Converting Money: My experience

I did a thing on May 7th. If you follow me on my personal social media pages, you’d have seen me proudly post a picture of some currency I had converted. I did this three months before I leave for a couple reasons.

  • I just couldn’t wait to have it in my hands.
    • This is something I’ve been wanting to do for a while.
    • I can now say I’ve held my first ACTUAL foreign currency
  • It was a way for me to stop myself from spending it
    • I don’t actually trust myself not to spend the money I have in Canadian currency while it’s in my bank account.

I have a habit of saying “Oh, there’s lots of money in my account. It won’t matter if I spend a bit. I’ll make it up later” and then later arrives and I can’t figure out how I got so carried away. It’s something I’ve tried to hold myself accountable with, and it’s been to no avail. In order to nip this in the bud for Japan, to make sure that I have enough yen (JPY) to make this trip comfortably, I decided that I wasn’t going to risk it. I went and got the bulk of my money converted so it’ll take extra effort to actually go spend it, and I’m counting on my lazy nature to prevent that. I call this being proactive.

All said and done, I walked into the bank with CAD $1,400 in my bank account. It cost me CAD $1,429.71 and I walked out with JPY 117,000. As of May 7th, 1 Canadian Dollar was worth roughly 84 Japanese Yen. Combined with the JPY 30,000 I’d picked up previously, this makes a total of JPY 147,000 total that I immediately when home and stuck in my travel wallet along with my passport.

I’d like to show you what this looks like.

147000 JPY

Overall this really doesn’t seem like a lot of money when laid out.

I’ve got several 10,000 notes, a few 5,000 notes, and a 2,000 note. According to those who I’ve been talking to in various travel groups I belong to on social media, as well as friends of mine who’ve gone before me, the 2000 note is an uncommon form of currency.  The closest resemblance to one of our bills as far as value is a $20 bill, but for some reason, they never actually caught on in Japan. I’m going to see if I can get my hands on a couple more and I’m going to see about starting a “foreign currency” collection.

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