French Grammar For Dummies
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Traveling is expensive, so it's crucial to have a good understanding of French phrases for money and banking. While in a French-speaking country, the best way to ensure that you get the most for your money is to be familiar with these common financial terms.

argent [m] (money)
banque [f] (bank)
taux de change comptant (exchange rate)
mandat télégraphique (wire transfer)
chèques de voyage (traveler's checks)

Each country has its own monetary system. France uses the euro, but some other French-speaking countries use a different currency system. Economically, it is almost always best to exchange your American dollars for the local currency. In fact, exchanging money is the most common banking need for travelers.

In the following conversation, a traveler exchanges his American money for euros.

Jane: Quel est le taux de change aujourd’hui? (What is the exchange rate today?)
Banker: Le taux de change du jour est un euro pour un dollar vingt-trois. (Today’s exchange rate is 1 euro for $1.23.)
Jane: Je voudrais échanger cent dollars. (I would like to exchange $100.)

The following phrases will give you a guideline to follow when forming your own questions about other banking needs while in a French-speaking country.

  • *Je voudrais acheter des chèques de voyage. (I would like to buy traveler’s checks.)

  • Je voudrais de la monnaie en échange de ce billet. (I would like to make change for this bill.)

  • Comment ouvre-t-on un compte courant? (How do I open a checking account?)

  • Avez-vous des agences en Italie? (Do you have any branches in Italy?)

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