What to Do If Someone Picks Your Pocket

062706_Sean Locke_pickpocketF.jpgLost your wallet? In Rome? In these days of real-time transactions, this isn’t a predicament that should destroy your vacation. First, report the theft of the credit cards by calling the number on the back of the card. If you were carrying any travelers checks as backup, you can replace these checks immediately, provided that you kept a record of the serial numbers separate from the checks themselves.

If you bank at a large international bank like Citibank or HSBC, go to the closest branch; if you know your account number, chances are you can get a new ATM card and withdraw money right away.

Western Union (tel. 800/325-6000; www.westernunion.com) sends money almost anywhere. Have someone back home order a transfer online, over the phone, or at one of the company’s offices, which is the cheapest option.

The U.S. State Department’s Overseas Citizens Services (tel. 202/647-5225) can wire money to any U.S. consulate or embassy abroad for a fee of $30. Just have someone back home wire money or send a money order or cashiers check to the state department, which will then disburse the funds as soon as the next working day after it receives them.

For more tips on managing your money while traveling, see our Money Matters feature.

Photo credit: Sean Locke