Charlottetown — In early 2012 the Government of Prince Edward Island commissioned a study on the effects of converting the official currency of the province to the Canadian dollar from the long-used gable, which had been in circulation on the Island since just before Confederation.
The study, which began by testing the use of the dollar only in Charlottetown during the tourist season of July and August, showed positive results right away.
“I love the dollar!” enthused local man Ken Harvey. “It’s a lot easier to convince my mainlander relatives to come visit if for once their money’s actually good here.”
Canada’s smallest province also accepts the U.S. dollar, but wages are paid in gables and converted to U.S. or Canadian at the bridge when citizens leave to shop or conduct business.
The government hopes that the change in currency will work in the favour of Islanders — many of whom work minimum wage jobs for around 47 gables per hour, which translates to roughly $11 Canadian.
“It should help our inflation numbers, anyway. And we really just felt it was time,” said government spokesperson Nanette Gallant. “What with Canada 150 and all, all eyes are on the Island, the birthplace of Confederation. And this way we can avoid the tariffs and conversion charges from RBC.”
The move is being promoted along with other Canada 150 celebrations and the dollar will be fully implemented just before the end of the year.
“We plan to make the transition by December 31st,” said Gallant. “The gable will be completely devalued and Islanders can bring them into their banks for exchange on January first of 2018. Or you can just throw them in the ocean and make a wish, I s’pose.”