Friday, November 21, 2008

Tips and Tricks: Traveling with Money

These are a few tips and tricks on traveling with your money I've picked up from more experienced travelers or discovered myself while traveling.

1. You really do not need to withdrawal all your travel funds or convert them to traveler's checks before you travel. ATMs are everywhere and they give you a better conversion rate than currency exchange centers.

2. I still recommend you carry some emergency cash on you, just not too much.

3. Travelers checks get much better conversion rates than cash.

4. If you carry cash try to get new bills. Some countries will not accept a crumpled up bill.

5. You can split up your bills into different pocket. For example 5s in your left pocket, 20s in your right pocket, 100s in a thigh pocket etc. This is helpful for bargaining too, as you will know exactly which pocket has which bill. Then you can pull out the entire pocket and say you only have this much to buy with.

6. ATMs are also wonderful because you do not have to carry a bunch of cash with you everywhere you go. If you lose your wallet, you won't lose too much.

7. I recommend only carry cash and an ATM card in your wallet. Do not carry your credit card around unless you intend to use it. Keep the credit card stashed away some place safe. In the event your wallet does get stolen the thief will only get a little bit of cash and an ATM card that he/she will not be able to use without your PIN. Obviously cancel your ATM card.

8. Do get a money belt. You can carry your credit cards, large sums of cash, plane/train tickets, your passport etc in here. Obviously try not to access it in public. I recommend the Eagle Creek UnderCoverTM Silk Moneybelt, as it's the one that I use. The silk is nice for hot and humid locations like southeast asia.

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