Hi, my 20 year old is about to head off for 3 months to India, Cambodia, Vietnam and Thailand. She has looked into all options for taking money and thinks she will go with a pre-paid card. Travelling with boyfriend so he will have other means of travel. Has anyone got any experience of using pre-paid cards in Asia, she won't be travelling to places that are too remote.
Anything but too much cash, is obviously a good idea. Sorry cant advise anything specific, but I hope it runs smoothly and your DD is safe and enjoys the trip. My DD is 20 yrs too and off to Dominican Republic next monday with her bfriend.... but only for two weeks.
Years ago, I used to buy travelers cheques. I think they still exist. Might be worth to have a look at that. You need your passport to change them in a bank, and in case of rob, you are ensured (if you still have the yellow slip).
You need to have several means, so that if one is stolen or doesn't work, she has others. Take a mix of cash, travellers cheques, a cash card (which you can top up from UK so she never stands to lose too much at once) and one or two low limit credit cards. For the latter two, make sure she authorises you with the provider so if necessary you can sort things out for her from here.
For some questions you didn't ask - make sure she's had jabs and checked need for malaria prophylaxis. And has good health/other insurance. Photocopy these twice - you keep one, she keep a copy separate from the original (in a separate bag) so she still has details in case of loss of one. Ditto the business end of her passport - if she can supply a photocopy, or you fax one to the Embassy, it makes getting a replacement much easier.
Finally, you might like to look into a course like the ones provided by Onjectives Gap Year Safety to make sure she's as prepared as can be.
Be aware of card scams, I can only speak about Thailand, but we had our Lloyds card cloned three times there. Dollars are the preferred currency in both Vietnam and Cambodia. Both are ridiculously cheap even compared to Thailand. I haven't been to India for twenty years, so can't say anything about that country but could ask some of the mums at DDs school if you want. Let me know.
Just a tip, I went to Africa this year and my bank doesn't even issue travellers cheques any more! Did get some from another bank and then had a problem cashing them in the country itself, only one bank in the capital city would cash them!
My sister ended up sending me money by Western Union, brilliant, I got it as soon as I got her text message with the nr. and question. The good thing about W.U. is you don't need to go to a bank, lots of shops are agents too.