Currency Exchange Offices
I’ve learned to accept limited access to currency exchange through my business trips to some cities in the US, in India where there are some restrictions, and from living in the EU, where currency exchange is obviously not a factor.
Here… not a problem. In case you are not standing beside a currency exchange office or booth, simply walk two or three hundred meters. In either direction, you’re covered. Not just on the main streets, but in the residential area where the Baylor clinic is located.
According to the explanation I received, its tied to currency fluctuations. If the country’s currency or inflation rate is unstable, people will tend to immediately convert their pay to a stronger currency. Euro and USD look to be the most common. I will assume it’s from traditional stability more than the current state of either of these two currencies. These offices are needed so people can convert cash as they use it.
Another explanation is that Romanians frequently work abroad, and use these services rather often. This sort of makes sense, since a lot of EU based companies have chosen Romania as a destination for outsourcing, especially in the IT sector. At least, this is the case in Belgium.
These are by far the best represented businesses anywhere. In case you are somehow not standing beside a pharmacy, look across the street. Or down the street in either direction. You’ll see one or two. I thought Leuven had quite a few. No, not so much.