The euro had been 30 years in the making when 11 European countries adopted it as their currency on January 4, 1999. In 1969, member countries of the European Economic Community met in The Hague to discuss the creation of a single currency for their nations. The idea passed through several stages and it began to solidify in 1995 when the governments involved settled on the name “euro” for the new currency. Since its inception, the euro has expanded to become the national currency of 17 European countries. There are several simple ways to convert U.S. dollars to euros.

Look up the conversion rate of U.S. dollars to euros using a site like XE or Oanda. These sites are updated as the market changes. As of March 2011, $1 equaled €0.71.

Use the currency conversion site or other online calculator to do the math for you. These sites usually have two boxes with scroll-down menus listing the different currencies. Select “U.S. dollar” from the first list. Next to it, you also find an empty box. Type how much money you have in dollars. Set the second menu to “euro.” Click the command button on the computer screen to retrieve the result.

Do the math yourself by multiplying the amount you have in U.S. dollars by the value of $1 in euros. So, if you have $100, using the sample rate in Step 1, you would multiply 100 by 0.71. The result is 71. That means you have the equivalent of €71.