The ultimate finance packing list

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Pack smart for your summer holiday with our personal finance packing list

Summer holiday season is here which means one thing: packing. You may have remembered your suncream, sunhat and a thousand pairs of socks, but have you considered all of your finance to-dos?

To help with this, we’ve prepared a finance packing list. So, grab your suitcase and pen and get ready to tick everything off...

Finance packing list

Foreign currency exchange

If you’re going abroad, consider exchanging cash before you leave so you have the local currency to spend when you arrive. The amount of physical cash you bring depends on several factors including destination, budget and security considerations. Once you know how much you’re exchanging, research the rates and fees to get the best possible deal and make sure you go through an official bureau de change. Also try to avoid getting your travel money at the airport as it’s usually more expensive.

Transfer your holiday spending from your savings account

This allows you to know exactly how much money you have to spend and means you don’t need to worry about trying to access your account from abroad.

Saving for your next holiday? Consider one of our easy access accounts, nickname it ‘Holiday fund’ and get saving.

Review your phone contract to understand roaming charges 

It could be cheaper to buy a sim card when you arrive at the location. If you decide to use your own sim, consider adding a spend cap to help avoid unexpected roaming costs.

Create a budget for your daily spending

To avoid overspending, divide your holiday savings by the number of days you’re away to get an approximate daily spending budget. You can then adjust depending on your priorities for each day. For example, maybe you’re planning to hit the slides at a water park, or visit a museum, in which case, allocate more of your daily budget to these special events, and consider a cheaper activity-free day to balance it out.

Read more about how to succeed at budgeting.

Check whether your spending card charges fees when using abroad 

Some credit and debit card providers may charge you when buying something in a foreign currency. Before your travels, check with your bank and credit card companies to see what travel fees they may charge. A good place to start is by reviewing your card’s website or terms and conditions. 

Check if you need to tell your bank that you're planning to use your card abroad

Some providers may ask you to set a travel notice to prevent unnecessary fraud suspicions. Check if this applies to you and send the notification before you leave.

Don’t forget about travel insurance

Make sure you choose a policy with suitable cover for the activities that you'll be doing and compare providers for the best deal.

Build an emergency fund

Holidays can be unpredictable. By setting aside a portion of your holiday savings for an emergency, you’ll build a safety net to be better prepared for the unexpected.

Read more about emergency funds.

Turn off your utilities at home to save money on bills

It may seem obvious, but don’t forget to turn off your utilities and appropriate electrical items before you leave. You’ll be thankful for the pennies saved when you get home!

Going away with friends? Set up a group spending tracker to make paying back seamless

Dinner here, a drink there, and before you know it, you’ve lost track of who owes who what. We’ve all been there. For stress-free paybacks, consider using a bill-split app. Everyone adds in their expenses and at the end of the trip, the tool works out exactly who owes whom what. 

The final word

Finances are probably the last thing you want to think about when you’re on holiday. Completing this checklist before you head away will help you spend less time thinking about money, and more time making memories.

This article has been prepared with care; however, it is only intended to highlight issues and it is not intended to be comprehensive.

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