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How not to be left without money and cards on a trip and what to do if it did happen
How not to be left without money and cards on a trip and what to do if it did happen

While you are resting, the scammers are not asleep, and no one has canceled simple absent-mindedness. We will tell you how to keep cash and cards while traveling and where to run if they are stolen.

How not to be left without money and cards on a trip and what to do if it did happen
How not to be left without money and cards on a trip and what to do if it did happen

Preparing for the trip

Tell the bank you are leaving

Banks are reinsured against fraud and can block the card if they see an unexpected transaction from the other end of Russia or from abroad. Before leaving, contact the bank and inform where you plan to go. You can call the department or enter information in the mobile application.

A couple more preparatory points: make sure that the card does not expire during the trip, and set a limit on transactions. For example, restrictions on cash withdrawals from an ATM, transfer from an account and online purchases. This will help in case of loss or theft - even if you catch yourself, when someone has already used the card, do not lose all the money at once.

Open a foreign currency account

It can be unprofitable to pay from a ruble account abroad. Conversion of rubles into foreign currency at the time of payment is carried out at the internal rate of the bank - as a rule, it is not visible in advance, but it is higher than the exchange rate.

It is better to open an account in euros or dollars and transfer the required amount to it in advance. You can wait for a more or less winning rate in the online application - usually on weekdays and in the mornings, it is more profitable than on weekends and evenings.

Bring some cash with you

During the trip, besides the card, you will need a small amount in bills. She will come to the rescue if something happens to the plastic. And not only that - cash will come in handy to buy little things like a bottle of water, pay in small souvenir shops, and leave a tip.

In some countries, despite digitalization, it is not customary to pay cashless for a cup of coffee - for example, in Germany or Italy. On vacation in the tropics like Thailand, you can't buy fruit on the beach without local currency. And even in the USA it is better to have a reserve of dollars so as not to find yourself in a difficult situation if a payment terminal suddenly breaks down somewhere at a gas station.

It is better to withdraw money in advance so as not to rush around an unfamiliar city on the very first day in search of an ATM. If you are not traveling to the dollar or euro zone, you should still take these currencies with you: changing them for baht, lari, shekels and other local money is usually more profitable and easier than rubles.

Digitize the card and banking transactions on it

In order not to carry plastic with you, add the card to the payment service. This way you can contactlessly pay for purchases from any smart device that supports NFC technology, such as a phone or smart watch.

Even if you have not used SMS notifications, Internet banking or an application before, it is better to activate these services before the trip. This way you can manage money from your smartphone, track expenses, and receive notifications for every transaction. It is convenient, useful for self-control, and better from a security point of view.

On a trip, it is advisable to carry less valuable things with you: documents, gadgets, cards, bills. A smartphone can replace money if installed on it for contactless payment. Keeping track of one device will be much easier than keeping track of wads of cash or stacks of cards.

Don't miss the chance: "Wallet" raffles off a certificate for a trip in the amount of 300 thousand rubles and other prizes - action cameras, suitcases and portable batteries. The winners are determined on the 9th day of each month until September. To become a member, add a Mastercard of one of the partner banks to the "Wallet" and pay for any 30 offline purchases. You will need an Android smartphone with an NFC module.

During the trip

Control of finances during the trip
Control of finances during the trip

Keep the map in sight

Always try to independently apply the card to the terminal, and not give it to the wrong hands. Even if the smiling waiter says that the device catches only in the back room, where only employees can.

Until you see the card, data can be copied from it: number, owner's name, expiration date and CVV-code. This is often enough to make online purchases at your expense. But even if there are no scammers in front of you, you can simply forget the card in the folder with the check.

Do not withdraw cash from no-name ATMs

When money is urgently needed, at least some ATM nearby pleases, even if there is not a single familiar word on it. But the predatory commission is not the most unpleasant thing that can await you when using a strange apparatus. It is much worse to run into skimming devices that are used by criminals to read data from the magnetic stripe of your card and actually get a digital copy of it at their disposal.

Choose cash dispensers that are located in secure locations: bank branches, airports, train stations, hotels and large shopping centers. If you have any questions, do not ask for help from people who are supposedly randomly spinning around - they may be scammers. Better to find a bank branch and ask for advice there.

It is a well-known truth, but it is worth recalling: when you cash out, try to enter your PIN-code unnoticed by others. For example, cover the keyboard with your free hand.

Save your cash

It is better not to carry bills in the back pocket of your jeans - there is a great risk that the money will fall out as soon as you sit down or climb up to grab your smartphone. Store cash in a safe place: belt bag, wallet, internal pocket with a strong zipper. Be careful when walking with a backpack with money in it: when surrounded by a large number of people, it is better to take it off and keep it in front of you.

You can accidentally lose cash on your own. For example, diving into a pool in clothes after friends. When traveling at sea or in a rainy country, put your money, cards, documents, and your smartphone in a waterproof bag. If not, wrap the bills in a regular plastic bag - it's better than nothing.

Carry copies of documents and contacts of loved ones with you

Keep the originals of the documents in the hotel safe - you are unlikely to need them for a walk in the city center or while rafting on a mountain river. For excursions, paper copies or even scans are usually sufficient. If you are often asked for ID at the bar, it is best to bring your driver's license, not your passport.

Contacts of relatives and friends can also be useful to you. Write down phone numbers and email addresses in notes on your smartphone so that they are accessible even without the Internet. Duplicate in a regular paper notebook or sticky notes.

Store valuables in multiple locations

You should not put cash, cards and documents in one place - if thieves get to it, there is a risk of losing everything at once. Better to put some bills in your wallet, cards - in a special case, and leave most of the money in the hotel safe or, in extreme cases, in your room, in a locked suitcase.

If you do have to carry all of your valuables with you at once, keep them in an anti-theft backpack. Firstly, these bags are made of materials that are difficult to cut invisibly. Secondly, it will be much more difficult for thieves to get to the zipper - it is hidden under a thick fabric fold, and the dogs are protected by special locks. In addition, these backpacks often have hard-to-reach sections where you can fold the most important things.

One of the places for storing valuable information should be your smartphone. You can add bank cards to not take them with you on excursions and the beach. Pay for purchases on Android smartphones with an NFC module will help the Pay Wallet service.

You can also add store discount cards to the program. Take advantage of the offers of your favorite brands and do not lose bonuses and promotions while traveling in Russia. Let the plastic stay in a safe place - in the hotel safe or in your home.

If money and cards are still missing

Controlling travel finances: what to do if money is missing
Controlling travel finances: what to do if money is missing

Block your card as soon as possible

If you have searched everything, but the card has not been found, immediately contact the bank and ask to be blocked. To do this, you can call the hotline, send an SMS with a blocking code to a short number or use a mobile application. It is important to do this as early as possible: if you notice the theft and deactivate the card in time, intruders or lovers of profit who have found someone else's plastic will not be able to use it.

Contact the police

If your documents were stolen along with the money, contact the law enforcement officers. You will need to write a statement of theft and receive a confirmation certificate. You will need it to verify your identity - for example, when checking into a hotel.

Connect with family and friends

Firstly, having taken possession of documents or cards, fraudsters can start extorting money from your loved ones. Posing as bank employees or police officers, attackers contact relatives and trust them, calling your passport or payment details. Therefore, warn family and friends to ignore such messages or calls from strangers.

Secondly, if you are left without funds, you will have to ask loved ones for financial assistance. You can transfer cash through a reliable money transfer service. The universal option is Western Union, there are branches almost all over the world.

If the documents for receiving the transfer are also missing, try to find a trusted person in whose name relatives or friends could send you cash. This could be the tour operator's representative or the hotel manager.

Go to the consulate

If you have problems with documents abroad, you will have to contact the consulate. There you will be given a certificate of return, which replaces your passport for 15 days. To get this certificate, you will have to enlist the support of compatriots - according to the law, at least three witnesses with Russian passports are often needed to issue a document. The consulate will not be able to help with money, a hotel or a plane ticket.