If you’ve scanned our travel security page, you know how important money belts are. They protect your hard-to-replace items (money, passport, credit cards, etc) from thieves, and if, like me, you’re prone to losing things, from yourself too. But there are lots of different money belts out there. Luckily for you, I decided to write this guide to help you sort through the different kinds of money belts and pick the one that does what you need your money belt to do.
The first choice you have to make is between the two main kinds of money belts – belt style or pouch style.
Belt-style money belts are basically indistinguishable from a normal belt until you flip them around and look at the back. That’s where you’ll find a zipper that allows you to hide folded-up cash (but not much else).
These are the type money belts most travelers pick. They basically consist of a small, thin pouch that holds cash, passport, credit cards, and anything else that’s hard to replace when you’re on the road. And, although this is what most travelers are talking about when they use the term “money belts,” they don’t always involve a belt.
Here are my picks for the best money belts in each of the various styles.
This is a pouch-style money belt for the 21st century. It’s made of ultra-thin, breathable fabric, and it’s just exactly big enough to hold a passport, credit cards, and some emergency cash. And in this age of e-tickets and universally-accepted ATM cards, that’s all you’ll need.
Some people prefer to have their money belt slung around their neck instead of around their waist. Personally, I prefer the waist style, but if you’re more comfortable with the around-the-neck style, I’d recommend this one. The real standout thing about it is that the neck cord is made from super-soft silk, so it’ll stay comfortable on your skin.
As a guy, I don’t personally have any experience with this one, but I’ve been told that it’s comfortable and a good choice for stashing some cash in a location where you’ll notice if someone puts their hand.