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Travel Money: What to Take on a Trip
When packing for a trip, less is more. Pack half as much as you can carry, and bring
twice as much money as you think you’ll need. Of course you don’t need to carry
twice as much money. But you should have it accessible in case you need it.
Occasions may arise in which cash is needed to pay a tip or taxi fare, or for merchant
locations that don’t accept credit cards. How much cash you should carry depends
on where you’re headed and how easily you’ll be able to find ATMs. Use our AllianceOne System or visit Visa.com to locate ATMs on your travel route or destination.
ATM/Visa® Debit Cards
You can use your UW Credit Union ATM/debit card at many ATMs and retail locations.
Remember to take our lost/stolen phone
numbers with you or visit uwcu.org in case your cards are lost or stolen.
Credit cards can be used for purchases and for cash. It makes sense to carry both
your UW Credit Union Visa debit card and credit card in case one is demagnetized.
Be sure your cards won’t expire before your trip ends, and know your available account
balance and credit limit.
If lost or stolen, you can get them replaced. However, if you’re exchanging them
for foreign currency, you will typically get a lower exchange rate than if you use
a credit card or debit card. Stop by any of our branch locations to pick up traveler’s
checks for your trip. These are free for Premium Checking accounts.
Before You Depart
Make two photocopies of your airline tickets, credit and debit cards (front and
back), driver’s license and passport identification page, and traveler’s checks
serial numbers. Leave one copy with trusted family or friends, and pack the other
in a separate place from where you carry your valuables. (As you cash traveler’s
checks, cross them off the list.) Having all these important numbers handy makes
it easier to report items that are lost or stolen.
What to Leave Behind
- Valuable or expensive-looking jewelry
- Irreplaceable family heirlooms
- All unnecessary credit cards
- Social Security card, library cards and similar items you may routinely carry in
Whatever combination of spending power you take, be sure to keep everything safely
concealed in a money belt or neck pouch.