Disclosure: I may receive a commission for some of the credit card links in this post.
One thing that is always worth doing some pre-planning (in my opinion) is figuring out what credit cards to put in my wallet on an international trip. I generally go with one ATM card, one Visa, one AMEX, one MC, and one wildcard, usually a second Visa. When going international, I don’t want to take too many cards (actually five sounds like a lot now), but I also don’t want to be screwed if a certain card type isn’t accepted or if one of my cards runs into issues.
I’ve been stressed about my decisions a little more because Brazil’s advice to tourists is to just let yourself get robbed if it’s happening. Don’t scream, don’t fight back, etc. With that in mind, I’ve come up with this brilliant plan: I’m bringing two wallets. My first wallet, my real wallet, I’ll only really carry to and from Brazil. In there, I’ll have my ATM card (Fidelity cash card), my Chase Ink Plus, AMEX Platinum, and Barclaycard Arrival Plus World MasterCard®.
My second wallet will be my “throwaway” wallet, aka, the I might be getting mugged here have my wallet wallet. In there I’ll have one real card (Chase Sapphire Preferred), a couple of expired cards, and some cash. That’s the wallet I’ll probably carry around with me the majority of the time in Brazil. If I’m carrying a fake wallet, where will my real money go? In a handy dandy money belt of course. I feel like they are essential to have – not only in Brazil, but we use them in Europe, Asia, Newark – everywhere! (Just kidding, Newark. New Jersey 4 Lyfe.) So I’ll have some money, another card, and the copy of my passport (and game tickets) in there. Anyway, that’s my thinking right now – I still have a few days so I might change my mind – but that’s how I’m leaning for now! Three days to go. WOO! P.S. – USA!!!
Other Posts in this Series
Getting Pumped, Getting Prepared
Finally Here! First Impressions
Fears Finally Realized on the Long Way Back