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Cool & Safe Travel Documents

17 Jul 2017

 
Guest Post by Peter Rudin-Burgess - Compare Holiday Money.com

Being the person who gets to the front of the check in or security queue and then cannot find your passport or boarding pass is not cool. I personally find it slightly stressful when I am at the airport but the check in and baggage drop is not open yet for my flight. You cannot leave you luggage unattended but at that point you have your main luggage, hand luggage and possibly another bag as well and even buying a cup of coffee and something to eat is logistical juggle.

It is not uncommon for passports and wallets to be left on the counters at the cafés and bars at airports.

One helpful option is to use a travel document pouch. These have come a long way in the last 10 years. There are two common versions. In one the pouch goes around your neck the other is a clutch bag. Both hold your passport, back cards and cash. This means you don’t have to walk around with your wallet in your back pocket. You can drop it inside your shirt or jacket if you really want to. The straps are normally exceptionally strong and often slash proof.

The most modern ones will hold you phone and are RFID proof. I am not sure if anyone has ever had a card skimmed or suffered card fraud using contactless but it is at least in theory possible. These pouches are also waterproof.

Another option with these, if you are using it to hold your phone, at the airport is, should you lose the whole pouch you can always phone it from a different and listen for the phone ringing or use a ‘find my phone’ app to locate the pouch. That is useful if you don’t know which bag you have put your wallet in!

Once you are on holiday the pouch can act as your holiday wallet. You can leave you UK wallet in the room safe and just take the pouch with you. It helps protect you from pick pockets and to some extent bag snatching opportunists. Yes, you may lose your bag but if your money, passport, hotel key and phone are safe then it is less of a blow. Losing everything can ruin a holiday as it can take days to get emergency cash and replacement travel documents. That is time you are not relaxing, in fact the whole process is the very opposite of relaxing!

RFID Pouch

I really think these neck pouches are worth every penny but how much will they set you back? A quick look on Amazon shows a whole range of options for £10 to £15. There are ones that go around your neck, others that you wear like a belt, clutch bags and some that look like kindle cases.

The two places with the highest levels of opportunistic theft crime are Belgium and Spain according to research by Gallup Analytic. This is almost entirely down to crimes committed against tourists. When we are on holiday we are easy targets. We carry more money than the locals and more cash. We spend our time looking up at architecture or out at the view and not paying attention and we tend to drink more and go to the most crowded locations, the literal tourist traps.

If you are planning on flying this summer then I would seriously suggest you consider using a travel pouch or document wallet this year.
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