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The 5 Most Efficient Ways to Carry Money While Traveling Overseas

Updated on Apr 12, 2022
Passport, money and other travel essentials

We all need cash when travelling abroad, but with so many options how do you know what's safest, cheapest and best. Here are the top five options to carry your cash.

Cash Before You Go

You can withdraw money before you go. The snags are you carry around large amounts of money which you need to protect. Some companies also hack you better deals than others with online companies like Travelex and ICE charging you excellent rates but steep delivery costs if your money is too lean. Airports charge the most. Your best offline deals tend to come from the Post Office which offers 0% commission and decent rates.

Traveler's Checks

Money can be converted into traveler's checks that can - big plus - immediately be cancelled if they're lost or stolen. The major disadvantage is that you're charged commission when you buy them and charged an extra rate when you convert them into foreign currency.

Pre-Paid Cards

Pre-paid cards are simple. You upload any sort of currency on them and use the card for ATMs or shopping while abroad. You can, also, top the card up online or by phone. The downside is that most of these cards come with hefty fees for using in any way, so make sure sure you read the fine print before swiping them.

Credit Cards

You can always use your regular credit card by swiping the plastic as normal. Just make sure you use one that is designed for using abroad. Swiping the wrong kind in a foreign country can leave you with huge interest, hefty loading fees and boggling rates - plus a fee of $4 each time you swipe the card.

Third Party Transfers

Third party transfer are companies like Remit Compare where you transfer your money to a domestic account in the country of your destination before you leave. It's easy to do this, the processing  takes several hours to a day, and the cost is cheaper than using banks or Credit Unions to transfer your money.

You have various options for carrying around cash when you travel. Money is the easiest, but has its obvious disadvantages.  Travelers checks and pre-paid cards are convenient but costly; many find them not worth the hassle. Credit cards may work if used wisely, while third party transfer companies could work as well, as long as you choose the right one and compare rates. 

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