Travel Cards

Cards are the topic for all kinds of travellers so here are some tips for everyone who travels abroad. The companies I will mention are UK related but I am sure there are equivalents in other countries.
Here are some tips that has helped me especially when I have lost a card or when one card doesn’t work.

  • Two credit cards – at least one card to be fee free (I say two as when one card doesn’t work, you can use the other).
  • Two Debit cards that give good exchange rates – If you’re from the UK, I recommend using Starling and Monzo as they give a good exchange rates when you withdraw abroad. Here are some of my best points below:

Starling – gives unlimited withdrawals without fees (yay!), you will get a notification on exchange rate instantly when it happens and if you lose your card; you can ‘freeze’ it so no one can use it until you find it again. Then you just click to unfreeze and all good to go. 

Monzo – maximum withdrawal with no fees is £200. Anything above this would incur a fee. Similar to Starling, instant notifications and the ‘freeze’ card option. 

Others that I have heard in Europe that’s worth looking into is N26, Revolut and Transferwise.

  • RFID Card – prevents people from walking past and scanning the card. I’ve seen wallets and purses that have them inbuilt but I like MY purses that I have brought so a simple RFID card shape that slips into one of my card slips is perfect for me. 

Did you withdraw a lot of money and have some change left over? Here are some handy tips to spend that cash:

  • You can keep one of the coins and bring them home as a souvenir. You can do a collage of the coins to represent each place you’ve been.
  • If you don’t want to have anything then I would say, go out and buy something whether it’s a souvenir, a jumper, a hat or food with the remaining amount.
    If you don’t have enough, food and souvenir vendors may still take it or if you pop into a clothing store that has a card machine (usually a branded store) then you can part pay in cash and part pay in card. 
  • If you’re moving around and staying in hostels, you might meet other travellers who are heading to that location so you might be able to do an exchange.
  • Many airports will have a charity donation box where you can place your unwanted coins or notes and they’ll donate it to a charity cause.

Let me know if you have any travel card tips and check out my other posts.

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