Money belts. People generally don’t like them. They can be uncomfortable since you have extra stuff under your pants. They can be inconvenient. You have your passport in a safe place, and now some official is asking to see it. But, they are essential. When I was in Barcelona last fall (2015), I was discussing plans for the day with several people at the hostel. In particular, we were discussing the famous La Boqueria (the market). A hostel employee happened to be walking by right then and warned us that was a prime area for pick-pocketing. “Be sure to wear your money belts!” I did just that. I wore my money belt and only had 1 credit card and a little bit of cash buried deep within my bag. A fellow traveler did not take the advice. And he had his wallet stolen that very day.
Since you might end up wearing them more than you think (I slept with mine at a sketchy hostel), you should get a comfortable money belt. I recommend the Eagle Creek undercover money belt.
My top priority when searching for a money belt was size. I’m still baffled as to why, but a lot of money belts you find are large and bulky. I don’t know about you, but I want it to easily slip inside my pants and be comfortable. It isn’t meant to replace a fanny pack. Don’t use it to store your camera and cell phone. The Eagle Creek Undercover Money Belt was one of the few money belts that was small enough but still fit a passport, extra cash, and credit cards easily. Also, the buckle is thin to keep it all streamlined. Yes, I could always feel that I was wearing it. But, I always notice that I’m wearing pants too. So what’s the big deal? In fact, it is comfortable enough that when I had to sleep with it on, it didn’t bother me.
My second priority was comfort. The Eagle Creek Undercover Money Belt has a soft (and adjustable) strap, and the back is a moisture-wicking. Those European cities in the summer can get very hot and humid. That’s why, you certainly don’t want to wear something around your waist that would holds on to the sweat. That’s where the great moisture-wicking back of the Eagle Creek money belt comes in handy.
Another priority was the quality. It would really suck if you had a money belt and the zipper didn’t work properly or the material easily ripped. Not the case here. I haven’t had any issues with it. Nylon ripstop is good stuff.
I haven’t found much to complain about the Eagle Creek Undercover Money Belt. But, I guess if I had to come up with something, it would be lack of organization. It has two pockets which is nice. You can separate your passport from your cash. But it would be even better if it had a couple of slots for holding credit cards.
I obviously recommend the Eagle Creek Undercover Money Belt. I’ve tried a few money belts and even a few money pouches during my travels. This is by far my favorite. I’m not really a fan of money pouches because I think they are too obvious. Unless you are wearing a scarf, someone is going to see it tied around your neck. And when it comes to money belts, I want them small, discrete, and comfortable. This one fits the bills (pun intended).
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