets faster than the Canadian dollar.
Belgrade is one of the most underrated cities in all Europe. This is a place where the traveller who scratches the surface a little bit will be immediately rewarded. Its inhabitants, who may seem so cold at first, are actually very quick to allow you to integrate their group of friends and make you a cousin for life. The former capital of the former Yugoslavia wears its heart on its sleeve.
Cheap Trips: Morocco
Fes, Marrakesh, the Sahara Desert … the reasons to go to Morocco are unique. Tourists have visited in large numbers for a long time. Canadians can also go for less: a Canadian dollar is stronger here. Going to Morocco on a budget brings one closer to the beaches of Rabat and the medina of Tangier. Smoking a shisha and drinking a mint tea in Casablanca also has a certain charm!
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