My friend and I are planning on going all throughout Europe this summer and we're wondering what the most secure option would be for our money...be it a debit card that links back to our banking account back home, travellers checks, etc. Also, who all that has traveled has had problems with being robbed or know people who have encountered this problem. Thanks!
A debit card is your best option and most countries in Europe have plenty of ATMs, but its a good idea to take some travellers cheques and keep a little cash too - cause you never know when you're gonna get stuck away from the beaten track.
I reckon the chance of being robbed, at least in most countries in Europe, is at least as slim as most of the USA. You'll need to keep an eye out of pickpockets in busy tourist places and use general common sense - the only friend of mine who has been robbed travlling in Europe had decided to sleep on a park bench in Rome rather than shell out for a hostel .
Some places are worse than others so just be careful when you are there. Top of my list would be Las Ramblas in Barcelona as that was where I was robbed, but if you head along the Damrak in Amsterdam there are a few dodgy characters along there as well & I'm sure others here can post places where you need to be careful.
Probably the best piece of advice I can give is don't keep your cards & money in the same pocket and if you can keep at least 1 card or some emergency funding in a safe if available.
first off yeah Barclenoa is a high chance of theft - my friend was robbed twice there in 2 weeks. Las Ramblas is very dodgy for this.
And this topic was posted about 6 months ago - and I was the only one who suggested Travellers Checks and still hold to my convictions.
ATMs are everywhere but dont always work AND do eat ur card. I just had my bank card eaten in scotland and its a Bank Of Scotland card.
And was just in Austria and Germany where always atleast one of my cards if not both (I have a Scottish and American Bank Card) didnot work in the machines. So bec areful, hav back up money - iv gone thru entire countries with no luck with my ATM
I had a stash of TC to live off for a while luckily
what about a international card where you can get money from every atm who has a mastercard of visa sign on it?
Personally, I'd also be a little wary of leaving stuff in safes/lockers at hostel receptions. I've heard a few stories about stuff going missing... nothing thats happened to me though (I don't use them) so I can't claim its hard fact!
The best thing to do, IMHO, is to not carry too much cash on you, get money out from cash machines (using a debit/credit card) if and when you need it. I've stopped using traveller's cheques because I'm sick of getting ripped off by the commission fee - might as well pay the £2 the cash machine charges and get the money you need at your own convinience..
Normally bank cards are not eaten by atm machines it could happen but it's not normal. It could happen that it takes a while before you get it back from the machine. When i was still doing some work as a atm technician i noticed that it sometimes can take up to 10 minutes for a machine gives your card back (this happens when the machine looses contact with the bank computers.
So don't worry about that and just wait for a bit.....
i have only ever travelled with my credit cards - coz debit cards cant always be used everywhere - and sometimes the charges to get money out are extortion.
with a credit card - if the balance is positive - then you can normally get a cheaper cash advance fee. and you can use it to buy stuff so you dont have to carry so much cash - with debit cards - they arent always accepted everywhere.
ALWAYS take more than one credit card - i lost one of mine - and was so glad that i had a back up - i NEVER thought i would lose a credit card in another country.