What exactly do we mean by a fake wallet? It’s a decoy – the purpose of which is to fool a mugger or pickpocket into stealing it rather than taking your real wallet.
The theory is this: if you’re ever threatened and told to hand over your wallet, you give up the decoy but your real stash is hidden elsewhere on your person (like in your money belt).
If your fake wallet is pick-pocketed, then the worse that happens is that you learn to be more aware of your surroundings.
A decoy wallet is especially useful when you’re traveling – although some folks employ them all the time – because it forces you to keep only the minimal or a days’ worth of cash in the decoy and keep everything else safely tucked into your money belt.
When you’re putting together a fake wallet, it’s got to look real enough and yet prevent a thief from accessing your funds, selling your identity on the black market, and worse.
Here are the top components that make the best fake wallets:
Remember, a pickpocket is just looking for any wallet and a mugger wants something that looks like a wallet. Give it to them without giving up what you really need – your travel cash, your real identification, etc.
Just don’t look smug or enthusiastic when you give it up! In fact, most recommend you grumble and complain a bit.
We’ve recommended before that you leave expensive or precious things behind when you travel. The designer purse is a good example of this. By carrying a basic purse (it should be a bag that’s work across the body and in front), then the bag is less likely to be snatched from you by someone passing by.
If your fake wallet is also in that basic purse, but your primary travel cash, documents, and passport are in your money belt worn underneath your clothing, then you can hand the purse and fake wallet over without too much remorse. You might lose today’s worth of cash and some other odd items, but it’s likely worth it.
After all, you know the rest is safe. Your favorite lipstick? Put it in your coat or jeans pocket instead.
Damian Tysdal is the founder of CoverTrip, and he believes travel insurance should be easier to understand. He started the first travel insurance blog in 2006.