My first piece of advice: be organised. If you know me you may consider me as an organised person: I love making lists; lists in notebooks; lists on my phone, making plans etc. However if you really know me, you will know these to-do lists are rarely completed and include ‘wake up… have shower… dry hair…’ as if I would forget to wake up or something. So this organised persona is really a facade, and in reality I tend to be somewhat unorganised. And because of this, things tend to sort of…happen to me… And one of these ‘things’ happened on my first day of travelling: after my first EVER 6 hour flight completely alone, I landed at Dubai airport. I’d made it like 10,000 miles (very inaccurate guesstimate) and I felt like I could do anything by myself. So I’d worked out where my connecting flight would be, and sat at the waiting area for my gate with a load of young people, who I thought must be on my flight. It was at this point that I decided to get cash out (what a good idea, get an unknown amount of money in a currency I’d never seen before for a country I’d be in for 2 hours).
I stuck my prepaid cash card in the machine and BEEP BEEP BEEP *incorrect pin*. I tried again and BEEP BEEP BEEP *incorrect pin*…again… I then couldn’t log onto the website from where my card was issued, and no phone calls would go through to the company (yet I was still charged £1.49 per attempted call, thanks Tesco). After some serious stressing, emailing and attempted FaceTime calls to my mum, the issue was resolved, and the pin was reissued; meaning when I got off the plane at Bangkok, after the second 6 hour flight (filled with worry) I was able to get out my Thai Baht. Too much Thai Baht as it turns out, as I still didn’t know anything about foreign currencies.
So my lessons from the day are:
•Check a new card actually works before leaving the country (I actually met a few other people who had troubles with their new cashcards)
•Get a currency converter app on your phone, especially when using a number of different currencies, this will come in incredibly handy.
Thanks for reading y’all