Loving Low Dollar, Europeans Come to Shop

Tourism is up 21% in April alone
By Kate Rockwood,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 26, 2008 9:04 PM CDT
One euro now equals $1.58 and one British pound equals $1.99.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – The weak dollar is forcing Americans to shelve travel plans, but Europeans are flying over to score on stellar exchange rates. With the British pound worth $1.99 and the euro $1.58, tourists are coming to the US to shop: More than 15 million visited in the first 4 months of 2008, spending $11.6 billion in April alone—21% more than the same month last year.

“I bought an iPod for my girlfriend,” a London resident told MSNBC. “It was about half” what he would pay at home. In New York City, the main destination, tourism is up 12% this year. For Americans going to Britain, meanwhile, know that coffee will cost about $3.30 a cup and dinner for two is $200. "I don’t know how you can afford to eat in London," one visitor said.