How to exchange money in Buenos Aires

The most important thing you should now:

Due the rules of our economy, my experience in the "real life" as a private tour guide Buenos Airesis that US$ currency is really hard to obtain in Argentina and Buenos Aires and usd cash is highly appreciated, mostly the notes 100's which must be in good conditions due to many times are used to save money. Drawned or stained notes could be difficult to use and many time the price of them is lower. For tips, the 5 ones are always welcomed (of course!). I strongly suggest you to visit us with USD currency in cash. You can be lucky with your 50's and 20's notes but the worst are the notes of 10's. Your main budget should come in big new crispy notes of 100.

If you are going to exchange, you will always do a better deal in Buenos Aires than in the countryside.

The nice good News is that you can get very convenient rates for many activities and products compared to international prices. By example a very tasty beek well joined by a Malbec wine at a nice restaurant would be bellow usd 30 (all included). You will be in a World Class city spending a few bucks.

Selling your dollars

In Argentina, Buenos Aires included, for exchange money, as in banks as in exchange houses, they will ask you the passport,
the original one and a focotocopy. As your private tour guide in Buenos Aires, I strongly recommend you to do your banking operation close to the hotel in order to return back and leave there the passport. The schedule of the exchange offices is from 10 am till 6 pm, always from Monday to Friday. Usually houses that open on weekend do not pay the better rate.
safe money exchange in buenos aires by private guide in buenos aires
At the Airport, you can exchange at a fair rate in the rate of the official price at BANCO de la NACION, there are branches in each terminal. There are another banks at the airport, also with blue branding, so my Friends, again, I'm suggesting to go to the official Bank, the BANCO DE LA NACION. You can see here the logo of one I'm suggesting. There are also Atm's for use, but assume they could be lack of currency and they charge a fee of around usd 4 per extraction.

On Weekends there are a couple of places where you can exchange, but they will not bring you always the best rate, but they are whole the weekend open.

Here goes the list of Metropolis's Offices (remember, I'm only suggesting them for weekend, when the others are closed)

Recoleta, Quintana Av 570, phone 4806-0020
Downtown, Florida st 334, phone 5199-0844/45
Retiro, Pacific Galleries, Florida st 737, phone 5555-5162
Palermo, Alto Palermo Shopping, Santa Fe Av 3253, phone 5777-8182
San Telmo, Montevideo Cambio y Turismo,  Defensa St 1057  phone 4326-1998

Get in mind you also can exchange in an ATM, they will charge you around US$ 4 whatever amount you take and it is so much faster than the line at the exchange office. To use an ATM in San Telmo on Sunday is just impossible, take that in mind, many purchases in that area will be in cash.

Something that you will never be able to do is to get US$ currency from an ATM, it doesn't matter if your bank account is originally in US$, it will authomatically driven into pesos. So, I'm meaning you will never get dollars in Argentina. Bring cash in USD with you.

About Dollar Blue:

There is a big parallel market for exchange, which named "blue market" and the price of the usd cash is named "dollar blue". This is not a legal option and I'm not suggesting to operate there, I'm just delivering the information of its existence, and I do not operate in that business for obvious reasons, it's up to you where are you going to exchange your currency. The information I'm bringing here is taken for public information available online in standard newspapers.

As you can see bellow, the difference on the impact of your holiday's budget would be for your holidays due to currently the gap between the two exchange rates is over 90%.

Exchange: US$ 1 = $arg 238,
                   Blue Market US$ 1 = $arg
473 (Yes that's a big gap, this price always for 100's notes)
                        € 1 = $arg 535,
(Blue price)

Buying your dollars back:

VERY IMPORTANT: You will never be able to buy more than usd 200 in the official market per month, and probably can't even get that amount back. Please be careful and try to manage how many usd you are selling in order to not end overstocked of Argentinean pesos.


- You can exchange in many places like banks, exchange houses, Atm's (no dollars from them only pesos).
- The Atm's charges around usd 4 extraction and you may be required to do many extractions.
- There is a parallel market which is not legal and it is called blue market (you attend to a "cave" and you operate with "blue dollars").
- Notes of 100's are better paid than lower notes.

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