1Dollar= ??? Rupees


When I landed in US the first place I visited was Walmart Super Store. We had to get groceries that we might need the next day morning. Walmart was so huge compared to whatever I had seen in India, no city in India had a super market with such variety of things accumulated in one place. So I actually got deviated from my shopping list and was checking out cosmetics, and everything there.
Now,the first thing that was gaining my attraction was the rate in dollars. I would immediately convert it into rupees*, roll my eyes and move on. Food stuff, I knew it was no point converting, whatever the rate was , we had to buy that ; or starve here. But other things Ratish had to take a lot of effort to convince me that it was ok to buy that. Gradually I started showing some improvement in this, the first time I was in Walmart, I was so particular about making the conversion as per each day’s $ rate. I used to be like now how much is 12.50* 46.40, of course I was not Raamanuja,the great mathematician , to calculate that in my mind. So I would pull out my iphone and switch on the calculator and do it.When I got really fed up of doing that I finally decided to round off the dollar value to 40 or 50 rupees. 🙂 :). That did make my job a lot easier. :). This kept happening where ever we went for shopping (clothes/sandals/even sanitary napkins).
I didn’t appreciate this habit, neither did Ratish. So I decided to change this somehow. The only way I found, was to understand clearly the standard of living and quality was really high in the US. Ratish read this post when it was just a rough draft and he told me that the way I was trying to find out, how the Indianised cost would be was actually wrong ; and there was some parameter kept as the standard to do this. It is called the Purchasing Power Parity(PPP). This concept is a bit complicated though. It is complicated by the fact that countries do not simply differ in a uniform price level; rather, the difference in food prices may be greater than the difference in housing prices, while also less than the difference in entertainment prices. People in different countries typically consume different baskets of goods. So let us take an example of PPP that is easy to understand. One of that would be, The Big Mac Index. The index takes its name from the Big Mac, a hamburger sold at McDonald’s restaurants. The Big Mac was chosen because it is available to a common specification in many countries around the world as local McDonald’s franchisees at least in theory have significant responsibility for negotiating input prices. For these reasons, the index enables a comparison between many countries’ currencies.
McDonald's Big Mac

Now, the big mac costs $3.57 in USA and the same cost 1.22 $ in India. Today July 27 2010 1$=46.5 rupees.
So 1 big mac is 56.73 rupees, and accordingly 1$ would be 15.89 rupees.
With this as the basic parameter we can calculate the price of other things. Similarly we can find the conversions for other currencies too.

So now I am happy with my shopping as I was in India and no more confusions.So all of you who are still having this conversion disease, and who might develop this, the difference is not as huge as we think. Another strange thing I came across was, a lot of things are more expensive in India than in the US, and that is obviously what we call inflation.

*Rupees is the currency used in my country,India. In the above image the sign on the right is the symbolic representation of rupees , this was released in July 2010.

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