'A peek inside my overseas wallet - a nerd's guide to what to take..' blog discussion

This is the discussion to link on the back of Martin's blog. Please read the blog first, as this discussion follows it.

Please click 'post reply' to discuss below.


  • Kite2010
    Kite2010 Posts: 4,304
    First Anniversary First Post Home Insurance Hacker! Car Insurance Carver!
    Having a Post Office card is also useful when buying anything from eBay.com which isn't priced in pounds. Pay in dollars and you get a much better rate as the PayPal rate is rubbish.
  • redux
    redux Posts: 22,976
    Name Dropper First Anniversary First Post
    edited 31 July 2013 at 11:14AM
    I have a prepaid debit card with an exchange rate over two (euro) cents per pound better than the one Martin mentions, in fact nil currency loading.

    There's a modest cash advance fee abroad, but even so for amounts over about £80 or so equivalent it would better than using a certain other prepaid card with no fee but a rate 3 cents worse, and better than buying currency from most places here

    Most (though as Martin points out, not quite all) credit cards also have a cash advance fee and start accruing interest straight away, so I'm happy maybe I have a good enough single card option for me to cover spending or occasional cash abroad.

    And no big wallet, just one of those small plastic card carriers (same one I use in UK, in fact) with 2 or 3 debit/credit cards, driving licence and EHIC.

    But that's just me.

    In general though, I wonder if there may be reasons for Martin to consider slightly qualifying his advice to use a credit card for cash advance, even if there is no ATM fee on the one highlighted as the best option for abroad.

    There are discussions elsewhere that some banks have found that taking cash advances is a clue to people who might be having problems and thus more likely to default with them. Some people have suggested that the credit limit might be reduced or scoring of other applications for credit might be adversely affected. Has that happened at all with the cards recommended? Sorry if it's a naive question.

    Given that there aren't all that many credit cards with zero currency loading, I'll stick with the prepaid debit card
  • We have been overseas wallet nerds for years and it saves all the hassle of having to think before we travel! We also add a specs repair kit - very small but very useful. Loyalty cards for European supermarkets, an antiseptic wipe, a credit card sized calculator and one of those thin plastic magnifiers to read the small print (!!!!) as well as getting to splinters etc. A note of emergency numbers in the country we are visiting and contact numbers for home Copies of passports are held in a separate travel wallet with our tickets as well as having all the paperwork on our tablet. And if we are traveling to less reliable countries we use a body belt and carry an old wallet with a few notes and expired credit cards.;)
This discussion has been closed.
Meet your Ambassadors


  • All Categories
  • 341.7K Banking & Borrowing
  • 249.7K Reduce Debt & Boost Income
  • 449.1K Spending & Discounts
  • 233.8K Work, Benefits & Business
  • 605.9K Mortgages, Homes & Bills
  • 172.3K Life & Family
  • 246.7K Travel & Transport
  • 1.5M Hobbies & Leisure
  • 15.8K Discuss & Feedback
  • 15.1K Coronavirus Support Boards