Australian Dollar

Old Apr 7, 11, 3:47 am
  #31  
 
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In the US I always feel bitten by the add-ons: virtually compulsory tips and gratuities, taxes on hotel rooms, sales tax on goods and so on. All of these things can add a lot to the written price for the unwary visitor.

I do think that Sydney is quite an expensive city, with the other large state capitals not far behind. The cost of eating out in Australia has (I think) risen a lot in real terms in the past ten years or so. Lots of consumer goods are expensive (for instance, things one buys at the chemist are a lot more than in many other similar countries, I find).

But as noted above, Australia's selling point as a tourist destination has never been that it is cheap, since there have always been places that are far cheaper.
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Old Apr 7, 11, 4:51 am
  #32  
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Originally Posted by CPMaverick View Post
Carmel is notoriously expensive... I don't see that as a logical comparison point. Yes, I've been there, it's nice, but it is very high end.
So are the places in Australia that are being compared ... Sydney and Melbourne routinely place in lists of top 10 tourist destinations in the world, and depending on the list Australia has up to 50% of the world's iconic tourist destinations (things like Uluru and GBR). So comparing to Carmel is representative. There are cheap places in Australia too, lots of them, but US tourists don't go there. Instead they go to the expensive parts (making them more expensive ... certainly the rise in hotel room rates in Australia is entirely due to rising demand and highest occupancy rates in the world). US has similarly high priced tourist attractions (I was just looking at an inn in upstate NY that charges $20,000 per night if you rent all 3 of their rooms), or just look at any of the US State park grand lodges such as Yosemite ... $500 per person per day is typical if you can get a reservation. What Australia doesn't have are low-end cheap and sleazy motels and restaurants -- not entirely a bad thing, the worst place will still have reasonable quality, while some US motels are uninhabitable.

Want a bargain? Go to Queensland now, lots of half-price deals after the flood and cyclone disasters which have generated bad press and kept tourists away. But that is more like the anti-Carmel (Brisbane is nice enough, but it is no Sydney or Melbourne ).
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Old Apr 7, 11, 6:03 am
  #33  
 
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Originally Posted by SFSC View Post
A steep fall in the AUD can be anticipated anytime soon.
Depends on your definition of "soon" -- I don't see it happening until world demand for Australia's resources collapses, and that's not going to happen until the Chinese and Indian economies simultaneously implode. (China, possibly; India, not for a while.) The US Fed's "quantitative easing" policy alone ensures continual downward pressure on the greenback for another few years at least.
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Old Apr 8, 11, 9:57 pm
  #34  
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Originally Posted by number_6 View Post
So are the places in Australia that are being compared ... Sydney and Melbourne
Wrong; you specifically compared Carmel as a small town location. As I already stated, I was not comparing only 'big city' Australia, I have recently (within 18 months) stayed at nearly a dozen small and medium size towns in Australia, West and East coast, and they are NOT NOT NOT comparable in price to similar places in the US.

As for big cities, Australia is STILL significantly (~20%) more expensive, comparing my experience in Melbourne and Sydney to LA and Chicago.

You keep twisting the argument around so I don't see a need to continue the discussion, the above says all I need to say.
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Old Apr 9, 11, 1:17 am
  #35  
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Originally Posted by CPMaverick View Post
Wrong; you specifically compared Carmel as a small town location. As I already stated, I was not comparing only 'big city' Australia, I have recently (within 18 months) stayed at nearly a dozen small and medium size towns in Australia, West and East coast, and they are NOT NOT NOT comparable in price to similar places in the US.

As for big cities, Australia is STILL significantly (~20%) more expensive, comparing my experience in Melbourne and Sydney to LA and Chicago.

You keep twisting the argument around so I don't see a need to continue the discussion, the above says all I need to say.
Australia is more expensive than most parts of the world. Certainly I would say that London is a cheaper city to live in than Sydney is these days. Frankly it's absurd, because Sydney is neither New York or London. It's a mid size city on the periphery of the world. Not that I'm complaining, I think it still has an incredibly high quality of life.

Australia is certainly more expensive to live in than the US. Anyone who doesn't think that is having a "let them eat cake moment".
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Old Apr 10, 11, 4:18 pm
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Originally Posted by bensyd View Post
Australia is more expensive than most parts of the world. Certainly I would say that London is a cheaper city to live in than Sydney is these days. Frankly it's absurd, because Sydney is neither New York or London. It's a mid size city on the periphery of the world. Not that I'm complaining, I think it still has an incredibly high quality of life.

Australia is certainly more expensive to live in than the US. Anyone who doesn't think that is having a "let them eat cake moment".
I agree - having lived in NY and London, Sydney is a far more expensive place to live these days. As an example - basic food in Australia is far more expensive. E.g. a packet of chips (or crisps - not that I eat them often but I do find them horrendously expensive here) - London 30p, New York 50c, Sydney $2.00 - how did that happen ? Can of coke - London 75p, New York $1, Sydney $2 .... I could go on ....

Eating out on the other hand can be quite cheap if you know where to go and when !
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Old May 3, 11, 8:43 am
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Broke $1.10 USD per $1 AUD yesterday
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Old May 3, 11, 4:11 pm
  #38  
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As predicted in post #7 of this thread. Current outlook is to top out at 1.15 at most, so it has basically peaked and will drift down towards parity for the rest of 2011.

Despite the exchange rate, there are some bargains for travel to Oz; some of the Queensland resorts, for example. Shop around and it is still affordable and good value, just not in Sydney for NYE
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Old May 3, 11, 7:21 pm
  #39  
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Originally Posted by number_6 View Post
As predicted in post #7 of this thread. Current outlook is to top out at 1.15 at most, so it has basically peaked and will drift down towards parity for the rest of 2011.

Despite the exchange rate, there are some bargains for travel to Oz; some of the Queensland resorts, for example. Shop around and it is still affordable and good value, just not in Sydney for NYE
Jim Rogers called $1.40 for the Aussie. If that happens I fear we won't have much of an economy left.
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Old Jul 26, 11, 7:38 pm
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AUD back over $1.1 USD ... and the NZD has gone through the roof (vs USD) too at $.87 USD
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Old Jul 27, 11, 4:46 am
  #41  
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Originally Posted by bensyd View Post
Jim Rogers called $1.40 for the Aussie. If that happens I fear we won't have much of an economy left.
The current forecast is $1.50 by ye 2012 ... for those who have an interest in currency speculation
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Old Jul 27, 11, 7:08 am
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Most predictions in this thread suggest that Flyertalkers would be better advised to sticking to mileage run advice.
Come to think of it most predictions this year by Financial Analysts suggest that they would be better advised to sticking to mileage run advice.
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Old Jul 27, 11, 11:13 pm
  #43  
 
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Originally Posted by bensyd View Post
Jim Rogers called $1.40 for the Aussie. If that happens I fear we won't have much of an economy left.
I don't see that happening, though any "weakening" of the Australian Dollar against the USD will be as a result of the Reserve Bank lowering interest rates (although the next move, in a week or so, is expected to be up); and not due to the USD getting stronger against the AUD.

And even if AUD reached the predicted $1.40 or higher, it would likely be because the USD is tanking and not because the AUD itself is appreciating. And while that will impact the small exporters and hit retail, the hit on tourism in itself might not be that drastic. No doubt we'll feel the pinch from the lack of American tourists heading this way, but it need not be all doom and gloom.

Looking back at the other traded currencies, AUD's rise against GBP, EUR and NZD hasn't been as prolific as against the USD; further evidence that while the AUD is appreciating, more impact is from the fact that the USD is tanking like its nobody's business.
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Old Jul 28, 11, 4:19 am
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Originally Posted by SQ421 View Post
Looking back at the other traded currencies, AUD's rise against GBP, EUR and NZD hasn't been as prolific as against the USD; further evidence that while the AUD is appreciating, more impact is from the fact that the USD is tanking like its nobody's business.
this seems to be the key and is very frustrating for me at present, since the funds I've set aside for my upcoming trip to Australia are in USD (as I received them for consulting in the Middle East in USD) even though I now work in the UK and am otherwise paid in GBP. If only the dimwits in Washington would realize that this game of chicken they're playing with the debt ceiling is going to crash the US economy.
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Old Aug 2, 11, 5:39 pm
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The interest rates are on hold (and the US isn't defaulting, yet) which should arrest the rise that was headed beyond US$ 1.10 in the near term.

In fact, in the last 24 hours, the AUD has moved down from 1.10 to 1.07

I don't expect it to move below parity anytime soon though.
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