15 Things You Shouldn’t Carry in Your Travel Wallet. When you’re traveling abroad, you need to buy a bunch of special stuff to navigate without worrying. One of the top things people suggest is that you buy a travel wallet. These are special wallets that allow you to carry pretty much everything you need in one easy-to-use pouch, so you don’t have to wag around a huge bag anytime you want to walk somewhere.
Your Social Security Card
When it comes to what not to carry, ID theft experts say the Social Security card is the absolute worst. Your Social Security Number is the only thing a skilled identity thief needs to begin opening credit cards or taking out loans in your name. Never carry your card with you; try to memorize the number instead.
Any time you know you won’t need to show your passport, leave it somewhere protected, like a hotel safe. Make photocopies of your passport and leave those in the safe, too. This makes it easier to replace your passport if it’s lost or stolen.
Checks have a remarkable amount of information on them, including your account number, routing number, and home address. The best method for carrying checks is to have only one on you at a time, if possible.
Large Amounts of Cash
The rule goes “only carry as much cash as you’re willing to lose.” Don’t fall prey to petty criminals cutting your purse strings or lifting your wallet and making off with your whole vacation fund. Opening your wallet to reveal an excess of cash will make you a prime target.
Your Unprotected Phone
If pickpockets lift a phone with no security code, they could easily gain access to bank accounts, email addresses, and lots of other private information. Make sure to put some type of lock code on your phone when traveling. That way, even if it’s lost or stolen, it’ll be nothing more than an expensive paperweight to whoever finds it.
You may want to show off your new engagement ring or your grandmother’s necklace in your travel photos, but these things will make you easy targets for pickpockets. Leave the irreplaceable stuff at home.
A Wallet Ninja
Multi-tools are great, but other countries are a little more strict about what is considered a weapon. If you’re going anywhere that may have security, leave your Wallet Ninja or similar tool out of your travel wallet. You’ll avoid awkward encounters at the metal detector if you do.
I know it’s handy to keep your plethora of passwords written down and on you at all times, but it could be dangerous if you aren’t in a place you are used to. If they’re nabbed, thieves could make purchases on your accounts and even steal your identity.
If lost or stolen, you may think the thief won’t know where to use the key. What’s the big deal? But, if your keys have been stolen, other information probably has as well. It’s best to play it safe and leave these at home.
You may not work anywhere top secret, but work IDs generally cost quite a bit to replace if you lose them. Plus, if you do work somewhere important, you don’t want to be the one who lets information get into the wrong hands.
It may seem normal to carry money in a wallet, but when it gets lost, you’re going to be upset that the two dollar bill your grandfather gave you was lost as well. Just take an extra precaution and leave these things somewhere safer.
While it is a good idea to have this information handy in an emergency, insurance cards hold a lot of important information that could jeopardize your identity. It’s best to memorize the important information and leave the actual card somewhere secure until you know you’re going to the doctor.
Too Many Credit Cards
Chances are you’ll need a credit card while on vacation. That being said, it’s smart to minimize the number of cards you carry. If you have specific store credit cards, leave those at home unless you know you’re going to that store. Carrying only one or two cards is less risk than carrying four or five.
Your Address Book
This may seem odd, but there have been recent incidents where a thief calls a person’s family member pretending to be that person in a bad situation needing money. While it’s a fairly rare incident, it’s always a good idea to carry around as little information as possible while traveling.
Keep this somewhere safe. If this gets pickpocketed, more skilled thieves may follow you if they know where you’re going and that you have other valuables on you. It sounds paranoid, but better safe than sorry!