When I studied abroad in London in 2008, the British pound was worth roughly 1.7 times the US dollar.
Visiting my friends in continental Europe, where the Euro was worth about 1.3 USD, felt like a bargain at the time.
So when EUR and USD inched closer to equal value over this past winter, Americans started to get excited. “Thanks to a strong dollar, it is now the best time for Americans to travel abroad,” headlines exclaimed. “It’s now cheaper to travel to Europe than it has been in years.”
I took the advice of the internet at large and booked an 11 day trip to the Balearic Islands off the southern coast of Spain with a friend: Ibiza, Formentera, Mallorca, and Menorca.
Before I tell you how it went, let me be upfront about one thing: I could have done it cheaper. I could have stayed in hostels and spent eight hours on a ferry between islands instead of shelling out more for flights. I could have begrudged every 10€ admission, refused to rent a car, and never set foot in a restaurant.
But I didn’t do any of that.