It’s always important to keep your money and valuables safe. But when traveling, you have a heightened sense of responsibility. There aren’t many worse scenarios than being stranded in a foreign country with no passport, cash or credit cards.
Theft can happen at any time while traveling, so it’s imperative you do what you can to protect yourself and belongings.
Enter money belts!
Money belts take the stress out of traveling with valuables as you can always be assured of their place close to your body. When used discreetly, only you will know the location of your cash and cards, as well as passport and cellphone.
An ideal piece of gear for any jetsetter, here are the best travel money belts of 2021.
- 1 Our Picks for Best Travel Money Belts
- 2 Travel Money Belts: Comparison Table
- 3 What is a Money Belt?
- 4 Why Travel with a Money Belt
- 5 What to Look for in a Travel Money Belt
- 6 How to Choose the Best Travel Money Belt for you
- 7 Best Travel Money Belts 2021
- 7.1 Pouch-Style Money Belts for Travel
- 7.2 Classic-Looking Travel Money Belts
- 7.3 Money Belts for the Active Traveler
- 8 Travel Money Belt Alternatives
- 9 More Tips to Keep Your Money Safe While Traveling
Our Picks for Best Travel Money Belts
- Best Budget Money Belt: dimok Running Belt Waist Pack
- Best Luxury Money Belt: Yoder Leather Company Hidden Pocket Leather Belt
- Best Active Money Belt: FlipBelt
- Best Overall: Venture 4th Travel Money Belt
Travel Money Belts: Comparison Table
Venture 4th Travel Money Belt $ 210D Ripstop Nylon Yes Day Tip Money Belt $ 210D Ripstop Nylon Yes MUCO Travel Money Belt $ Ripstop Nylon Yes JASGOOD Travel Security Money Belt $ Nylon No Yoder Leather Company Hidden Pocket Leather Belt $$$ Leather No FlipBelt $$ Micropoly Fabric No Stashbandz $$ Spandex No dimok Running Belt Waist Pack $ Neoprene No Lewis N. Clark Money Belt Travel Pouch $ TravelDry Nylon Yes Pacsafe Coversafe S25 Hidden Undercover Travel Pouch for Women $ Lingerie Fabric No Zero Grid Neck Wallet $ 210D Ripstop Nylon Yes with Sleeves WAYPOINT GOODS Travel Scarf $$ Polyester No
What is a Money Belt?
Money belts have undergone a serious evolution in recent years; they no longer resemble that beige colored fanny pack that your grandmother toted along to every family trip!
Now, money belts for travel come in all shapes and styles while serving one purpose: to discreetly carry your valuables close to your body.
Money belts can range from a standard-looking leather belt, to a pouch you wear under your shirt, to a band that sits around your waist as you go for a run. These little belts have secret pockets that you’re able to stash your cash and cards in, with some being large enough to fit your passport, phone, and other essential items.
They’re ideal for travel as they keep your belongings close to your body and prevent theft on the go. Seriously, does it get more practical than this?
Why Travel with a Money Belt
Traveling with a money belt is highly recommended because it gives you the ultimate assurance that your valuables are safe and sound.
When visiting touristy places that are known for pickpockets, you can enjoy the sights with peace, knowing that your passport is pressed up against you and there’s no bulky wallet sticking out from your back pocket.
It also makes travel days that much more convenient. When you keep all of your important documents in your travel money belt, you don’t have to spend time digging around trying to find your passport when you’re next in line.
Plus, when you put your luggage away after boarding the train, bus or plane, you can still keep your valuables with you at all times instead of on a luggage rack or down below in the luggage hold.
Finally, having a money belt is a good idea for travelers who might not have access to a safe or locker wherever they’re staying. The last thing you want to do is leave your passport and extra cash lying around unsecured at a hostel. Even hotel safes can be dodgy sometimes.
With a money belt, you can always bring your valuables with you discreetly instead of leaving them behind.
What to Look for in a Travel Money Belt
Here are some main components to look for when examining different money belts for travel.
Like with any product, you want to choose a money belt that’s made of high quality material.
Something that’s durable will suit you best, as you won’t have to worry about the belt falling apart as you stroll around carrying all of your valuables in it.
It’s also best for a money belt to be crafted from water-resistant (if not completely waterproof), breathable material. This ensures that your most precious documents stay dry from sweat, rain or all of the above while keeping you comfortable when wearing it.
Most money belts are typically made of nylon which is highly durable, lightweight ,and water-resistant. Sometimes, you’ll even come across belts made of ripstop nylon which will stop small tears from becoming gaping holes in case the belt rips.
Probably the most important part of a travel money belt are sealable pockets.
When looking at different options, be sure that whatever money belt you choose has zippered compartments to keep your valuables safe, as well as stash pockets for the rest.
It’s best to have multiple spacious compartments to keep everything separated and available at a moment’s notice!
Flexible, Adjustable Straps
The main purpose of a money belt is it holds your valuables close to your body. In doing so, it needs to be secured with sturdy straps that will keep the belt comfortably on your body until you remove it.
You’ll want a money belt with flexible and adjustable straps. This way, you won’t feel suffocated but you won’t feel like the belt is slipping off either. It’s also best that there are no straps hanging off the belt and sticking out from under your clothing because this will give away the location of your hidden valuables.
Finally, you should look for a travel money belt that offers decent protection against theft, as this is the whole point of the item.
Protection can come in different forms, from zippers on the pockets to the tightness of the straps. But it can also include RFID-blocking material that will keep your identity safe from electronic theft, as well as slash-proof straps to keep your belt safe even if it comes in contact with something sharp.
At the end of the day, the amount of protection in your belt boils down to personal preference and the type of belt you’re looking at. I’d advise getting one that will, at the very least, keep your belongings secured and attached to you.
How to Choose the Best Travel Money Belt for you
With all that’s been mentioned in mind, here are two factors to help choose the travel money belt that’s right for you.
The size and style of your money belt is probably the main consideration when it comes to choosing the best one for you.
If you’re just looking for a place to stash your cash, it’s likely you’ll be fine with a slim, classic-looking money belt with a hidden compartment.
On the other hand, you may prefer to keep all of your valuables close to your body. In this case, you should choose a belt with a pouch that’s big enough to fit your passport and phone, along with cash and cards.
Besides style of your money belt, you should think about when you’ll be using it most.
Are you looking for something that you can wear every day? Just a standard money belt should do you fine. Looking for something to take adventuring? Maybe opt for a waterproof money belt that’s designed for active wear.
Deciding on when you’ll be wearing your money belt most will help you with your final choice.
Best Travel Money Belts 2021
Now that you know all there is to look for and consider when it comes to money belts, here are the best options available to you.
Pouch-Style Money Belts for Travel
If you’re in the market for a money belt designed in the typical pouch style, there are some great choices.
The three belts we’ve picked have a few spacious compartments to fit anything from your passport to cellphone to spare cash, and are designed to be worn discreetly under your clothes.
If you’re looking for a money belt to see you on all of your adventures, this is the one for you.
Thoughtfully constructed of extremely durable materials, the 210 denier ripstop nylon fabric will keep your belongings safe and sound while you traverse through cities or along trails off the beaten path.
Super lightweight, this Venture money belt furthers its durability with double-stitched reinforced seams so you’ll never have to worry about the thing falling apart while you’re on the go. Plus, with two spacious zippered pockets, you can leave your purse and bulky pockets at home and fit everything you need right in here.
The mesh panel on the back of the belt is designed to keep you feeling cool while wearing it. If that’s not enough, the entire pouch is lined with RFID-blocking material and it comes in seven different colors!
Pretty unbeatable first option, wouldn’t you say?
Almost identical in design to the previous belt, the Day Tip money belt is also made of 210 denier ripstop nylon that’s water-resistant, lightweight and breathable.
The entire pouch is made from RFID-blocking material to give you peace of mind when storing valuable information inside, and it’s large enough to keep everything in one place.
With two zippered pouches, there are internal pockets as well to keep you organized and everything separated into different compartments. There’s even a key hook that will keep you from digging around looking for them when the time comes.
While it only comes in one size, the straps on this belt are elastic and highly stretchy and adjustable, allowing you to get the perfect fit every time.
One of the best parts of this belt is the hidden pocket on the back of the pouch under the mesh panel that allows you to sneakily hide the most valuable of items. Smart design, huh?
This belt comes in black or tan, allowing you to easily keep it hidden under whatever you’re wearing.
A last option in this category is a money belt by MUCO with a genius design that you can take with you anywhere.
Basic specs of this money belt is that it’s equipped with RFID-blocking material, fits 25″-50″ waist size, has two large zippered pockets as well as a hidden pocket on the back, and is made of water-resistant 420 denier ripstop nylon.
What makes this money belt unique is that instead of just a single strap, there are two to keep the belt extra secure and comfortable around your waist. If you’re worried about your belt sliding around or slipping off, give this one a go because it will stay in place all day long.
You can wear this belt right against your skin without sacrificing comfort because the mesh on the back will wick sweat while providing a cushy barrier from whatever is stored inside.
The best part about this bad boy? There’s a little headphone wire outlet so you can even listen to music on the go.
Classic-Looking Travel Money Belts
Pouch-style money belts not your thing? Looking for something with a bit of a classier feel?
These money belts look just like a regular belt but have a hidden compartment for you to stash your cash. While they don’t hold nearly as much as a pouch-style belt, these money belts are still there to give you some peace of mind while traveling with your money.
If rocking a pouch money belt isn’t your style, this JASGOOD belt will give your money the same protection without having to wear it under your clothes.
Looking like a normal belt, this nylon number is sturdy and good-looking, with a hidden compartment for storing cash and other small items.
While it by no means has the same amount of storage space as the previous money belts, the lengthy zippered compartment on the inside of the belt is able to hold a decent amount of folded cash, along with keys and items like thumb drives.
The belt is secured with a YKK buckle that’s durable and discreet, but easily changed if you have a belt buckle more suited to your personal style.
Use it daily or for travel, this is a great addition to any outfit.
Seeking something a little more classy? Opt for this genuine leather belt with some sneaky hidden features to complete a stylish look.
This belt is thicker than normal leather belts and made with high quality craftsmanship so it won’t disappoint those who are seeking something durable and long-lasting. Besides having all the normal features of a standard belt, this one also comes with a long zippered pocket for storing bills in.
When folded in thirds, this belt will fit up to 24 bills, making it convenient for carrying money. If you’re traveling with copies of important documents (say a passport and trip itinerary), those will fit in here as well!
While definitely the priciest option on this list, you’re paying for quality here. Don’t forget to consult the sizing chart so you get the perfect fit!
Money Belts for the Active Traveler
As is evident by now, not all money belts are made alike.
If you’re an active traveler who’s constantly on the go, you may prefer something a little more flexible to fit your lifestyle. There are plenty of money belts created with this in mind, whether you’re a runner, biker, hiker or simply jogging to catch a plane!
Here are our three favorite ones.
King of active money belts, FlipBelts fit an incredible amount in a small package.
With pockets throughout the entire lining of this wraparound belt, this snug companion will fit your cash, cards, keys, and the largest of cellphones without weighing you down. The best part is that there are four different access points to the interior pockets so you can always reach your belongings as needed.
Unlike the other belts, this one has no buckles. Instead, it’s made of stretchy material with hidden seams that sits on your hips as you go about your activities. Users have described the fit similar to yoga pants, giving you a comfortable, chafe-free feeling when worn against your skin or on top of your clothes.
The FlipBelt comes in 9 different colors and is available in sizes ranging from XS to XXL. With over 4,400 positive reviews, this is definitely a money belt worth spending on, especially if you’re an active traveler.
If you like the tight fit and wraparound design of the belt above, here’s another active option for your consideration.
Almost twice the width of a FlipBelt, the Stashbandz belt is perfect for active and travelwear alike. It comfortably sits on your hips, with four wide pockets for easy access to whatever you need at a moment’s notice. There are two pockets on the front: one with a zipper and one with a flip-top, and then two on the back that are big enough for a smartphone no matter the size, passport, keys, and more.
Bonus: you can fit an entire 6oz flask in this bad boy for a little bit of fun on the go!
The fabric Stashbandz is made of is soft, but durable and wicks sweat and other moisture. It won’t bounce while you move, making it perfect for dashing through cities or along the trail.
Finally, if you’d rather have something closer to the typical pouch-style money belts but want to use it for active wear, dimok has a belt for you.
Designed with a large zippered pouch, adjustable elastic straps, and crafted from water-resistant neoprene, this running belt waist pack will fit everything you need for a full day of activity.
The main compartment is large enough to fit a smartphone and other important items, while the two side pouches are designed for cards and keys. Don’t sacrifice your headphones when going out with this belt, because there’s a convenient headphone jack that will hold your earbuds in place while you zoom about.
This travel money belt is designed to keep your things in one place while wearing it instead of bouncing around on your waist. It’s slim enough to stay out of eyesight when under clothes, but comes in five fun colors on the occasion you’d like to stand out.
No matter where this money belt accompanies you, you’ll definitely be glad to have it.
Travel Money Belt Alternatives
Okay, I get it. You’ve reviewed all your options and still aren’t set on the idea that travel money belts are for you.
If that’s the case, here are several money belt alternatives if you’d rather have your valuables some place other than your waist. Check out these four different items designed to keep your belongings safe and out of sight!
If you don’t want to carry anything extra like a bag but also don’t want your pockets to be bulging with your wallet and other valuables, consider opting for a travel pouch.
This nifty number from Lewis N. Clark conveniently stores your most precious belongings, attaches to your belt loop, and can be tucked inside of your pants to be kept out of sight.
Crafted from durable RFID-blocking, moisture-wicking material, this is the perfect way to store your passport and credit cards so they’re protected from electronic theft. Inside the main pouch, you have three separate compartments for when you need some extra organization. The belt loop attachments come in two different colors to match whatever you’re wearing.
Able to fit a good amount in its 5″x7″ body, this travel pouch is a great lightweight alternative to a money belt.
So far, pretty much all of the options for keeping your money safe has required the user to be wearing pants. I mean, wearing a dress with a money belt is possible, but you’ll probably end up showing your underwear every time you want to access what’s inside.
This little pouch was designed specifically for women to attach to their bra so that they can discreetly carry valuables and access them when needed.
Fitting six cards, cash and keys, you have the option to wear this pouch on the front or side of your bra, allowing you to access it whenever, wherever. The elastic strap is adjustable and can fit onto any kind of undergarment you’re wearing, so you don’t need to worry about sizes when purchasing.
Unfortunately, this doesn’t fit a passport or cellphone but it’s certainly a convenient alternative for women who don’t want to carry an entire purse.
I bet you wondered when the neck wallets were coming into play, and here they are.
Basically a money belt or travel wallet around your neck, these are a traveler’s best friend. They conveniently hold everything you need for any kind of trip or adventure, fitting anything from a passport and boarding pass to a pair of headphones and a smartphone.
The biggest perk of this Zero Grid model is it doesn’t have the “geeky” look that many other neck wallets have. No hate to the standard ones, but let’s face it, neck wallets just aren’t fashionable. But here we have a streamlined and minimalist design that will keep it discreet under your clothes and looking good when you need to take it out.
Coming in five different colors and equipped with seven RFID-blocking sleeves for your credit cards and passports, you’ll definitely love having three zippered pockets around your neck while on the go.
Last but not least, we have a final neck option that’s a favorite of ours at Adventure in You and travelers in general. We present to you: the travel scarf.
Ideal when it’s chilly out or simply when you want the convenience of having your valuables close at hand, this is probably the most stylish option of the lot.
In typical infinity scarf fashion, this travel scarf wraps around your neck twice to create a stylish look. The best part though is there’s a zippered pocket for concealing a phone, passport, money and credit cards. It’s the best for travel because you have everything you need right in front of you and can access the pocket sneakily.
Traveling with a scarf is a good idea anyways for all of the cold airports and buses you’ll encounter along the way, so having one with a hidden pocket kills two birds with one stone! Plus, this scarf is wider than most so you can use it as a blanket when extra chilly or to cover your shoulders when modesty is needed. Talk about versatility.
Coming in 36 (yes 36!) different colors, you’ll be able to pick one best suited to your personal style.
More Tips to Keep Your Money Safe While Traveling
While unfortunate thefts happen from time to time, you actually have more power than you know when it comes to protecting yourself against it. Besides using a money belt, here are a few other tips to keep your valuables safe while traveling.
You should always make sure that your bag is zipped and attached to you somehow. When sitting down at a restaurant or a show, keep your bag looped through your arm or leg to prevent someone from running off with it. As ridiculous as it may look, it’s also a good idea to carry your backpack on the front of your body when in crowded places to ensure no one sneaks into it while behind you.
Besides being aware of your bag, be cautious of how much cash you are carrying at one time. While you don’t want to leave it laying around a hotel room or in your bags back at the hostel, avoid pulling out large amounts of cash, especially in public places. Even if it’s hidden discreetly after the action, you’ll still be a target since you’re carrying so much. Take out small bills at a time instead of exposing all your cash at once.
Finally, if you’re leaving extra cash, cards or your passport back at your accommodation, always be sure that they’re locked up, whether it’s in a locker or safe. It’s much better to be safe than sorry, so keep those locks on when you’re gone and have your valuables safe from prying hands.
If you’re looking for some added protection for your money on your travels, a money belt or one of the alternatives is surely a good bet. Not only are they convenient, but you’ll be able to travel stress free knowing that your money is safe on any journey.
Stay safe on your travels!
Looking for more gear recommendations? Check out our guides
- Best Travel Backpacks 2021 [Recommended by Real Travelers!]
- Best Travel Wallets to Stay Organized on the Go [2021 Guide]
- Ultimate List: Best Travel Purse to Buy in 2021
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