Catriona’s Travel Tips – Your Travel Questions Answered #17!

by Thursday, August 9, 2018

Question from @Wishy273 (via Instagram):

Hi Catriona,

My mum is leaving next week for 2 months in UK, Europe and then doing a Scenic Russian river cruise at the end.

Do you have any tips for what travel card to take? None seem to support Russian rouble that we looked at.

At this stage she has an ANZ card with pounds and euros on it and was advised to withdraw euros before she leaves EU to fly to St Petersburg and then change cash as required.

Doesn’t sound very safe but using ATMs didn’t sound great either and ANZ card charges large fees for use in Russia.


Moscow. Image: Serge Kutuzov, Unsplash.

Catriona’s Answer:

Hello @Wishy273,
Wow, your Mum has chosen a truly remarkable journey. I took my Mum to Russia and we were literally in tears of joy. It’s everything the news says it isn’t. Fun!
In regards to money, I want you to take a breath. It sounds like you’re going to stress your Mum out.
There is no need to take various currencies or cards. Take one trusted credit card. I like Amex (this is not sponsored, btw), as I have to pay it off every month. But I tend to avoid credit cards in general as I’m a massive shopper.
Inform your bank where and when you’re going, just in case. And you may like to take a little bit of local currency.
I used ATMs everywhere. Just look for the Cirrus logo (I think it’s two blue circles with white writing) and away you go.
Of course, make sure you have enough money in your account. Having your banking app on your phone, which you check only in safe areas, is really helpful.
There’s no need to stress too much. You’ve got more chance of being ripped off at home.
You may like to help your Mum get WhatsApp on her phone so you can chat and, even better, use the video or FaceTime when you have Wi-Fi.
Tell her to have a ball, wear red, eat caviar and spend the kids’ inheritance! ?