March 17, 2008 Washington Post Business Section: A Taste for Continental Currency
“The Amsterdam Falafelshop in Adams Morgan has for years served as a last stop for both the late-night reveler and the jet-lagged European traveler.”
By Alejandro Lazo
Washington Post Staff Writer
The Amsterdam Falafelshop in Adams Morgan has for years served as a last stop for both the late-night reveler and the jet-lagged European traveler.
Now the owners of the Mediterranean sandwich shop, themselves avid travelers to the old country, have taken an extra step in welcoming transatlantic visitors. They accept euros.
Scott and Arianne Bennett are joining a number of businesses in tourist-heavy areas that have begun accepting the euro and other foreign currencies.
Experts may debate whether this flirtation with foreign currencies marks the decline of the dollar as the international standard for trade. But for the Bennetts, it was simply a matter of not turning away travelers who had yet to visit a currency exchange or bank.
"When European travelers landed here, and they have not had a chance to change their money, there was not much they could do," said Arianne Bennett, 38. "We don't take credit cards."
The new "We Accept Euros" signs also fit neatly into the small shop's general montage of black-and-white photographs of Amsterdam's canals, Coca-Cola posters in Dutch and flags of the Ajax of Amsterdam soccer team.
Few practical changes at the store have been made to accommodate the currency. Conversion sheets are kept near the store's cash register for employees manning the counter. Dollar prices on the menu are converted at the register, and change is returned in dollars. The couple's local Bank of America branch accepts deposits of the foreign currency at no additional charge.