The Best Ways To Travel With Money
If you are planning a European vacation or Caribbean getaway, you are likely wondering what form of currency you should take along - traveler's checks, cash, debit cards or credit cards. While the best option may be dependent on your destination and length of stay, some of these could prove more beneficial than others.
In general, it is a good idea to take some cash. Consider stopping by a currency exchange center before your departure so you can have some American bills as well as some native currency to take wherever you're visiting. However, the United States Department of State advises you to not carry too much cash, so bring just enough for transportation and small purchases.
According to the travel experts at AAA, traveler's checks are typically a safe way of spending money on international trips. It may be a good idea to order a few ahead of time as a backup because they can usually be replaced in a day or two if lost. Although, you will probably not want to use them as your primary method of currency because they must be cashed during banking hours, which can be inconvenient while traveling.
Many feel debit and credit cards are the best option while overseas. Travel expert Rick Steves says cash machines, or ATMs, are available throughout Europe and can be used just like your ATM at home. It is a good idea to check with your bank and credit card companies before leaving to find out what fees may apply and to let them know you will be traveling.
USA Today reports Capital One charges some of the lowest fees, followed by USAA and American Express. No matter which card you decide to primarily use, always bring backup cards if possible just in case.