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Money and Costs

The Argentine peso is divided into one hundred centavos (cents), and its exchange rate has fluctuated at approximately three pesos to one dollar since late 2009. Paper notes are found in denominations of 2, 5, 10, 20, 50 and 100, while there are coins for 1 peso, as well as 1, 5, 10, 25 and 50 centavos. Small bills and change are usually in short supply so be prepared to receive a dirty look when attempting to break a 20 or higher – at times your business is turned away when the clerk decides not enough items are being purchased to warrant changing a larger bill. The peso can be slightly difficult to exchange outside of the nation unless you are near the border in Brazil, Paraguay, Bolivia or Uruguay, so attempt to get use as much as possible before leaving the country. Also do not expect to receive a fair exchange rate when changing money in these places. A reliable Web site to double-check exchange rates is


The IVA (Impuesto de Valor Agregado) is the 21 percent sales tax tacked onto the price displayed for most goods and services. It is added to everything except food and medicine. Because foreigners can get reimbursed for the tax on numerous purchases, though as a practical matter this is only done when large sums of money are spent due to the headache of the red tape, it is generally only hotels, car rentals and airfares, which tend to quote prices before the IVA.

Here are some related tips to help plan your trip to Argentina: Disabled Travelers, When to Go, Getting To and Away , Credit Cards, Argentina Facts, Travelers Checks, When to Go, Safety, Population of Argentina and Safety.

By Chris Hughes
Traveling South America to give Viva readers the most up-to-date information...
21 Oct 2009

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