There’s no getting around it. When you travel, especially overseas, you’ve got to have a plan for your money: how much to bring, where to exchange it, where to stash it and more. Since we’ve been guiding travelers on our active vacations since the late 70’s, we’ve learned a thing or two about traveling with money. Here are 5 tips for preparing your finances before your active trip:
1) Develop a ‘spending strategy.’ Do you want to use travelers’ checks, credit cards or your ATM with an international PIN? This will depend on how many countries you plan on visiting and how developed the region is. If you plan to use a credit card, be sure to alert them in advance that you’ll be traveling and spending in a foreign country so they don’t freeze your account.
2) Stash $100 in your wallet so you have cash upon returning to your home airport. Also, take $20 in $1 US for emergency tip money.
3) Get small bills and coins upon arriving in a foreign country. Familiarize yourself with the currency, noting any similarities between bills or coins. It’s no fun to mistake a $2 coin for a .25 coin!
5) When heading out for the day or while traveling by plane, put your credit cards, passport and travelers’ checks in a money belt beneath your clothes, but put cash (try to estimate what you’ll be spending that day) in your pocket.
Of course, when you take a Backroads bike trip or hiking trip, our knowledgeable Trip Leaders will be there to guide you on all things, including money. Additionally, before you leave on your Backroads trip, you’ll be assigned a Trip Planner who can also help answer questions about financial preparation before you arrive.
Got any tips for traveling safely with money overseas? Anyone learned a lesson the hard way J? Let us know.