Are 6 million of us daft?

By | Category: Travel rumblings

Perplexed © Dan Sperrin

Like Wallace who once had the wrong trousers, can it really be true that 1 in 10 people have taken the wrong currency on holiday with them? This is the claim from currency providers, ICE.

In a survey earlier this month amongst 2,000 people they found there was confusion amongst which countries had what currencies. In Europe, ICE suggests that people assumed that countries used the euro whereas the truth is that only 17 out of 28 countries used the currency the remainder retaining their own.

In some ways that might be understandable but ICE then suggests that people confuse Turkey with being in Europe and assume the euro applies to that country is well. Do people assume that or is this survey a means by which ICE can remind people of its services? The cynic in me suggests the latter.

But do I in 10 of us really take the wrong currency abroad? That would be about 6 million of us. But that figure includes those that make multiple journeys. Many people pop over to France or Spain a couple of times a year and they would know which currency to take. As would those who have holidayed in the same country before. So is it those holidaying in a country for the first time who make this error? And isn’t it the role of the travel agent to tell them what currency they should take?

Could it be something else? Is this just due to forgetfulness? Who doesn’t have a bag of coins from different countries at home? Couldn’t people have plucked the wrong bag? But who has a couple of hundred pounds worth of coins from different countries at home? Not me. I have 50p worth in zlotys; a couple of pounds worth of Swedish krone and a ten bob note from Tanganyika which shows how often I throw things away.

The answer must lie elsewhere.

Are there just some really, really silly people who confuse Austria with Australia, Georgia with the US state and India with Indonesia? Or people who assume you can use sterling anywhere in the world? Or is the survey dubious because can 6 million of us be that daft?

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