Using Your RV
We fulltime, travel anywhere/everywhere, sell our RV books, and present seminars. We have bills, use credit cards, carry/use cash, and maintain a bank account. I'm certain you do, too. You can make your travel finances smooth or a hassle. Smooth is better. You always have to deal with money but traveling puts you in some strange circumstances.
If you work or receive some cash—i.e., end up with money in hand—then you must have some way to deal with it. If you are not an account holder, banks will not help you. I once finished a Rally with about $500 in $20 bills from book sales, took these to a local bank (I was not a customer), and asked if they would exchange for some $100-bills. I was told "absolutely not"—unless I opened an account.
Although I had a great bank near our permanent home, we changed to Bank of America (BoA) since they are in most of the states. Now, when we finished a rally, we go to the local BoA and make a deposit. Being able to walk in to any branch is great. BoA's online site is easy and efficient. I pay everything via online banking. It's so rare when we actually write a paper check that we no longer have a paper check register.
I do not use ATMs because of the number of scams associated with them.
What? You don't trust any online bank? Then stop reading this and find another way.
We have two credit cards—VISA and AMEX—so it's easy if they should disappear. We keep a copy of the numbers in a safe place (not in our wallet with the cards).
We carry a limited amount of money and have a "rainy-day" stash hidden in the coach—I think most people do this. It's not any great amount but I want enough to get by in an emergency and if I lost it (e.g., coach burns up), it would not break me. Actually, this thinking is left over from growing up in the 1950s and really no longer applies today if you have a credit card. You can buy virtually everything on a card plus get instant—but costly—cash.
There was an interesting thread on one of the RV e-mail groups about where individuals had found hiding places on their respective coaches. Tucked in your underwear was not one of them! People are pretty creative.
Handle and safeguard your money carefully. When traveling, you are not on your home turf.
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