[pct-l] Paying Bills While Thru-hiking

Lyn Turner thelyn at icloud.com
Tue Nov 4 18:17:31 CST 2014

Just to add to the discussion which may help travellers from Outside the USA:  I spent 3 months on the PCT this year (90 day visa). Most of my domestic bills are paid by direct debit (oops, I forgot about Thames Water, but no big deal). My mail when I was on the PCT was redirected to a friend in London who was alerted to looking out for anything urgent.

Otherwise, I found a currency card useful. This is a card you load up before you leave your home country. The benefit is that you don't get charged transaction fees or exchange currency fees, which would both normally swing in when using your card abroad. I loaded mine with £1k sterling before I left, and topped it up on the way. Very convenient and easy to use -- just like your normal debit card and no hidden charges, and the exchange rate is fixed as you buy USD when you load the card. So you know where you are, exchange-rate wise. Which, if like me, you don't care for continually updating your mental arithmetic...

Scottish Lyn

Sent from my iThing

> On 4 Nov 2014, at 15:28, Bob Bankhead <wandering_bob at comcast.net> wrote:
> Tortoise is spot-on! 
> Call the number on the back of each of the credit cards you are taking with
> you. Ask them to place a travel advisory on the card. Tell them the time
> periods and locations to which you will be travelling. If you anticipate
> larger than normal expenditures, also ask them to place a balance advisory
> on the card. You might also inquire about raising your credit limit to the
> maximum possible without having to undergo a credit check, which takes time.
> It is also possible to make an advance payment on the card before you go.
> You can then draw against that amount while you're on the trail, knowing
> your card will not be declined because you exceeded your credit limit or a
> monthly statement was not paid. At the least, pay off any existing balance
> in full before you leave, even if it is before your normal statement date.
> This gives you the card's full credit limit with which to work while on your
> hike. 
> If you also carry a bank debit card (or a credit card that allows cash
> advances), re-evaluate your current maximum daily limit on withdrawals and
> make any needed upward adjustments. 
> Make a copy of each card number, security code, and customer service
> telephone numbers listed on the back. Carry this copy somewhere other than
> where you carry your cards. You'll need them if you lose one of the cards.
> What financial resources to carry with you?
> 1) plastic: I have found it wise to carry at least two plastic cash sources
> - usually my VISA and my bank debit card - at all times. I never know when I
> might suddenly need more cash than I usually carry. 
> 2) $100 in cash - nothing larger than a $20 bill. I carry mostly $5 and $10
> bills
> 3) a $10 roll of quarters - they are worth their weight in gold for pay
> toilets, showers, laundromats, and telephones (if you can find one that
> works). Also good for opening/closing bear cans. 
> 4) Cashier's checks are almost impossible to cash due to counterfeiting. 
> 5) a telephone credit card or pre-paid calling card; VISA does not allow its
> cards to be used for telephone calls from pay phones, and you won't always
> have cellular service on trail.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: pct-l-bounces at backcountry.net [mailto:pct-l-bounces at backcountry.net]
> On Behalf Of Tortoise
> Sent: Tuesday, November 04, 2014 5:48 AM
> To: Tim Umstead
> Cc: PCT-L
> Subject: Re: [pct-l] Paying Bills While Thru-hiking
> Another suggestion. Contact your creditors especially credit card issuers to
> let them know you will be gone for a while. This will ease the situation if
> you have problems. Alerting your card issuers may prevent fraud alerts when
> your usage  changes and  charging pattern changes. 
> You can also leave sign checks with a trusting person who can use them to
> pay reoccurring bills.
> Tortoise
> _______________________________________________
> Pct-L mailing list
> Pct-L at backcountry.net
> To unsubscribe, or change options visit:
> http://mailman.backcountry.net/mailman/listinfo/pct-l
> List Archives:
> http://mailman.backcountry.net/pipermail/pct-l/
> All content is copyrighted by the respective authors. 
> Reproduction is prohibited without express permission.

More information about the Pct-L mailing list