We work and save in order to jet off to another adventure.
Taking steps to ensure this hard-earned money is safe and manageable during your travels is therefore very important.
It is to help you with exactly this that we have reached out to our backpacking veterans and created this guide to managing money while on the road.
Know of any other foolproof methods? Let us know!
1. Prepare a budget
This goes without saying, but a determination to be thrifty isn’t going to help you much unless you have a budget planned out.
Do however remember to round numbers off and have some comfort money to fall back on (in case of an emergency).
Remember- failing to plan is planning to fail.
2. Open an account
If you haven’t already, the first step to managing your money is to entrust it with a partner such as a bank. We recommend opting for one with a global presence in order to take advantage of low or no international transaction fees.
Make sure you have a savings account and a current account.
The savings account is where we recommend that you put most of your funds. The current account is the one that can be used for withdrawals.
3. Get on with the technology
The easiest way to manage your money whilst traveling is using online banking.
It is through this that you can move funds from your savings to your current account.
Do however be careful when conducting the financial transactions and surfing the internet in foreign destinations. Read our guide on how to be safe online during your travels here.
4. Go plastic
We recommend obtaining at least 2 debit cards and credit cards for your travels.
Why 4 you ask? Because accidents happen and you might lose or be robbed of your card.
Do however inform your bank of your impending travels in order to not have your account blocked due to suspicious foreign withdrawals.
You might also want to make sure that your cards have 2-factor authorization to prevent them from being used by anyone other than yourself.
5. Have a backup person
You might balk at this, but sometimes it’s best to appoint someone you trust with your bank affairs in case something goes amiss when you are abroad.
Case in point- you get robbed of all your funds are left stranded in a foreign land. The guardian you appointed could then head over to the bank, report the crime and then send new debit and credit cards to replace the ones you were robbed of.
6. Watch your cash
Carrying an abundance of cash on you is not recommended as pickpockets and scammers are ever-present.
We recommend taking a look at our guide to avoiding pickpockets.
7. Watch out for ATMs
Certain destinations might not have ATMs as you might be used.
It is, therefore, best to do some research on the area you will be venturing out to and have enough cash to last.
8. Know the exchange rates
It is good to know the exchange rates and convert them to your local currency in your head till you get to grips with the local currency.
This will prevent overspending or unnecessary discomforts (why get a cheap sleeper ticket when you can easily afford an upgrade?).