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Money and Tax Advice for the USA

Exchange Rates

The US Dollar is divided into 100 cents:

  • 1 New Zealand Dollar = 0.761795 US Dollar
  • 1 British Pound = 1.57022 US Dollar
  • 1 Euro = 1.25548 US Dollar
  • 1 Australian Dollar = 0.986830

US Dollar The exchange rates are correct as at May 2012 but they do change – for up-to-the-minute rates check out http://www.xe.com/


There are a handful of main banks in the US that have branches across the country. While opening a bank account isn't difficult, it is best to shop around for one. Banks in the US seem to charge for everything, including ATM (cashpoint) withdrawals, so try to ensure that you open an account that either has so many free withdrawals per month or has lower fees.


Almost everything you pay for in the USA is taxed. Be warned that the tax on meals and drinks, accommodation and most things you buy is added to the price. Occasionally tax is included in the price, like drinks at a bar. A few states have no sales tax and in others it varies up to about 8%. There may also be local and city sales taxes (between 5% and 8%). Find out more about sales tax and paying tax from the US Inland Revenue at... www.irs.gov.

For more information and general travel advice visit the Gapwork.com planning section to get advice on money, visas, insurance, travel safety and what to take when you are taking a gap year and looking for gap work.