Carrying Your Cash
- Make sure to take your money in ‘combined form’-some cash and some traveller’s checks and always keep some money stashed back where you are staying (don’t carry all of it around.) That way if you get pickpocketed or lose your wallet or bag, you will still have a way to pay for transport and meals.
- Make sure to find out in advance if the destination you are going to charges extra to use a credit card and has ready bank accessibility.
- Carry the majority of all of your money you are taking along in smaller bills as many places do not break large bills.
The Best Way to Pay
Before leaving for your trip, make sure to inform the credit card issuing bank that you are travelling and remember to mention the approximate dates you will be gone and back-that way the charges will not look suspicious.
- Many credit card companies are now ‘tracking’ abnormal use and may deny payment or even freeze the card the moment they are suspicious of any strange activity on the card.
- Be sure to find out the exact charge for using the card overseas, recently some credit card companies have been tacking on fees (one to two percent) onto overseas transactions.
- Use the credit card for making major purchases such as car rentals and plane tickets and paying for things near the end of your visit.
ATM’s (Cash Machines)
- If going to Europe or most countries in the Middle East and Asia, then ATM’s work mostly the same and you can avoid standing in line and looking for a bank.
- You will get charged a fee after a direct debit is made out of your home account and the currency in the local currency is given but the fee is better than that of traveller’s checks.
- Avoid using your credit card in the ATM for cash advances as they tack n a charge per transaction and if absolutely necessary, then take out the cash once and as little as needed as you have to pay the interest from the day you take out the money and a surcharge.
- Rather than carry your designer bag, try to beat thieves by using a smart money belt around your waist.
- Familiarize yourself with the local areas, find out what areas can be dangerous or where there are known for crime. Be careful venturing out at night, not all places are as safe as Dubai.
- Downplay expensive jewellery and wear normal understated comfortable kinds of clothes, not flashy designer duds-try to take attention away from you rather than the other way around.
- Familiarize yourself with local bargains and prices.
- Avoid shopping in hotels or shopping areas near the airport as they take advantage of the tourists.
- Always ask if that country encourages bargaining; a number of places in the East use this method of lowering the price and you can get deals at never imagined before prices.
- Also learn what is that particular place known for; do they have special wooden pieces or jade jewellery at dirt cheap prices? By finding out in advance you will save money and come away with a piece of that culture.
- The choices for payment are cash, traveller’s checks, or credit card. The best is if you will be paying for things in cash, to get travellers checks from the bank before leaving.
- You can convert these to cash as needed and if you lose them or they are stolen, then you get them replaced-make sure to get a written police report and report it to issuing bank within 24 hours if stolen.
- Even if you never use travellers checks they can be returned for a full refund so bring them in case of an emergency.
- Make sure to choose a well-known company the most famous are American Express, Thomas Cook, and Visa. You can only replace or refund the travellers checks if you know the serial numbers of the checks and know exactly what checks you have cashed and what you have lostmake photocopies of all of the checks and of your passport and leave it safe with a friend or family member at home in case of emergency as well as a copy in the suitcase in the hotel.