Travellers often having problems using credit cards when they are abroad. Somehow or rather, the international merchants only accept EMV card (Europay, Mastercard and Visa) as EMV card are very popular in foreign countries. Even if you have EMV card, some of the merchants only accept EMV that are locally issued only. Some of the travellers do not have EMV card. They prefer cash as they do not count on EMV card. To them, cash is accepted everywhere and easily used. You just need to have enough local currency and you are able to buy and shop anything you want. This is the primary advantage of paper money despite a little haggling here and there.
However, there are some drawbacks of using cash abroad. Before boarding the plane, it’s important to understand these disadvantages — and how best to address them.
Each Conversion Means You Lose Money
It doesn’t matter what currency or which country are you going. The truth is, whenever you change your money to other currency, you will lose your money. Especially when you change your money at the airport or train kiosks, you will lose more as they tend to have the least competitive exchange rates. However, do not panic because you will always find a solution to a problem. Avoid this problem by changing some money before you go to the airport. Approach the nearest money exchanger; mall or near to your house and get it done before you fly. Once you fly, rely on ATMs or if you have credit card, surely you can use it.
Most ATMs Charge You Twice
Please remember that you will pay twice for withdrawing money from ATM not linked to your bank. For instance you are a Maybank user but you want to withdraw your money from a CIMB ATM. Therefore you will be charged more than usual. However, there are a handful of debit cards that don’t charge withdrawal fees — even when using an ATM machine out of the network.
Losing Money is Easy
When you bring a lot of cash in your pocket, you have to be aware that it is easy to get stolen or lost. Cash is bulky. You will be in trouble if you rely on it too much, so it’s best if you have a credit card around. If you lose card, you can report to your bank but if you lose your cash, you cannot reimburse it. However there are several tips that could reduce the likelihood of losing your money:
- Make a small pocket inside your bra (if you are a female) and put your cash inside the pocket. This may sounds like a granny will do it but it works. Try it!
- Wear a traveller’s belt and keep the cash close to your body
- Do not leave your cash in your hotel room
- Remember that do not trust anyone.
- Withdraw cash in smallest denominations
- If you are a solo traveller, keep your cash and card separate.
- Use e-wallet if you have it or if you do not, install the app in your smartphone. It’s a new way of bringing cash everywhere