Traveling is an amazing thing to do for every single part of your being. It fulfills you, it teaches you new things, it makes you meet new people and it ultimately changes into a new “you” (a better, “upgraded” you).
If you have decided to travel, one of the things you will most probably really want to take care of is your money. Of course, this includes being careful about how you spend your money, but it also includes safety and “technicalities” as well. Personally I prefer to keep my global transaction fees as low as possible through Currency Fair.
So, how to deal with money when you travel? Here are some great tips to help you out:
Global Money Transfers:
If you have an account overseas and are looking to be based somewhere for a longer time, say a few months at least, then a global money transfer might be your best option. Making regular, smaller transactions can become really expensive when you take fees into consideration. So if you can, look into global money transfers as a secure way to get funds to your new destination.
Cash, Credit, Debit – What Is Best to Use?
It is very important to choose the right way to pay for your expenses – but considering the fact that there are multiple options, making the right choice may not be as easy as some think it would be. Paying in cash is great because it works everywhere. However, keep in mind that it can be really unsafe to carry all (or even a large part of) your money on you (and this is valid no matter where in the world you want to travel).
Furthermore, paying with credit card is very easy and it’s perfect for the larger expenses (such as plane tickets, for example). However, the downside is that not all places accept credit cards (and if you are from the US, you might find that most places in Europe these days use Chip-and-PIN and that there are some places where basic US magnetic cards will not be accepted).
Last, but not least, using your debit card to withdraw money from the ATM feels like the perfect compromise between the above-mentioned options. You can withdraw as much as you want and there are some places where you can pay directly by debit card as well. The major disadvantage to doing this though is that you will most likely have to pay quite a lot in terms of conversion fees and even withdrawal fees.
Safety First, Please!
Using the right method can give you some amount of safety when traveling abroad. However, there are many other things to take into consideration as well. For instance, if you want to carry a sum of money with you, make sure it’s as close to your body as possible (front pouches are really good for this, but you may not want to wear them in a very visible way).
Also, make sure that you declare your credit card or debit card as stolen if that happens to you – and that you do it as fast as possible. Otherwise, you might end up with huge expenses on your card without even noticing.
Before you travel, make sure you research your destination as thoroughly as possible. You should look into how people there pay for their expenses, how to lower the conversion fees with as much as possible and how to find cards and banks that are present in your destination country.