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Travel Money Tips: the problem with carrying cash

Before packing your bags for that next trip abroad, set aside a few moments to consider financial safety on the road. You'll want keep your money safe but not totally inaccessible, but should you carry cash? Sure, cash is accepted everywhere. At the same time, however, nobody wants to become an easy target for thieves and scammers by flashing their cash around. Turns out the disadvantages of carrying cash weigh a little heavier on the scale than the advantages...here's why.  

 

 

 

The problems with carrying cash while traveling abroad

Before we get into the disadvantages of carrying cash, let's cover all the angles first. There is actually one advantage of carrying just a tiny amount of cash, and that's to pay for incidentals during the first 24 hours of your trip. There's nothing worse than making it through the stressful initial stages of your trip only to have no cash for that taxi ride to the hotel. Or how about arriving at your destination tired and hungry but having no cash to pay for your first meal?

You'll need a bit of cash to tide you over at first, but anything beyond a small amount puts you the special danger zone reserved just for tourists: having all your cash stolen. Safely carrying cash in the local currency requires a bit of stealth and ingenuity: travel experts recommend spreading the cash around among various places: secret pockets in your clothing, a bit in your wallet, and even a bit back in the hotel room. But this is incredibly inconvenient! Cash as currency while traveling has a few other disadvantages...

  1. It can be stolen and there's no recourse for getting any of it back.
  2. Carrying cash safely is a big hassle: security belts, pouches, spreading it all around so if you are targeted by a thief, at least he won't get all of it at once (do you really want to wear a leg wallet?)
  3. Using cash means you'll accumulate lots of heavy coins to lug around.
  4. Using cash means every time you pull out your wallet, you're showing everyone that you've got lots of cash. Even if you spread it around, you're still exposing cash to the view of anyone who's watching. And believe us, they're watching!

 

With all the disadvantages of cash, it's a good thing there is an alternative...

How to pay for things while on holiday has always taken some thought, but now thanks to several travelers' tools it's easier than it used to be to have easy access to your funds without becoming a crime statistic. The best of those tools is travel money cards. Also known as a pre paid credit card, a travel money card will see you through most purchasing scenarios for the rest of your trip, while it frees you from the stress and hassle of dealing with lots of cash.

What are travel money cards?

It's a travel cash card which offers the convenience of a credit card but doesn't leave you exposed to the possibility of credit card fraud or theft. You see, it works like a pre paid credit card, only it's really just a travel cash card. The cards are accepted anywhere Master Card is accepted, just like a credit card. Travel money cards also work at foreign ATMs for times when you need actual cash in the local currency. They offer the quick accessibility of cash but without the terrible risk of having it stolen from your pocket or your hotel room, and disappearing forever. If yours is lost, you simply call up and cancel it in order to preserve the funds still on it. It's possible to lose some of your money if your card is lost or stolen, but at least you won't lose all of it if you call right away.

The benefits of using pre paid cards while traveling abroad

Here are a few more benefits of using a pre paid card for your travel money. They...

  1. ...eliminate the need to visit a Bureau de Change.
  2. ...can be used anywhere you see a Master Card- even in countries other than the currency of the card. You can't say that about cash.
  3. ...allow you to control your spending so you stay on budget (there's no line of credit).
  4. ...free you from worrying about fluctuating exchange rates (you load the card any time you like in advance of your trip, allowing you to choose a time when exchange rates are on your side).
  5. ...provide you with a record of your spending.

 

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