Wednesday, September 19, 2012,
Taiwanese people use the New Taiwanese Dollar (NTD). The current exchange rate is 29.35 NTD for every 1 USD. Unlike how the Euro and Yen uses a different symbol, people in Taiwan often use the same as people in the United States, the "$" sign. So, often times seeing a $100 hamburger at McDonald's is startling, although in truth it is around $3 USD. However, they also use this symbol "元" frequently. It is difficult at first to become accustomed to how much each price is worth in USD, but after my time here I've come to realize the easiest way for me to convert amounts. While in Taiwan, I haven't converted USD to NTD often at all, only to explain how much a MacBook Pro costs in the United States, or something like that, because I've heard it is a lot cheaper. Converting NTD to USD is far more useful because NTD is what all of the prices are in! There isn't a good, easy, and accurate way to convert it in your head, however if you divide by 30, you get a rough idea. I never can divide by 30 without a calculator because it usually doesn't come out evenly, however if you count how many hundreds are in the price, then multiply that by three, you get a ROUGH idea of the cost. It won't be the most accurate, but you at least can get an idea if something is really overpriced or not. For example:
There are 4 hundreds in 400, so take 4 multiplied by 3, and you have 12. Does that make sense?
You could also just take off the last two digits and multiply by 3. Whichever is easiest for you!
Although it is confusing at first, I'm sure you will get the hang of it after a couple of days if you try. :)