Traveling for fun or business can mean fun and adventure. It can also bring frustration and stress. When things go well, the trip can result in many enjoyable moments, but plane delays, hotel reservation issues and pickpockets can ruin a terrific trip.
When someone steals your money, it requires a quick fix – replacement credit cards and cash. Obtaining these two things varies in difficulty depending on whether traveling abroad or domestically.
Domestic Travel Money Needs
Perhaps the car broke down, exceeding the amount of available funds with you and the credit cards are maxed out. Maybe a pickpocket lifted the wallet right out of your back pocket or the purse off the back of your chair. Relax. You have options.
First, contact each of the credit card companies to cancel. Call the bank to cancel the debit card on the checking account. This stops the thief from being able to charge anything to any of the accounts. It also protects you from quick charges made to it after the theft. Each organization should mail a new card to the home address listed on the accounts.
Second, report the theft to the police. Make a formal report and obtain a copy of it. This can help document the theft to the credit card companies and bank.
Third, obtain spending money by replacing the stolen funds. While a multitude of ways exist to do this, our many local Western Union locations probably provide the simplest solution. Simply phone a friend or family member to request emergency funds. Find the nearest Western Union agent to your and their location. Explain the problem to the friend or family member and have them send money via Western Union.
International Travel Money Needs
As scary as a sudden need for money is domestically, it can become downright terrifying if you travel overseas and find your wallet or purse stolen. You need to follow the same three steps as above, but you also need to do a few more things to get your trip back on track.
Visit the local consulate or embassy for your country. They can explain how to replace personal identification like your passport, driver’s license and Social Security card. In many locations, you can obtain an emergency passport replacement in 24 hours. It is good for one year.
Understand the difference between domestic and international wire transfers. In a domestic transfer, it is dollars to dollars or pesos to pesos or Euro to Euro. International wire transfers include a foreign exchange rate because the initiating currency differs from the ending currency. Check the exchange rate in advance to get an idea of how much money you will receive. Currency rates change on a daily basis, so the exchange rate from the day of arrival and exchange of the stolen funds will differ from the current rate.
Also, take into account the transfer fees. These vary according to the payment method used. Learn the transfer fees upfront using the Western Union app or website. For example, a transfer from the US to Belize of $500 incurs a $56.50 transfer fee if the payer uses a credit card, but only a $9 fee using a bank account or $7 fee if they visit the store and make payment in person. The app and website also show the exchange rate. The day this was written that was $1 USD to $2 BZD.
Reasons to Use Western Union
- The money travels fast. In fifteen minutes, a payment from a friend or family member can complete, arriving to the location where you wait.
- Western Union offers more than 500,000 locations in more than 200 countries and territories. We have a location near you and near your friend or family member.
- Our agents will provide you the funds in one of three methods – on a debit card we provide, directly to your bank account or in cash. It’s your choice.
In Areas of No Western Union
Do not panic if there is no Western Union location in the vicinity. We try to locate them in diverse areas, but we’re not everywhere yet. You still have other options for obtaining money quickly. You can:
- have a friend or family member bank transfer or wire transfer the funds to a local bank in the travel area.
- obtain an online loan and have the funds electronically transferred to a reloadable debit card you purchase locally,
- have a friend or family member overnight a reloadable debit card via FedEx or DHL.
You can use the business center in your hotel to access the Internet or ask for help doing so at the embassy or consulate.
There may be nothing as frightening as suddenly finding yourself in a strange location with no funds. Call Western Union immediately though or visit the website. With your family member or friend, we can get the money you need to you fast and your adventure can continue enjoyably.