The Government Wants YOUR Bolivianos: Central Bank of Bolivia Selling Dollars Directly to Citizens as Devaluation Fears Rise

So you’re strolling through La Paz or taking a road trip through the Altiplano, when out of the corner of your eye you spy hordes of people with their wallets out, standing in lines that loop around the corner. Turns out, they’re not waiting to buy the newest model of the Bolivian iPhone, they’re looking to buy dólares!

That’s right, the Central Bank of Bolivia announced last month that they would start selling dollars directly to citizens in an effort to make sure that the Bolivian boliviano doesn’t devalue against the greenback.

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What Does That Mean?

It means that the Central Bank of Bolivia has been fighting hard to keep the value of the boliviano steady against the U.S. dollar. To make sure that the boliviano doesn’t weaken, the Central Bank of Bolivia is selling USD directly to citizens at a discounted rate in an effort to absorb the bolivianos that are already in circulation.

How Does This Help Me?

In short – it helps you to get cheaper USD! If you’re a savvy shopper, you can either buy the USD directly from the Central Bank at a discounted rate, or find a local currency exchange who will honor the rate.

OK, I’m Convinced. Give Me the Details!

Here’s the skinny:

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  • How Much Does it Cost? The rate being offered is typically 10% less than the prevailing black market rate, so you’re guaranteed to get cheaper dollars than you would otherwise.
  • How Long Does it Last? The program has been ongoing since last month, but the Central Bank could take their foot off the gas at any time.
  • How Do I Get My Hands on Those Cheaper Dollars? You can buy from the Central Bank directly, or from a local currency exchange that honors the rate.

In Conclusion

So there you have it – the Central Bank of Bolivia is selling USD directly to citizens in an effort to shore up the value of the Bolivian boliviano. Whether you’re a savvy investor or an opportunistic traveler, there’s no denying that this program offers some great opportunities to get your hands on those almighty greenbacks.

But act quickly, because you don’t want to be left out of the loop when the Central Bank gets tired of this little charade and takes their foot off the gas.

Happy Dollar Hunting, folks!

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