Sunday, May 24, 2009

Money madness

I'm the kind of person who can spend far too long planning something
and still fail to do something really obvious.

Before you leave the country, be sure you KNOW THE PIN FOR THE ATM

A week before I left I spent hours- literally 3 or 4 hours- moving our
money around in our 3 checking accounts and 6 savings accounts,
setting up bill payments and automatic transfers to optimally arrange
our finances so that they require as little maintenance and thought as
possible while I'm in Ukenzagapia. I set it up so that I'd use only
our ING checking account for withdrawals here in Ukenzagapia and our
rent and bills would get paid out of the other accounts. I also
brought $1000 cash with me (easier to change than travelers checks and
gets a better rate).

Well, the last time I used the ING debit card was probably a year ago,
and I *thought* I knew the PIN, but all of my guesses so far have been
rejected. This was especially stupid of me since I'd tried it last
month and couldn't guess it then either. So, I've requested a new PIN,
but it's being sent snail mail to Big City. I've got to wait for it to
arrive and for Jon to tell me what it is.

In the meantime, I do have $700 cash left, but I'd like to use as
little of that as possible and keep it for times when I need cash but
can't access an ATM (like this one, I guess). I can also get some
money out of my other checking account but there isn't much in there
(it's only supposed to pay the utility bills).

What's the worst thing you've forgotten for a trip?


Unbalanced Reaction said...

Yikes, that's pretty bad! When I was about seven, my dad forgot to put my bag for a week-long trip into the car (it was waiting for me, patiently, on the front porch upon our return). That pretty much scarred me for the rest of my travel life, so I'm very obsessive about travel lists. I also have to watch my luggage getting loaded onto the car/taxi/bus. Neurotic? Absolutely! ..but it also means the worst thing I've forgotten is deodorant.

Alexandra said...

The worst thing I forgot was to arrange for an air lift to get me out of the Andes in Peru when I was totally miserable.

Be careful of trying your pin too many times. After a certain point, the machine will think you card has been stolen and it will eat your card. Then your new pin number won't help you.