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Old 11-28-2017, 09:54 AM   #1
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Banking and Cash ??

Jan 2019, I plan on cruising and living up and down
the FL panhandle and cruising the FL west coast for 8 weeks.

How do you get cash ?
Set up with an established FL bank and set up a ATM.
Just keep my local bank in Iowa and get a debit card
or just bring a lot of cash to last 8 weeks?

Or just go credit card most of the way?

Thanks
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Old 11-28-2017, 10:05 AM   #2
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We use credit cards and ATMs. No need for a different bank account. But I would recommend having at least two separate credit cards in case one gets compromised and shut down.
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Old 11-28-2017, 10:08 AM   #3
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I am not cruising, but I am "forced" to use cash only about once every 2 months or so.

I have ONE credit card onto which everything goes - even a 69 cent cup of coffee at the gas station (the looks are priceless). Get 1.5% of that back each month.

Never use the ATM unless I am forced to have cash for something.

I assume nothing will change when I shove off in a year.
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Old 11-28-2017, 10:08 AM   #4
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I usually do a month trip. Carry two cards, one credit, one debit. And carry about $500-$1k in cash. At end of trip, still have most of the cash. Getting a second credit card is probably a good idea. Dockage, fuel, grub, restaurants all go on plastic.
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Old 11-28-2017, 10:11 AM   #5
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Cash for tips at marinas and fuel docks
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Old 11-28-2017, 10:16 AM   #6
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Yes, that is what I'm thinking,
cash for tips, and an occasional beer.
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Old 11-28-2017, 10:27 AM   #7
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Carry the amount of cash you use per week times the duration.

Not much different, but you might consider a stack of $5 s for tips at marinas pumpouts, several rolls of quarters for laundry, walking around pocket money for purchases less than $5.....

Also once and awhile you get discounted fuel for cash...but that you can plan ahead for usually.
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Old 11-28-2017, 10:47 AM   #8
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We use credit cards and ATMs. No need for a different bank account. But I would recommend having at least two separate credit cards in case one gets compromised and shut down.
That happened to me and my "second" card was a Discover card. For some reason, not every place accepts Discover cards. We called the other card company and got them to send new cards wo a marina we planned to visit for a couple days. We also told the marina about the cards being delivered.

As for cash, we carry some but use credit cards whenever possible. Walmart and many other stores will give cash back on a credit cad transaction so when you shop you can get $60 or so back.

We keep $5 bills for tips and rolls of quarters for laundry although some of the newer laundry machines take credit cards or bills.
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Old 11-28-2017, 10:49 AM   #9
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It is one thing to keep cash onboard but where to hide it.
I had installed a small safe but I removed that when I installed the 3rd house battery.
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Old 11-28-2017, 11:43 AM   #10
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Havent found that hiding it more than out of plain sight is necesary in east coast US cruising.

Most every cruiser on these various forums reports little or no crime.
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Old 11-28-2017, 11:49 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ctbarbarian View Post
Jan 2019, I plan on cruising and living up and down
the FL panhandle and cruising the FL west coast for 8 weeks.

How do you get cash ?
Set up with an established FL bank and set up a ATM.
Just keep my local bank in Iowa and get a debit card
or just bring a lot of cash to last 8 weeks?

Or just go credit card most of the way?

Thanks
We use credit cards for everything possible, even small purchases. It's the only way I know to really manage and budget as otherwise "miscellaneous" becomes a large area of expense. I would always have at least two Visa and/or Mastercard credit cards. Discover and American Express are not accepted everywhere.

You're not leaving the planet. Every area you're in will have ATM's. I'd get a Debit Card, carry a basic level of cash, and then replenish if you need to. Our main use of cash is tips.

A couple of protective pieces of advice.

1. Use debit cards only for ATM's. Do not use them in other places. If they get compromised, you haven't simply gotten a charge that you can easily dispute but you've had money taken from your checking account. Debit cards carry significantly greater risk than credit cards.
2. Keep minimum amounts in your checking accounts. Transfer money from savings or other as needed. Minimize your risk.
3. Do no sign up for overdraft protection. If compromised, that simply increases your exposure so suddenly not just your checking account is wiped out but savings hit too.
4. Set up extensive alerts on all your bank accounts and credit cards. The banks do a pretty good job of being on top of potential fraud but you can do even more. Get text messages sent to you on anything in your alerts. Now, don't set the alerts high so that you don't get messages. Set them low and get lots of messages and then you can determine it's all legitimate. For instance, we very seldom write checks of any amount so have any check over $100 alerting. We don't use the debit card except at ATM's so have alert on any charge to the debit card. Have alerts of ATM withdrawals over $300 although we often make more, just as a safety precaution.
5. Go online and check your accounts regularly. Daily is ideal but we don't do it that frequently. At least once a week though. I've caught things I otherwise would not have. Once was an $80 charge (so below alerts) to someone I'd never heard of. I called the number and no answer and googled and clearly not someone I dealt with. Charge disputed, card cancelled, new card arrived FEDEX the following morning. Also, the $0.01 or $1 authorization attempts. While occasionally legitimate, they're most often fishing expeditions by fraudsters to see if the card information will work before making large charges. I had one of those about a year ago, cancelled card, new one the following morning.
6. Limit any automatic charges to your cards to the bare minimum. I know to protect yourself against insurance cancellations they are useful. However, when you're dealing with others and varying monthly charges, the chance of errors over time is significant. People have suddenly had $10,000 electric bill charges. I knew someone with their card on file at a pharmacy and they picked up prescriptions. The pharmacy had failed to run their insurance and charged them $750.

Banking is easy and accessible today, online and mobile. Take full advantage.
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Old 11-28-2017, 11:58 AM   #12
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We use credit cards for everything possible, even small purchases. It's the only way I know to really manage and budget as otherwise "miscellaneous" becomes a large area of expense. I would always have at least two Visa and/or Mastercard credit cards. Discover and American Express are not accepted everywhere.

You're not leaving the planet. Every area you're in will have ATM's. I'd get a Debit Card, carry a basic level of cash, and then replenish if you need to. Our main use of cash is tips.

A couple of protective pieces of advice.

1. Use debit cards only for ATM's. Do not use them in other places. If they get compromised, you haven't simply gotten a charge that you can easily dispute but you've had money taken from your checking account. Debit cards carry significantly greater risk than credit cards.
2. Keep minimum amounts in your checking accounts. Transfer money from savings or other as needed. Minimize your risk.
3. Do no sign up for overdraft protection. If compromised, that simply increases your exposure so suddenly not just your checking account is wiped out but savings hit too.
4. Set up extensive alerts on all your bank accounts and credit cards. The banks do a pretty good job of being on top of potential fraud but you can do even more. Get text messages sent to you on anything in your alerts. Now, don't set the alerts high so that you don't get messages. Set them low and get lots of messages and then you can determine it's all legitimate. For instance, we very seldom write checks of any amount so have any check over $100 alerting. We don't use the debit card except at ATM's so have alert on any charge to the debit card. Have alerts of ATM withdrawals over $300 although we often make more, just as a safety precaution.
5. Go online and check your accounts regularly. Daily is ideal but we don't do it that frequently. At least once a week though. I've caught things I otherwise would not have. Once was an $80 charge (so below alerts) to someone I'd never heard of. I called the number and no answer and googled and clearly not someone I dealt with. Charge disputed, card cancelled, new card arrived FEDEX the following morning. Also, the $0.01 or $1 authorization attempts. While occasionally legitimate, they're most often fishing expeditions by fraudsters to see if the card information will work before making large charges. I had one of those about a year ago, cancelled card, new one the following morning.
6. Limit any automatic charges to your cards to the bare minimum. I know to protect yourself against insurance cancellations they are useful. However, when you're dealing with others and varying monthly charges, the chance of errors over time is significant. People have suddenly had $10,000 electric bill charges. I knew someone with their card on file at a pharmacy and they picked up prescriptions. The pharmacy had failed to run their insurance and charged them $750.

Banking is easy and accessible today, online and mobile. Take full advantage.
One new thing credit cards are doing is allowing you to set up a text/email when the card number is used for a purchase and not present at the time. This is a VERY nice feature and I have it turned on all the time. This would automatically accomplish your #5 above.
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Old 11-28-2017, 12:03 PM   #13
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One new thing credit cards are doing is allowing you to set up a text/email when the card number is used for a purchase and not present at the time. This is a VERY nice feature and I have it turned on all the time. This would automatically accomplish your #5 above.
Yes, that's within the alerts area too. Easy enough to set up on your account.
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Old 11-28-2017, 02:52 PM   #14
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We're finishing soon a round the world trip (by air) everywhere we've been has ATM's, BUT watch out for excess charges for using them.
Rates of exchange are often not favourable through ATM's if using a different currency.
We watch the rates of exchange and shop around for the best deals.
We also tend to draw a cash lump sum and then pay for items by cash as in America we've founds tips added on to a card transaction even after we've given a cash tip.
Cash rules, less fraud and no tracking with cash.
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Old 11-28-2017, 04:10 PM   #15
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Don't forget to notify your bank that you will be traveling, and the areas you will be in. That prevents your bank from stopping a legitimate purchase because they suspected fraud.
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Old 11-29-2017, 05:50 AM   #16
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With card readers and on line scams,, the PIA of correcting any problem, hours , is not worth the effort, especially away from home, on a vacation cruse..

"or just bring a lot of cash to last 8 weeks"

You bet, in many places paying cash can save the sales tax , and many times more , which beats 1% or 2% from the banksters.

CASH IS KING.
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Old 11-29-2017, 06:03 AM   #17
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Don't forget to notify your bank that you will be traveling, and the areas you will be in. That prevents your bank from stopping a legitimate purchase because they suspected fraud.
It may not prevent them, but it may delay the purchase till phone calls or emails/texts go back and forth.

Already happened 2X in a month and a half on my trip so far. Every time one of the fraud parameters are tripped, and according to my bank, just last month a bunch of new fraud regulations went into effect.
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Old 11-29-2017, 08:25 AM   #18
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Just a note on the Discover card. I have had it since 1988 when Sears was pushing them. My experience with the Discover card is that customer service is superior to my Master Card and the agents seem to have English as their first language. Also, for some reason, it has only been compromised once while the Master Card is at least once a year.

Getting the Master Card replaced while on our cruise was so annoying I insisted that my wife do it. It took several calls and several dropped calls (on their part).
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Old 11-29-2017, 08:31 AM   #19
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My experience with the Discover card is that customer service is superior to my Master Card and the agents seem to have English as their first language. Also, for some reason, it has only been compromised once while the Master Card is at least once a year.
Very similar to my experience. I've also found their fraud detection to be very good with no false-positives.
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Old 11-29-2017, 08:39 AM   #20
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I don't think anyone is arguing against the quality of Discover, just the fact that they are not as widely accepted.
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