Monday, 15 August 2016

Keeping your travel money safe

RESEARCH reveals that Brits resort to rudimentary tactics for managing their money abroad, with 65 percent admitting to hiding cash in shoes, clothing, or under mattresses when on holiday.

Rob Darby from Escape Travel Card has advice to travellers on how to look after holiday money when abroad:

Carrying cash

To avoid repeatedly paying ATM charges, travellers often opt to carry large amounts of cash, which could make them vulnerable to loss or theft. Using a prepaid currency card however, means that ATM charges can be avoided, removing the need for holidaymakers to carry lots of cash with them and giving them peace of mind.

Local currency or Sterling?

When using a credit or debit card for shopping abroad, tourists are often given the option to pay for the transaction in their own currency rather than the local one – which is portrayed as being more convenient. Rather than the till simply showing the customer what the amount translates to in their domestic currency, it usually uses a less favourable exchange rate meaning the traveller pays extra. Tourists are better off paying in local currency on their prepaid travel card to avoid paying these steeper rates, as this kind of expense can add up during the course of a trip.

Manage your budget online

It’s easy to get carried away when you’re making the most of your time abroad, but it’s important that holidaymakers keep on top of budgets so they don’t leave themselves short at the end of the trip. By using a currency card, such as the Escape Travel Card, that offers a secure online account to manage spending, travellers can stay clued up on their expenditure in the same way they would at home. Using the Escape online cloud account, cardholders can view their balance and statements and top up their account by debit or credit card. They can also check their balance by text with the Escape Travel card and receive low balance alert texts to warn them if they’re funds are running low.

Be safety wise

Preparing for the worst-case scenario is always advised when taking money abroad, and having safety procedures in place will help ease the anxiety of being stranded without cash. The majority of prepaid currency cards see funds held on them directly, meaning that if the card is lost or stolen the funds are taken with the card. But Escape’s unique cloud account offers increased security by allowing funds to be transferred from the card back to the account at any time, keeping spending safe if something should happen to the card. Escape also offers a 24/7 helpline for immediate support and can arrange for funds to be sent to a Moneygram outlet, meaning travellers will never be stranded without access to money. In addition, users can also take advantage of a free SMS service, which can be used to temporarily lock and unlock the card, providing peace of mind if they’re going for a swim and leaving their card in a bag or hotel room.

Be discreet

It is easy to see how holidaymakers can draw attention to themselves rifling through the unfamiliar bank notes of another currency when making a payment. It’s best not to make a scene when doing this and carrying a prepaid currency card means it can be avoided altogether. We advise tourists to be aware of their surroundings when on holiday, and to make sure they take the necessary precautions to ensure that their trip goes off without a hitch.

*The Escape Travel Money Prepaid MasterCard costs £10 to purchase, the fee being refundable if the card is loaded with £100 within 30 days of application. It can be order online at

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