You have been planning your holiday for many months and you are eager for the time off from your busy life. You have spent a lot of time finding the right location and accommodation, researching things to do on the Internet and even perhaps buying just the right outfits. However, most people fail to take into consideration what they need to do to keep their money safe but taking a few simple precautions with regard to money and other belongings can prevent an enjoyable and relaxing holiday from becoming a catastrophe.
Although using credit cards while on holiday can be a great temptation to overspend, they are really the safest way to pay for your holiday expenses. If they are stolen or lost, they carry with them a liability for fraudulent purchases and can be replaced. The best precaution is to make a photocopy of the cards you plan to take with you and then leave that in a secure location, such a hotel safe, or with a friend or relative you trust back home so you know who you need to contact and how to reach them if your wallet goes missing.
Credit cards also provide you with protection against poor merchandise or service. When used for making hotel reservations or car rentals in countries abroad they usually provide the best exchange rates on foreign currency.
However, there comes several caveats with the use of credit cards. First, limit yourself to only one or two credit cards so as to limit your daily spending, Make sure you do not let the credit card out of your sight; even it means you have to follow your waiter to the register. When you put the credit card back in your wallet, also check to see that it is yours.
When you are not in your hotel room, while out visiting holiday attractions or even if you are still at the hotel enjoying its outdoor pool, you should not leave your wallet or other important belongings in your room. Hotel workers have access to your room, and if accidentally leave your hotel room door unlocked, other hotel guests can enter and steal your belongings. If the hotel has a safe, then use it, even if it seems like an inconvenience.
Travelers’ checks are one of the best forms of money for your holiday travel. Some financial institutions offer them for free or at reduced rates. You can use them almost as readily as cash and they can be easily replaced but make sure that your places at your holiday destination will accept them. However, it is best to use them in exchange for goods or services rather than cashing them in as fees and exchange rates are both likely to be sky-high.
If you do plan to use cash, do not carry all of it on your person. Take only what you think you will need when you go out and keep the rest in unusual containers and be inventive. Try a small zippered cosmetic case or stuffing it in with some of your clothing. Again, a hotel safe is your best alternative.
When you are away from your room with your cash, break it up and hide it away in different places on your clothing, in a sock, or in a tote bag so as to reduce the impact of theft. If you have a travel companion, then ask that person to carry some of this cash in his or her wallet.
How well you handle your money while on holiday will determine your risk of theft. Travelers who let their guard down are easy targets for thieves. Good planning and taking a little extra time with safeguarding your belongings and money can lead to a more carefree holiday experience.