Figuring out how to keep your money safe on vacation can be tricky. On the one hand, travelers are often targets for pickpockets and other criminals. On the other hand, you don’t want to have to dig through three layers of clothing and undo two locks every time you want to buy something. Savvy travelers maintain a balance between security and practicality that works for them. Try the following tips to find that point for yourself.
– Bring only what you need. Carrying all of your credit, ATM, and identification cards in your wallet heightens your risk of losing them all, without providing you much additional utility. Only bring the cards you’ll use on vacation, and consider bringing photocopies of items like health insurance cards rather than the originals.
– Use a credit card. Credit cards typically offer the best protection against fraud while you’re traveling, so be sure to use them for major purchases. In some cases, you can even get refunds for goods you purchase if they’re stolen on your trip.
– Report problems quickly. If your credit, debit, or ATM card gets stolen, report the theft as soon as possible. Doing so will limit your liability and make it less likely that the thief can access your account.
– Split up your cash and cards. Always keep cash in multiple locations on your person so that you won’t be completely out of funds if you’re robbed or pickpocketed. Consider bringing two credit or debit cards and keep them separate as well, for the same reason.
– Use on-body storage as a personal bank. Bring a money belt or a piece of clothing with sewn-in storage that you can use to keep cash hidden. Every morning, take the money you’ll need for the day out of your on-body storage and put it in your wallet. Doing so will prevent you from advertising the presence of your hidden stash when you’re out and about, while still letting you keep most of your cash secure.