As we've spoken to different people about Ecuador we've gotten all kinds of questions. Sometimes they are general questions like what's the weather like or the cost of living and other times they are more about the culture. So, we're going to try to answer some of the common questions here. If you have any specific questions, let me know.
What currency does Ecuador use? They actually use the US dollar, just like we do. Back in 2000, Ecuador moved from the Sucre to the US dollar. The majority of the countries in the world use their own currency but there are actually several that use the US dollar. That process is called dollarization. So, the same dollar you have in your pocket you can use in Ecuador- no difference. Well, they actually do mint their own coins but they are the same values. They more or less just have different faces printed on them. Here is a wikipedia link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ecuadorian_centavo_coins You know the dollar coins that we have here that hardly anyone every uses? They use them a lot there. Since a lot of people still exclusively use cash, the coins simply last longer than bills.
One benefit, for us anyways, is that we don't have to worry about changing currency. A lot of times missionaries and travelers may end up loosing money because of the exchange rate, which changes all the time. Also, we'll be able to recognize if something is high or low priced as soon as we get there. If you've ever traveled to a country and seen a price of 300 or more for a bottle of water you know it can be a struggle to know if you're getting a good price or not.