Places to Visit Gallery: Madrid

Making a list of all the places I want to visit so that I won’t forget when I get there :D!

MADRID

This list includes:

  • Palacio de Santa Cruz
  • Templo de Debod
  • Plaza de Cibeles
  • Arco de la Victoria
  • Almudena Cathedral
  • Puerta de Alcala
  • Parque del Buen Retiro y Alfonso XII Mausoleum
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Knowing what to say: Money/Bank

Going to Spain? Want to expand your Spanish vocabulary in the meanwhile? Me too! So, we’ll help each other out. I’ll make  a list of words I think are important or interesting to know for a study abroad trip to Spain. Do you have any words you think that I should know in Spanish? suggest them and I’ll follow up.

Money (dinero/moneda)

  • money back guarantee (n) garantía (f) de devolución (del dinero)
  • “money back if not satisfied” “si no queda satisfecho le devolvemos su dinero”
  • money order (n) (US) giro (m) postal
  • it was money well spent fue dinero bien empleado
  • I paid or gave good money for it pagué un buen dinero por ello
  • when do I get my money? ¿cuándo me vas a pagar?
  • to be worth a lot of money -> valer mucho dinero; (thing) tener mucho dinero (person)

Bank (el banco)
  • bank account -> cuenta (f) bancaria
  • bank balance -> saldo (m) bancario, haberes mpl bancarios
  • bank charges -> comisión (f) bancaria, gastos mpl bancarios
  • bank clerk -> empleado(a) (sustantivo masculino o femenino) de banca

Idioms:
  • money doesn’t grow on trees! (familiar) -> ¡el dinero no se encuentra así como así!¡la plata no cae del cielo! (RP)

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Money Tip: When to buy?

When to buy tickets?

Most people who know anything about buying airplane tickets know that Tuesday afternoon (at about 3pm) is the best time to purchase them. This is because the airline companies lower their prices at the beginning of the week to entice buyers. When airline A lowers its prices for a ticket, other airlines will follow suit in order to compete effectively. If there are only 10 people going to Cancun a certain week and Airline A has $20 tickets while the competitors have $300 tickets, guess who gets all the customers AND all the money that there is to get? (hint:Airline A). However, the airlines can’t keep prices too low for too long or else buyers will take all of them AND have paid less than they may have been actually willing to pay. So, eventually the prices start climbing again, that towards the end of the week, they are usually considerable higher than they were at the beginning.

The stealthy game owes its existence to the computer operated ticket-sellers that command the prices during weekends (when workers are at home spending time with families and such). The computers use algorithms that leave prices high to maximize profit until Mondays, when human workers adjust prices for competitiveness.

Of course this game gets trickier depending on demand. Waiting until the last minute can be a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow or it could spell disaster for your travel plans and your bankbook!

When to fly?

No one likes waking up early in the morning to catch a flight, making it the perfect time of day in which to fly. Chances are, you may be the only one of 20 people on a 40-seat plane, translating into a more favorably priced ticket than full flights.
Similarly, there are actually good days on which to fly. Tuesdays (#1), Wednesdays, and Sundays are the cheapest to fly on. This is because most business travelers want to get home from their work related travel. So they tend to be more willing to fork over a couple extra twenties in order to fly out on a Friday. Also, the reverse is true for Sundays, when business travelers need to get back to work or college kids or other vacationers need to get back to school from weekend getaways. This makes Friday and Sunday the worst days to buy tickets!
 

Update: Timing is Everything!

Wed, March 7th

So, I bought my tickets on Tuesday! I am so excited!

I was even more excited about the price I paid. I paid about $600 less than I had originally budgeted largely thanks to my credit card points. But the awesomeness of it all is that the same tickets were being sold for about $500 more only hours before on my credit card rewards portal page! By waiting until early Wednesday morning, I was able to capitalize on the credit card company updating its systems (midnights) and the adventitiously late updating of United price schedule.

So, in the end the price I paid to visit a family members graduation before I head over to Europe was the same price of the ticket to Europe from where I live the next day. Lesson learned: timing is crucial, don’t wait too long, but don’t rush things either!

Facts:

  • United doesn’t charge a fee for your 1st checked bag on a transatlantic flight. (I plan to backpack so I’ll definitely save money there!)
  • United is partners with the national flag carrier of one of the countries I’m stopping in. Definite savings there!
  • When airlines say they offer internet access on board, it only counts for that portion of your trip that’s over the continental U.S. (not over the ~5-hour segment above water) on a transatlantic flight.

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Money Tip: When to Buy?