• >
  • Guides>
  • 3 holiday essentials for your travel wallet

3 holiday essentials for your travel wallet

Now that your holiday is booked, it is time to sort out your finances to make sure your trip abroad is as enjoyable as possible. Here is what to prepare before you jet off.

Share this guide


Even if you have booked an all-inclusive holiday, it is important to have cash available in case:

  • You want to eat out at a restaurant

  • You want to go on an excursion

  • You want to buy souvenirs

  • You want to tip anyone

  • You need it in an emergency

If your meals are not included as part of your holiday package, you will also need money for food and drinks. Work out how much you should take here.

For spending money abroad, your options include:

  • Taking foreign currency as cash

  • Using your debit card

  • Using your credit card

  • Using a prepaid card

  • Using a travellers cheque

Try to take at least two of these, so you have a backup in case of an emergency.

However, these options do not all cost the same, so make sure you shop around to find the best deal for your trip.

Find out the best way to spend abroad here

Travel insurance

If you are going on holiday within Europe, get a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). The EHIC gives you access to free local healthcare, so keep it on you at all times.

However, you should still get a travel insurance policy because there are restrictions on how you can use your EHIC. Learn more about why you should get one and how to use it here.

A travel insurance policy covers a much wider range of claims and medical expenses, wherever in the world you go on holiday.

There are different types of travel insurance you can get, which offer specialist cover for:

  • Winter sports

  • Cruise holidays

  • Senior citizens

Make sure you take out the right level of cover, otherwise you could end up paying thousands if something goes wrong.

Find out how travel insurance works here

Car insurance

If you rent a car on your holiday, or plan to drive your own car abroad, you need to get the right type of car insurance cover.

  • If you are renting a car abroad: Most holiday companies offer you the option of arranging a rental car and insurance together when you book a holiday. If you are driving in Europe, you could shop around and try to get a cheaper insurance deal.

  • If you are taking your car abroad: Call your car insurer and ask them if they will cover you. They have to give you third party protection when you drive abroad, but you might be able to pay a fee to get comprehensive cover.

Here is what you need to know about insuring your car abroad

What else?

There may be travel restrictions and warnings depending on the country you are visiting.

GOV.UK offer up to date information about every country in the world, which tells you:

  • A summary of the country

  • Any safety or security issues

  • Any signs of terrorism

  • Local law and customs

  • If there are any entry requirements, e.g. a visa

  • What currency is accepted

  • Contact details for the British embassy

Visit GOV.UK and choose your holiday destination to find out more

About Dom James

View Dom James's full biography here or visit the money.co.uk press centre for our latest news.