Tip of the month: Bring a big wallet

When you get to The Gambia, you have a lot to see, and your eyes are everywhere, but one of the first things you will have to do is change your money. The currency of The Gambia is Gambian dalasi. One euro is about 60 dalasis at this time. You get around 51 dalasis for one dollar and 70 dalasis for a British pound.
When you get the exchanged your money, you feel like you are rich, enough to put your money in a suitcase. You will get a lot of money. If you are lucky, they give you 200 dalasis notes. But if they give you 100 dalasis notes or even 50… you will not know what to do with the money. So, bring a big wallet with you; it will come in handy.
It is also good to bring two wallets with you, so you can use one for keeping the money safe at a hotel and one for wandering around. The money exchange can get you confused. You don’t have control over how much you are spending. So, that’s why I like to arrange my money.
When I went to exchange money, I first put it in my big wallet. And you don’t have to change all your money at once. Money Exchange offices are all around and are not hard to find. But be sure to google the currency value before going; you don’t want to get cheated. And count your money when you get it to make sure the amount is correct.
When I got the dalasis, I would organize it. I would fold 600 dalasi, which is about ten euros altogether. Then I would place the folded money together till I reached 100 € of value. I would place it in my wallet, secured by an elastic. I would make as many hundreds as I had at a time. This way, I can visualize how much is 10 € and how much is 100 € and better control my money. This wallet would always stay at home. I would use another wallet to just take a small amount of the money, for example, 20 euros and have it with me. That way, I always know how much I’m spending without calculating it all the time.
So, when you are looking at your money in the main wallet, you can see it in euro/dollar/British pound/other currency and just take what you need to put in your second wallet, which is with you. You can look at your money as dalasis, pay for what you want, and never spend more than you intended.
As for how much things cost here, it depends on you. You have to bargain for some things, so the price can depend on you and how much you are willing to pay for it. Sometimes, it is good to keep in mind that you support the local businesses by buying from them. Things like bread you can buy for a really low price from a local shop or you can have a fresh croissant from the bakery for a bit higher price. The same goes for restaurants and pubs, all the shops and the markets. It all depends on how you want to spend your trip and how much money you are willing to spend.

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