The Yen exchange rate doesn’t like me. it is rising. It will be the worst rate since the beginning of my trips in 2004. Meaning: This will be the most expensive journey ever.
Here is the history of the exchange rate of the last 14 years. Low means good. I usually use the 10.000yen hotel room for example. On my first trip is costs $100 (75€). On my third trip it was $80 (60€). Therefore the hotels on this trip were from the high price section. I even booked the Deluxe Suite in Hotel Edoya or a room in the Nikko Kanaya. Sadly, I got used to this luxury.
On my last trip I got some trouble. The yen went up twice very steep. Thanks to Leman Brothers in 2008 and Greece in 2010. The displayed ratesin bank were 100:1 The highest rate ever for me. The reference hotel room was now at $130 (100€). An increase of 60% from the trip before.
Just to think about it. A deposit at your account will give you 2% p.a. If you had some yen in 2008 they would have made over 25% p.a. for 2 years. And if you had waited until today you would still have got 12% p.a. Better not think about it.
And this time the exchange rate will be worse. No more Spa & Resort Hotels. Since 2010 the rate is still rising. The worst vaule was in July with a 107:1. But I have a little bit of luck. Since July the rate is falling slowly. It doesn’t look that big of a deal, but we are talking about 10%. On a $4500 trip it will save me $450.
I have to do something. Specially at the hotels. My plan was a night in Minakami. But 24000 yen for a night is not possible this time. We are talking about $320. In 2008 it were only $190 and a different story. Maybe I would have booked it then, just because it is theee onsen. But I placed my limit at 7000yen, and only want to go above it, if I have to, if there is no other room available. And I will change money as late as possible, to get the best exhange rate possible.
If I think about it: My 2008 trip cost me $5300. Today I would have to over $8500 for the same trip. Wow. In the other direction: My actual hotel cost calculation of $4000 in the old 2008-rate would shrink the cost to $2400. No, I don’t want to think about it. But there may be one positive aspect: Less annoying gaijins running around.
BTW … In two weeks I will be in Japan.