Lost Your Wallet Travelling

Lost Your Wallet Travelling?

Do you know what you carry in your wallet?

If you are like me, then you keep your most documents in your wallet such as money, drivers licence, credit cards, ID cards etc. So, if you loose or have your wallet/bag stolen, then the impact of such a loss is tremendous. Although we don’t like to think of the possibility things do happen which are out our control so it is best to adopt strategies that will minimise the impact of such loss.

The first obvious strategy is to keep the contents of your wallet/bag to the bare minimum. Only carry the amount of money that you plan to use that day with a little extra. If you are travelling in a developing country such as Bolivia where they mainly deal in cash leave your credit cards with your passport. If you do need a credit card then carry one with you and leave the others back at the hotel safe or where ever your passports are being kept.

I am not a believer of having multiple credit cards but for travel it is a good strategy. I strongly recommend you have two different credit cards which allow you draw money out. That way, if you do loose one, then you will still have the other one safe and sound at the hotel. Make sure that for travel purposes that your partners card has a different number that way if one need to cancel one the other is still active.

Please take photocopies (front and back) of all important cards e.g. credit cards, ID cards and any other official documents. Photocopies will provide you with immediate access to those crucial phone numbers on the back of your card as you won’t always be able to find a phonebook.  Further, photocopies of your ID cards will you enable you to exchange money i.e. traveller cheques and get your ID card replaced easier.

Avoid centralising your funds i.e. have a combination of cash and travellers cheques available for emergencies. If you are only taking credit cards then you need to make sure that you have enough money to get you by for approximately two weeks. The reason for such a long period is that in some parts of the world it may take anything up to six weeks for your replacement card to arrive by either the post.  We had ours delivered by courier and that took over two weeks.

Have a phone card or Skype credits available to call overseas so you can get your cards cancelled and re-issued. Although, most of the financial institutions do have a reverse charge number the problem we found was that the telephone operators either did not provide reverse call services or the queues were so long that the line kept dropping out which cost us more money.

Finally and perhaps the most obvious, carry your wallet on the front of our person. I was carrying mine in my back pocket. I think it became dislodged when I was leaning with my posterior on top of a horizontal metal bar while crouching in a crowded bus.

So enjoy your trip and please safe guard yourself from a possible financial disaster when you travel.

Travel Tips

  • Clean out your bag or wallet and only keep the essential.
  • Carry on the money that you require for that day plus a bit extra
  • Only carry your credit card when you need it
  • Have at least two different types of credit cards or credit cards with different numbers
  • Only carry one credit card at a time and leave the other back with your passport (safe)
  • Take photocopies of your cards and documents
  • Have cash and/or travellers cheques for emergencies – you should have at least 2 weeks worth.
  • Have a phone card or Skype credits to make those important calls back home
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