People travel for many reason, both for business and for pleasure, every single day. Most people are able to travel without incident, but for a few, a simple trip becomes a huge hassle. What we’re speaking about, of course, is losing your wallet while traveling overseas. Losing your wallet anywhere is a big deal, but losing it in another country gives you a strict time limit for recovering it before you fly back home.

Always Travel Prepared

The best thing you can do when you travel is travel prepared. One way you can prepare is by making colour copies of your important documents and cards. ATM card, credit card, passport, IDs, all should be copied. Keep a copy with you but not in your wallet. Keep another copy at home, and if possible, email a copy to yourself or a friend so you have digital access. It’s much easier to replace your documents if you have high-quality copies.

Safeguard These Copies

The last thing you want is to not lose your wallet and instead lose the photocopies of your card information. That information is just as dangerous as the card itself, if a little less convenient to use. Don’t keep it in an obvious place in your luggage, because you never know who has access to your bags when you can’t see them. Find a small hiding place to keep your copies. In a shoe or sewn into clothing, hidden in secret pockets or inside electronics you keep on you at all times, and other such places make good hiding spots.

Prune Your Wallet

Before you travel, take anything out of your wallet that you won’t need. This includes any of those rewards cards for local businesses, extra forms of ID you should carry separately, or secondary credit cards or ATM cards. Take only the bare minimum of what you need so you don’t have to worry about losing everything important.

Carry a Decoy

This one is more applicable if you’re traveling in a dangerous location and you worry about being mugged, but it also worked for any travel. Carry a wallet with a few dollars in it and if you have one, an expired credit card. This way you have something to produce if a thief attempts to mug you, and you can escape without harm and with your primary wallet intact.

Know Your Bank Policies

Especially important if you lose your credit card or ATM card, you’ll want to know your banking policies. Figure out how you can contact them if the worst happens. If they have local branches, even better. If not, look into their contact numbers and hours. Find out what needs to be canceled, what needs to be replaced, and how long it will take. Know your account and card numbers, and be ready to file a police report if required.

Locate a Consulate

Whatever your home country is, there’s probably a consulate or embassy nearby. Find out their location and hours of operation. This is primarily where you’d go if you lose your passport, but they can often direct you to the proper authorities to help with other lost items.

Have Another Cash Resource

One simple thing to do is to carry your cash, or at least some of your cash, in a separate location from your wallet. If you don’t like carrying cash, Western Union has a presence in nearly any location you could travel. They’re always an option for friends and family to send emergency money. If you have your credit card company’s contact number, you can often call them for a cash advance. It might cost you, but it will get you out of a tough situation.

Contact Your Bank

This one is obvious, but if you lose a credit card, you should immediately call the contact number for the credit company and let them know. While it can be a huge hassle to deal without the card in the case that you find it, if it’s truly stolen you won’t want to deal with someone else using it. Having your card numbers and expiration date from a photocopy helps this process immensely. The sooner you cancel the card, the less likely it is for anyone to make fraudulent purchases using it.

With these few simple tips and things to keep in mind, it’s easier to travel with less stress. It also becomes much easier to deal with the loss of these important items if you have backups and contact numbers.

 

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Whether you are buying a home in the sun to retire in, opening a new business or investing in a property as a means of extra income, any type of larger financial transaction completed in another country comes with inherent risks.  So it is crucial that you safeguard your money whilst abroad.  Here are a few pointers on how stay financially safe in another country.

Firstly, do your research and get to grips with the details of local laws and regulations.  Whatever endeavour you undertake, impartial legal professionals in the local country should be sought out.  They can advise you on local land taxes and estate agency fees, which along with the fee for the legal advice itself, need to be factored into the total cost of your investment.

Secondly, you need to consider the method with which you intend to complete your major transactions, such as the buying of a house or paying ground rent and utilities.  All local transactions will need to be paid for in the local currency, so before you do anything you need to consider the best way to do this, as it will have a significant impact on the total cost of your venture.

Safe Trip

Opening an account with a foreign exchange specialist like currenciesdirect.com can help property buyers obtain the best exchange rates on currencies such as dollars to pounds, which on large transactions will yield substantial savings.  A favourable deal on an exchange rate could help lower the real cost of the investment, meaning extra cash for renovation, repairs and the costs of moving.

Thirdly, seek out impartial advice from a UK-based Independent Financial Advisor (IFA) with multi-jurisdictional experience.  If you are going to be profiting from your investment, have you got the right tax scheme in place?  If you are moving abroad for any substantial part of the year then your IFA will advise you the best jurisdiction to domicile any income in order to make it more tax efficient.

Also, a crucial point to note is that, if you are paying for developments to be built on as build-as-you-pay basis, then check the reputation of the construction companies and make sure you trust your representative in the local country.  Do not be talked in to paying more up front than is necessary, especially if progress on the build is not where it should be.

Fourthly, you need to consider how you might want to access any investments and pensions currently held in the UK.  If you are entitled to a state pension and you plan to live outside of the UK for any substantial period of time each year, then you can still draw it but you will only be entitled to any increases if you live in the EEA.

Any private pensions and investments can be continued as they are but access to them may be restricted depending on the agreement you have in place.  Check the details before you leave so you are not trying to arrange for the release of funds form a foreign country.

A foreign exchange account is a useful tool if you have investments you want to liquidise in order to get set up in your new place abroad.  They can also save you a small fortune when regular payments in local currency.  Any sellers, estate agents, legal professionals, local government, removals and utility companies will all need to be paid and if you use your regular bank account to do this, you are likely to get unfavourable exchange rates and be charged substantial amounts in transaction fees, so plan ahead and open an account that specialises in the currency conversion you want, such as dollars to pounds or pounds to euros.

safe

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