Concerned about theft

Apr 19th, 2007, 08:50 AM
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 2,471
Check here:

They have wonderful security purses and wallets such as these:

My husband carries this one tucked into his pants with our passports and credit cards in it:

I would get yourself an atm card just for the trip and then cut it up when you get home. It is wonderful to just take out money a little at a time.

Another thing I do is put copies of our passports and an extra credit card or two inside the lining of my luggage. That way we have a back up plan in case we our other things get stolen.

Have a great trip!
kelliebellie is offline  
Apr 19th, 2007, 10:11 AM
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I consider wearing a money belt to be just a necessary part of a trip. I don`t thnk they are that uncomfortable, for the peace of mind they bring.
pat is offline  
Apr 19th, 2007, 10:16 AM
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I agree Pat. I can't imagine what kind of moneybelt people have that they say is uncomfortable!! Maybe they think a fannypack is a moneybelt and they keep it under their shirt.
TravMimi is offline  
Apr 19th, 2007, 10:24 AM
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I think you need to disabuse yourself of the idea that Spain is anything like Mexico - except that Spanish is the lanuage of both countries.

Spain is a modern industrialized nation with the same type of banking system/economy as the US and the rest of western europe. It's true that there are pickpockets in major tourist destinations - as is true all over the world.

But you really need to use CC and ATMs. Carrying cash is much less safe - and travelers checks are tantamount to useless (no one wants to change them - and the few banks that do will charge horrendous rates).

And fanny packs are the best way to attract attention and increse you chances of having money/valuables stolen. Just use normal wallet in pants or jacket pocket - or purse - but be aware of your suroundings.
nytraveler is offline  
Apr 19th, 2007, 10:59 AM
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If you really can't/won't use credit cards and an ATM card to get cash, I guess you need to split it between cash and travelers checks, and split that between the two people traveling together.

You can use a "fanny pack" if you must to carry stuff like you'd put in a backpack, but I would not put anything valuable in it.

You need to get some kind of system especially carrying too much cash, whether a money belt, hidden security pockets in your clothes, leg safe, whatever.
suze is offline  
Apr 19th, 2007, 11:00 AM
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It's kind of funny because I vacation in Puerto Vallarta often, and an ATM is how I always get my cash there. I can see being wary of credit card fraud, but I don't see what that has to do with ATM's using a machine?

suze is offline  
Apr 19th, 2007, 11:05 AM
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The only thing you might do to draw more attention to the location of where your cash is and make it even easier for the crooks is to paint the fanny pack a bright color and put a big sequined dollar sign on so they'd be sure not to miss it.

I fail to understand why anyone would wear one to put their money in and make it so conspicuous.
NeoPatrick is offline  
Apr 19th, 2007, 11:06 AM
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I wear TravelSmith slacks that have an extra pocket and zipper within one of the pants pockets. This precaution has worked for me. They are also easy to wash out in the sink and they dry quickly. No one would mistake them for Armani, but if you’re wearing Armani, you’re a more likely target for thieves, I would think.
wanderful is offline  
Apr 19th, 2007, 11:51 AM
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Wear a fanny pack (what we Europeans call a bum bag). Put nothing of any value in it. Stow your money, cards, passport, and suchlike distributed about your person in inner pockets, and keep a modest amount of cash in an easily-accessible pocket.

The fanny pack can be a decoy for pickpockets.
Padraig is offline  
Apr 19th, 2007, 12:01 PM
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I'll add to the choir...and see ditch the fanny pack. The way I see says to the nefarious ones...hey guys, this is where I am carrying my valuables, why do that??

I went to Africa 2 years ago, carried all my valuables in zippered pants. In Paris last year, in zippered jacket pockets.

And I will admit confusion on the comment that they accept American dollars. First of all, they have a local currency, and to think you can use US$ everywhere would seem overly optimistic...and IF they did, what kind of exhange rate do you think they would give you? Tosh as someone here would say..

TCs are not recommended anymore, for their extra cost and for their inconvenience (not everyone would accept them, exchange rate issues, having to find a bank to exchange them..) If you must, as backup only. Credit cards, ATM card, some cash before're on your way.
Michel_Paris is offline  
Apr 19th, 2007, 06:45 PM
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How about those people that wear their backpacks in the front? I always have an urge to run up to them, say "boo!" and rob them myself!
kelliebellie is offline  
Apr 19th, 2007, 06:50 PM
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Thus far, the focus has been on bum bags, but no one has mentioned theft of valuables in a car.

I pretty much insist on having a 'proper' trunk so that there is no hint of any car valuables visible.

One can lose a lot more in a baggage theft than in a purse theft.
Rastaguytoday is offline  
Apr 19th, 2007, 07:05 PM
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Strongly advise against a fanny pack - it will make you a target.

And, leave your wallet at home. Bring only what you need and wear some sort of security pouch under your clothing with your passports (if you insist on carrying them around), cards, cash. T

If you really have to have a "wallet" in your front pocket, get a new one - very slim (better, a business card case) and flat. Better yet are slacks with a hidden zipper pocket behind one of the side pockets.
djkbooks is offline  
Apr 20th, 2007, 02:45 AM
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OP says he will be in Spain for 10 days and the rest of Europe for 2 more weeks: 24 days. At 250 euros per day (hotel, food, transportation, admissions) for a couple, that is $7800 USD. That is a lot of cash, even in 100 euro notes.
Ackislander is offline  
Apr 20th, 2007, 04:03 AM
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After wearing money belts around the waist on our first trip, we switched to slacks with zipper security pockets. They are more comfortable. We also use a safety pin to make sure they are secured. I also gave up caring a purse. Less to worry about. It all depends on what is comfortable for you. But split up your valuables and be alert.
Apr 20th, 2007, 05:10 AM
Join Date: Mar 2005
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Yikes Ack! Thanks for doing the math. That is way to much money in my opinion to have on you even in travelers checks. I would definitly get an ATM card ASAP! I'm assuming your bank will protect you from fraud if numbers are stolen.
kelliebellie is offline  
Apr 20th, 2007, 08:05 AM
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Don't be paranoid. Spain is not Mexico - but having said that, I had no probs in Mexico either.

Your passport is the most valuable thing you have. I would NEVER, EVER carry that in what I would call a bum bag and you call a fanny pack.


If you are staying in upmarket accommo leave it in the hotel safe - or maybe if it's a really swish place in the safe in your room.

Otherwise carry it in a money belt, and then you can forget about it.

As for carrying cash. WHY? It's Europe - use an ATM.

Once upon a time I used to load myself up with travellers' cheques - have stories to tell about trying to cash them in Harare or Hyderabad.

I still have some - and I take them with me on every journey as a back up, just like one takes a few US dollar bills as well.

But times have changed.

If it's any consolation to you I have used my ATM card in Thailand, China, Mexico, Guatemala, Spain, Finland, etc, etc. and it's been sweet.

Happy travels.

And remember, Europe is not an uncivilised jungle.
chimani is offline  
Apr 20th, 2007, 08:07 AM
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Would you be so wound up about this if you were visiting the US.

If not, why?
chimani is offline  
Apr 20th, 2007, 08:28 AM
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Gsteed: "American Dollars are still the most accepted currency.". Not in Europe they're not. Are you seriously suggesting they just bring several thousand dollars with them?
nona1 is offline  
Apr 20th, 2007, 10:01 AM
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"Consider buying small gold coins at home and selling them abroad." LOL

a. That is smuggling.
b. Who are you going to sell them to?
c. Why not bring chickens? You could barter with them. That said not sure how many cappucini you would get for a chicken.

waring is offline  

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