The name Greece conjures up fond impressions that cut across the historical, intellectual, and artistic. We can imagine Socrates walking barefoot on the streets and suburbs of Athens, holding engaging in philosophical discussions in the Agora, or drinking hemlock in an Athenian prison. We’d also love to see places described in the Illiad and Odyssey—some of the greatest productions in the history of poetry. The beautiful, fairy-tale islands that dot the Augean Sea on one hand—and the Ionian Coast on the other, would all serve as an escape from the jarring humdrum of life and from the boredom of the ordinary. These—and more—are the reasons Greece is the number one travel destination in Europe, with many awesome things to do.

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Yet Greek economy and currency have often been wild, rough, and turbulent. To help perplexed travelers, we reveal here what everyone should know about USD to Euro conversion in Greece.

What You Need To Know About Currency In Greece

The official currency in Greece is the Euro. This has been the case since 28 February 2002. Before this time, the official currency in Greece was the drachma, one of the oldest currencies on the planet—having been in use since about the mid-6th century BC. In the Greek language, Drachma means “to grasp.” Today, Drachma is completely out of use. Since 2012, Greek banks even stopped receiving Drachma notes in exchange for Euro notes. The currency code for the Euro is EUR. Knowing the currency code is important when buying foreign currency. They eliminate confusion that comes about as a result of currency names that cut across several countries. For example, the dollar is a currency name that can apply to the United States, Australia, Canada, or even Liberia. The symbol for the Euro is €. This is what travelers will find on the price tags in the shops, supermarkets, and malls—all over Greece.

The Euro is made up of 100 cents. However, Euro cents come in coins of 50, 20, 10, 5, 2, and even one cent. A Euro cent is known in Greece as “lepto.” On the flip side, Euros also come in the form of crisp banknotes. These start from 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, and 500. Make no mistake. While one may be tempted to carry only banknotes, the cents sometimes come in handy when making single-item purchases like bottled water. A 250ml bottled water in Athens will cost about 25-30 cents.

Related: Top 10 Delicacies To Sample In Greece

What You Need To Know About USD-Euro Conversion In Greece

Currently, one USD can be exchanged for 0.95 Euros. Looked at differently, it means one Euro equals 1.05 USD. In the month of May 2022, the exchange rate hovered between 1.038USD for one Euro—to 1.076USD for one Euro. For travelers, this is just about an equal exchange rate of 1USD to 1EUR. Indeed, analysts expect the two rates to completely equalize by around July 2022. Generally, the Euro has been in a free fall when compared to the USD. Around July 2008, 1EUR equaled 1.6USD—the highest point it has ever reached since it was first introduced as a currency in 1999.

The Euro has always risen and fallen in the past. However, the recent slump is associated with the War in Ukraine. The conflict has precipitated an energy crisis in much of Western Europe as several countries have stopped buying gas and oil from Russia. In the face of this uncertainty, many investors have turned to the USD—as offering relative stability. This has caused the USD to strengthen. While this is bad news for the local Greek economy, for American holidaymakers—there might never be a financially better time to travel to Greece and to the rest of the Mediterranean coast. Of course, this sounds like benefiting from another’s misfortune. But like Bill Gates would say, “Life is not always fair. Deal with it.” For those who want to travel on a budget to Greece, this could just be a perfect time.

Still, exchange rates can be very fluid. Those who’re planning a trip should consistently check out the daily movements. Typically, the exchange rates travelers get are slightly less favorable than the real exchange rates listed on several online sites. So this is also something to keep in mind. For exchanging currency, currency exchange shops offer some of the best rates. These include Eurochange, Intel Express, or Kapachange. Of course, one can exchange currency at the airport or even at the hotel. However, while these places might be convenient, they’re also a tad costlier. And if one must use an ATM, perhaps for an emergency, it’s better to choose the option of being charged fees in the local currency—and not the home currency.

Related: Athens, Greece: Your Essential Weekend Itinerary

Where Are Eurochange Shops In Athens Where A Traveler Can Change Currency? One is on Karagiorgi Servias Str. 4, 10562, Tel (+30) 210 3242879. Another is on 1 Areos Street, Monastiraki Square (+30 210 3222 657).

Finally, a good option for travelers is to get in touch with their bank—before traveling. They may have standing arrangements with Greek banks which may translate to cheaper rates. Greece is a dream travel destination whose fame has rolled over many eventful centuries. Staying aware of currency issues and exchange rates—may turn a frustrating trip into an adventure.