Our tips for keeping money safe while traveling, converting money, and gratuities abroad.
Keeping Money Safe
If your hotel room has a safe, use it! If not, split up your money and conceal it in different places. When you’re out and about—consider a money belt or neck wallet to wear under your clothes if you’re concerned about pickpockets.
It’s good to have a little cash in the local currency with you when you arrive. Don’t wait to convert your money at the airport—they rarely have good conversion rates and usually charge a fee. Check with your bank a few weeks before your trip, in case they need to order foreign currency for you. When you’re traveling, use an ATM to take out money in the local currency. (Be sure to notify your bank or credit cards before you leave that you’ll be traveling, and find a credit card with no foreign transaction fees.)
In some countries, tipping is unnecessary and, sometimes, even seen as an insult. Do some research on the local tipping customs before you arrive. If you’re traveling with a group travel organization, find out if gratuities are included and/or if you should plan to have a cash tip for your guides.