Looking to score a cheap vacation this summer? Keeping an eye on where you can get the most bang for your U.S. buck is one way to keep costs low and value high. Here are eight places where the buying power of the U.S. dollar is on the rise. (Learn how to cash in on currency fluctuations in Profit From Forex With Currency ETFs.)

In Pictures: Vacation Savings Tips

1. Fiji
In the past two years, the dollar rose from 1.5 to 1.9 Fiji dollars (FJD). The dollar peaked at almost 2.25 FJD in April of 2009 but has since retreated. Even with the fall over the past twelve months, the U.S. dollar remains well above 2008 levels and year-to-date has risen slightly. Fiji is located in the South Pacific; its main islands are Viti Levu and Venua Levu. (You can see Fiji and other exotic locales without breaking the bank. Read Globetrotting On A Budget to find out more.)

2. Hungary
In the past two years, the dollar has fluctuated between roughly 140 and 250 Hungarian forint (HUF). Even after surrendering much of its gains in 2009, the dollar still hovers around 200 HUF, which is well over the 160 HUF it was worth in April 2008. Budapest is the country's most popular tourist destination.

3. Czech Republic
Although the chart of the dollar against the Czech koruna (CZK) does not look too good over the past twelve months, the dollar has done well in the three-month, six-month and two-year holding periods. Since April 2008, the dollar has risen from below 15 to just under 24 CZK. The Czech Republic is home to Prague, one of Europe's most popular destinations for tourists.

4. Norway
In April 2008, the dollar was valued near five Norwegian krones (NOK); it is now worth approximately six NOK. The interim has been full of peaks and valleys. After sliding for most of 2009, the dollar has managed to climb in both the three and six-month holding periods. Norway's landscape makes it a popular destination for hikers and skiers.

5. Morocco
The dollar is off its two-year high of 8.82 Moroccan dirhams (MAD), however in the past two years the dollar has risen from 7.26 to 8.28 MAD. The North African nation borders Spain and Algeria. Popular tourist destinations include Marrakesh, Tangiers and Casablanca.

6. Switzerland
Two years ago, the dollar and the Swiss franc (CHF) were even. The dollar staged an aggressive climb to over 1.2 CHF before falling below 1 CHF in December 2009. Since then, the dollar has risen to about 1.065 CHF. Switzerland is widely known for its mountainous Alpine region.

7. Dominican Republic
Between 2002 and 2004, the U.S. dollar leapt from 16.23 to 51 Dominican pesos (DOP). Recent gains are far less pronounced, but over the past two years, the dollar has charted a steady climb against the Dominican peso, rising from around 32 to 36.4 DOP per dollar. Popular destinations within the country, which shares the island of Hispaniola with Haiti, include Puerto Plata, Santo Domingo and Punta Cana.

8. Trinidad and Tobago
This nation composed of several islands is widely known for its national Carnival festival held each February. The U.S. dollar hit a low of 6.0255 Trinidad and Tobago dollars (TTD) in August 2008, but has since recovered. Year to date, the dollar has fallen slightly, but in the past six months, the U.S. dollar has risen from 6.185 TTD to 6.35 TTD.

Outsmart Holiday Spending
Since vacations can get pretty pricey and the dollar is always on the move, it is good to pay attention to currency rates. However, currency rates should be just one of several factors used to plot your next international excursion. A cheaper destination may save money, but other factors which you may not want to sacrifice include safety, amenities and convenience of travel arrangements. (Find out more in The Basics Of Travel Insurance, Travel Smart By Planning How You'll Pay and Travel Tips For Keeping You And Your Money Safe.)

While you ponder your next vacation destination, here are a couple of places where your dollars will not go very far: Canada and the Eurozone.

Check out last week's business highlights in Water Cooler Finance: My iPad Beats Your Toyota.

Related Articles
  1. Personal Finance

    Seven U.S. Destinations You’d Swear Were Overseas

    If you can't stop thinking about safety (or your budget) as you plan your vacation, try these seven very-exotic-feeling places right here in the U.S.
  2. Budgeting

    Is Living in Europe Cheaper than in America?

    Learn how living in Europe has financial advantages over living in the United States. Discover the benefits to take advantage of when it makes financial sense.
  3. Personal Finance

    Oil Prices Are Down, Airfares Aren't. What's Up?

    Oil is down to $30 a barrel. But consumers are still hit with fuel surcharges on airline tickets.
  4. Investing

    7 Creative Ways to Save for an Early Retirement

    Take note of these out of the box steps you can take towards securing yourself an earlier, more comfortable retirement.
  5. Personal Finance

    5 Places Where Your Travel Dollar Goes Furthest

    The dollar is pretty strong right now, but where is it strongest? Canada? South Africa? Europe? Here are five places to travel to right now on a budget.
  6. Retirement

    Birch Box Review: Is It Worth It?

    Learn more about the convenience of the subscription beauty box industry, and discover why the Birchbox company in particular has become so popular.
  7. Savings

    Solution to Stingy Airline Awards: Cash Back Cards

    Many frequent flyer program members are having trouble redeeming flights. A sensible alternative is to use a cash back card to accrue money for travel.
  8. Forex Education

    Four Currencies Under the Spotlight in 2016

    With currencies having become the “tail that wags the dog,” in terms of their impact on the global economy, these four currencies will be under the spotlight in 2016.
  9. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    4 ETF Strategies for Growth in Africa for 2016 (EZA,EGPT)

    Invest in the African region with these four methods that outline the ETFs on the market. Learn about ETFs for investing in individual African countries.
  10. Personal Wealth & Private Banking

    Women, Invest In Your Financial Literacy

    Becoming financially literate should be on the to-do list of anyone who is not.
RELATED FAQS
  1. Why are most airplane tickets nonrefundable?

    Airplane tickets are generally nonrefundable, because the majority of tickets sold are discount tickets. In exchange for ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. Is Norway a developed country?

    Norway is a highly developed country, and typically has a world GDP ranking in the top 30, with a 2014 GDP at $500 million ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. How does a bank determine what my discretionary income is when making a loan decision?

    Discretionary income is the money left over from your gross income each month after taking out taxes and paying for necessities. ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. What is the range of deductibles offered with various health insurance plans?

    A wide range of possible deductibles are available with health insurance plans, starting as low as a few hundred dollars ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. How do I know how much of my income should be discretionary?

    While there is no hard rule for how much of a person's income should be discretionary, Inc. magazine points out that it would ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. What proportion of my income should I put into my demand deposit account?

    Generally speaking, aim to keep between two months and six months worth of your fixed expenses in your demand deposit accounts. ... Read Full Answer >>
Trading Center