Carrying money whilst overseas and spending less on traveling

@maximax8 (28570)
United Kingdom
October 22, 2012 8:04am CST
I traveled to South America and didn't wish to take all my cash with me. I used two different debit cards, two different credit cards and a lot of money. I was so lucky that I wasn't mugged in Argentina's capital city. The tourist officer told me just in time for me to get away. I came home and saw lots of charges on my debit card and credit card statements. I wish to get a prepay card to make sure my money is totally safe for my next trip. On Which I looked at a list of good debit cards and credit cards to take on my travels. I like the idea of zero percent for getting cash out of an ATM machine and zero percent on my purchases. I will open a bank account and a get a credit card that is great for traveling at a time nearer to my next trip. This will be a way to save money and not spend a huge amount of money? I had a money belt hidden under my clothes and a neck beg with my camera in it. Luckily I stayed totally safe on my last trip. Have you had charges for purchases or withdrawing money from an ATM machine? Where do you get the currency that you need to your trips? Do you have a money belt?
1 person likes this
9 responses
@jillhill (37383)
• United States
22 Oct 12
I took a debit card when I went overseas and used ATM's. I didn't carry much cash....just a bit. I notified my bank as to the dates I would be gone...that way if the card was stolen I could just notify them again.
@maximax8 (28570)
• United Kingdom
22 Oct 12
Going to South Africa I forgot to let my banks know the dates I would be away. They thought it was fraud. I needed the 200 rand to pay for my accommodation. The bank involved had to been phoned from Cape Town.
@beamer88 (4267)
• Philippines
22 Oct 12
When I travel out of the country for vacation, I always bring enough cash with me, usually in US dollars since it's one of the easiest currencies to have exchanged especially in the Asian region. I bring my credit card also but use it only for paying my hotel bills since I'm a bit concerned about credit card fraud like purchases that I haven't made but were credited to my card and stuff. I also refrain from withdrawing money from ATMs in another country. Charges might be steep. I've never used money belts, though, since I don't really carry that big an amount
@maximax8 (28570)
• United Kingdom
22 Oct 12
It is so funny that US dollars are the easiest currency to exchange anywhere in the world virtually. I was surprised to find that in South East Asian countries. They weren't as keen to exchange Australian dollars. You are right to be concerned about credit card fraud. I am nervous of using an ATM card in a non English speaking country. In South Africa I got an advice slip but no money. I had to visit the bank to sort out that one.
@Porcospino (18746)
• Denmark
24 Oct 12
We are leaving for Asia in two weeks and we have exchanged some money in advance. We are going to bring some Euro (we are going to fly from the Netherlands and we are going to spend two days in Paris when we return), some Baht for Thailand and some American dollars that we will be able to spend and/or exchange in Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam. We are not going to bring a lot of cash so we have just exchanged a small amount of each currency and the rest of the time we will use our debit cards and credit cards. I usually withdraw money from an ATM when I arrive at my destination, there is a charge each time I use an ATM in another country, but I still think that it is better than carrying a lot of cash in my bag in case I get robbed.
@albto_568 (1268)
• Costa Rica
23 Oct 12
This charges you talk about, when you returned home, I suppose they were not done for you?, Am I right?. Well, I do not travel as much as you do, but, I usually carry only one credit card, and one debit card, which never, under any circumstance go beyond my sight, in any payment I do, I have to watch it every second. For places I do not trust, or do not know, I pay with cash, I always travel with US dollars.
@mariaperalta (19094)
• Mexico
23 Oct 12
Good ideas, same things can happen here in Mexico to tourists. especially at border cities with the usa. SO much crime there.
@TeamCholent (2843)
• United States
23 Oct 12
One thing I enjoy but hate as well is having a credit card with no Forex fees is that you might be urged to spend a little more than you wanted to. The problem with cash is what happens if you misplace it or happen to get robbed then you are stuck with nothing.
@xredburn (97)
• Portugal
22 Oct 12
Instead of traveling have you considered investing?
• United States
22 Oct 12
We usually travel in the USA so we have our debit cards with us and some cash if we need it. We don't use credit cards because we don't have any. We used travelers check once but that's because we were out of the country on a cruise. I like to have different currencies so when I can exchange some American dollars for foreign I also do.
@marguicha (104302)
• Chile
22 Oct 12
In my country (and I don't know if that is worldwide) it is more expensive to exchange currency at a Bank than to exchange it with someone you know and wants the dollars. The machines charge an extra for withdrawing money. They will not only give you the smaller difference, but they will also charge you for the convertion from one currency to the other. It has happened to me in Brasil too, when using my credit card in dollars to get brasilian money. I have decided it`s part of the game as I would not like to take a lot of money and get mugged. Cards are safer.