Cash in Your Wallet

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
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mike143
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by mike143 » Sat Dec 28, 2013 7:19 pm

I never carried cash but I started again recently and started buying holiday scratch offs. Good thing they paid off more than they cost. Again I am going to stop carrying cash, too untrackable. Actually stopped my wife from spending cash today, "you get 2% cash back if you use your card". *we never pay cc interest.
Nothing is free, someone pays...You can't spend your way to financial freedom.

likegarden
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by likegarden » Sat Dec 28, 2013 7:54 pm

It is good to carry some cash, I do usually around $200. That is $150 ($50s folded sharp) hidden in the wallet, $50 in the viewable part.
After we recently cancelled our credit card due to having bought at Target, the check reading machine at a national restaurant chain did not take our check, so I was very happy that I had $100 cash in my wallet. In the mean time we got a new credit card.

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in_reality
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by in_reality » Sat Dec 28, 2013 8:03 pm

denovo wrote: I wonder how many people with a stash in the house that is never used for several years end up forgetting about it. :)
Ha ha ha. The truth is we check the batteries in the flashlights and radio and restock the food and water supplies every year. No good having useless supplies when you need them. The cash is in near that bag and trust us we don't forget about it.

Our plan is to get out in a major quake on bicycle if necessary. There are too many people In a stricken area who need aid and if you can get to where transportation is running, you can escape. I'm not going to freeze outside waiting for help that might not come for a long time.

So yeah that's why we keep money at home. We may need it to flee.

Geist
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by Geist » Sat Dec 28, 2013 10:12 pm

I've never carried much cash on me... But I do try to keep *some* just in case there is something necessary for which I can't use a credit card. I generally keep between $20-$40, though sometimes it'll be less that $10, or more than $50. When traveling, I'll carry a little more, but credit cards are quite widely accepted in many countries, so even that is not necessary.

Grt2bOutdoors
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Sat Dec 28, 2013 10:18 pm

$20 in the wallet.
I keep more in other locations.
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kttpn
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by kttpn » Sat Dec 28, 2013 10:33 pm

I keep $300-400. Got caught several years ago when power was out for >1 week. Those with cash bought goods and services; those with cards did not. :oops:

uglystickrules
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by uglystickrules » Sat Dec 28, 2013 10:37 pm

When I get cash from the ATM, I usually get an odd amount ($70, $90) so that I'll have a small bill in with the 20's for convenience. I only go to the ATM once a week at most unless an unexpected social event comes up, which is quite rare. That's usually my allowance for lunches at work, vending machines on my breaks if I need a soft drink, and other little things that I don't want to have drawn from my checking account but might need (haircut, dry cleaners).

I try to spend my cash first on things like gas and groceries before going to my checking account. I never use a credit card on anything except large purchases I plan to pay off the next month just to have the occasional revolving credit. For example, yesterday I started with about $180 - after running errands today, which included gassing up the car, groceries, pet food, and auto maintenance, I'm down to about $6. Didn't touch my debit or credit card, though.

One of my goals for 2014 is to cut little things here and there, so my cash spending habit could change since it's flexible. Getting an iron ( :oops: ) and drinking more water will save quite a bit.

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VictoriaF
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by VictoriaF » Sat Dec 28, 2013 11:36 pm

I usually carry about $40-$60, and the only time I missed having more cash was when I needed money to pay New Jersey Turnpike on my way back from New Jersey. Having extra cash to pay off potential muggers is outdated. Nowadays, the muggers take you straight to an ATM machine to get much more than you can reasonably have on you.

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

denovo
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by denovo » Sat Dec 28, 2013 11:43 pm

VictoriaF wrote:I usually carry about $40-$60, and the only time I missed having more cash was when I needed money to pay New Jersey Turnpike on my way back from New Jersey. Having extra cash to pay off potential muggers is outdated. Nowadays, the muggers take you straight to an ATM machine to get much more than you can reasonably have on you.

Victoria

That seems sophisticated. Maybe some boglehead muggers will ask you to directly contribute to their IRA.
"Don't trust everything you read on the Internet"- Abraham Lincoln

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VictoriaF
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by VictoriaF » Sat Dec 28, 2013 11:45 pm

denovo wrote:
VictoriaF wrote:I usually carry about $40-$60, and the only time I missed having more cash was when I needed money to pay New Jersey Turnpike on my way back from New Jersey. Having extra cash to pay off potential muggers is outdated. Nowadays, the muggers take you straight to an ATM machine to get much more than you can reasonably have on you.

Victoria

That seems sophisticated. Maybe some boglehead muggers will ask you to directly contribute to their IRA.
Only if they belong to the Irish Republican Army.

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

lightheir
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by lightheir » Sat Dec 28, 2013 11:52 pm

The main reason I carry cash is for the occasional split-the-restaurant bill lunch or dinner, where the restaurant is unwilling to process 4 separate credit cards for 4 people.

TT
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by TT » Sun Dec 29, 2013 7:41 am

Usually 200- 500 dollars
Sometimes up to 1,000
You never know when a great deal may arise that requires cash-
The Belgium Browning Sweet 16 with 2 barrels for $115 cash
Then there was the S & W Model 25 brand new in the box for $ 235 cash
Or the Kubota 51" 3 point hitch snow blower in excellent condition for $400 cash
Or the Heavy duty trailer for $150 cash
Cash deals instantly

protagonist
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by protagonist » Sun Dec 29, 2013 8:15 am

I take cash out from ATM's in $500 lots and replenish when I need to....usually close to $20-50, so I guess my answer is $20-550 depending on when you catch me. Even though Fidelity reimburses ATM fees, this avoids the hassle of more frequent ATM trips. $500 lasts me a very long time since I use credit cards whenever possible. Even for things like gum. A pack of gum gets me a frequent flyer mile and keeps me from having to go back to the ATM 1/500th as often.
Last edited by protagonist on Sun Dec 29, 2013 4:46 pm, edited 3 times in total.

protagonist
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by protagonist » Sun Dec 29, 2013 8:17 am

VictoriaF wrote:I usually carry about $40-$60, and the only time I missed having more cash was when I needed money to pay New Jersey Turnpike on my way back from New Jersey. Having extra cash to pay off potential muggers is outdated. Nowadays, the muggers take you straight to an ATM machine to get much more than you can reasonably have on you.

Victoria
Wow. Smart muggers in DC. But what if you pass a cop on the way to the ATM?

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Rob5TCP
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by Rob5TCP » Sun Dec 29, 2013 8:32 am

Like others, I keep $50 to $100 (for emergencies that don't take c.c.). But 99% of the time I put everything on my c.c. I use Quicken (hate it) to track all expenses and income at the end of each month.
The 2% from Capital One doesn't hurt either. I never carry a balance, so the interest rate is irrelevant. Very few places in NYC don't accept c.c. (a few off the beaten path restaurants are cash only, but they
are the exception).

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VictoriaF
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by VictoriaF » Sun Dec 29, 2013 8:41 am

protagonist wrote:
VictoriaF wrote:I usually carry about $40-$60, and the only time I missed having more cash was when I needed money to pay New Jersey Turnpike on my way back from New Jersey. Having extra cash to pay off potential muggers is outdated. Nowadays, the muggers take you straight to an ATM machine to get much more than you can reasonably have on you.

Victoria
Wow. Smart muggers in DC.
Especially when they are sent on request, by friends from afar.

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

aquifer
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by aquifer » Sun Dec 29, 2013 8:47 am

I withdraw $100 at a time, usually when the cash supply falls under $40 or so. I don't generally use much cash personally but I do tend to keep some on me because my job requires that I travel to sparsely populated areas where cards aren't always accepted. Soon after starting this job I stayed over night in a hotel in a tiny town. I went down the next morning, had breakfast, and went to pay for the room and meal. Sorry we don't take credit cards! I had maybe $5 on me and no checks. There was an ATM in town but I've never forgotten that deal so I carry cash now. I also buy customers lunch occasionally in small rural towns where the bar or cafe doesn't take credit cards so I carry more cash than I typically would need for myself.

fjsfjsfjs
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by fjsfjsfjs » Sun Dec 29, 2013 8:50 am

About 50€. If I buy something bigger than that, I normally use cards.

likegarden
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by likegarden » Sun Dec 29, 2013 12:30 pm

Viktoria wrote that muggers nowadays bring you to an ATM to get more cash. I am in trouble then, never remember my PIN number.

FatMoneyClip
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by FatMoneyClip » Sun Dec 29, 2013 12:42 pm

$300-500 for "emergencies" only.
I try to run all purchases through my rebate credit cards.
But there are times when cash is the only thing that talks.

tjwolf
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by tjwolf » Sun Dec 29, 2013 1:13 pm

Usually a couple of twenties, and a few ones in a money clip with credit cards. For many years have also carried $500 in a money belt. Probably a carry over from many years of business travel.
Pay almost all charges with a rebate credit card. Have never had a balance carry over from month to month. Do not want a debit card and its associated risks.
Tom

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tylerdurden
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by tylerdurden » Sun Dec 29, 2013 1:17 pm

I usually carry around $60 in cash. It is very rare that I actually use cash, though.
"The things you own end up owning you." -TD

island
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by island » Sun Dec 29, 2013 1:32 pm

likegarden wrote:Viktoria wrote that muggers nowadays bring you to an ATM to get more cash. I am in trouble then, never remember my PIN number.
Me either and I usually don't carry my ATM card. When Bank of Husband stops at the ATM I usually just pinch an emergency 20 to keep in my car.

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frugaltype
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by frugaltype » Sun Dec 29, 2013 4:09 pm

denovo wrote: I've seen a few people here and in other places mention they keep a relatively large sum of money in their home $500 to a few thousand, in their home for emergency purposes. I can't think of any situation where I would need that kind of money in an immediate emergency situation. What am I missing? Do other people have more interesting lives than me that lead them to emergency situations where they need that kind of money?
Besides the $100-$200 in my pocketbook, I have about $200 in the house. As noted in a couple of posts, if you're in a prolonged widespread power failure, you will find that most stores aren't able to accept credit cards. Food, prescriptions, etc. I'm stocked up 1-2 months in advance on filled prescriptions, but if I weren't, I could easily burn through $500 for a month's worth. I have a stock of canned goods as well, but if I didn't, I'd need cash to buy food. Also to spend on short term means of dealing with the disaster - plumber, electrician, boarding up house.

I don't know of any place in the U.S. that is free of the possibility of natural disasters.

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linenfort
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by linenfort » Sun Dec 29, 2013 4:19 pm

I wrote:I have to carry more than zero as part of the urban survival strategy. That is, it's inconvenient to have less than $20-25 when you're being mugged. You could get hurt.
and
VictoriaF wrote: Having extra cash to pay off potential muggers is outdated. Nowadays, the muggers take you straight to an ATM machine to get much more than you can reasonably have on you.
Victoria, although I have read about a taxi driver and his partner in crime forcing their passengers to go to an ATM, I have also read about thieves bringing a man back to his home because he didn't have enough :moneybag on his person. (I think this was in or near Philadelphia). That's why I don't think it's out of date. If you don't have that minimum amount of cash but you do have an ATM card, then you're possibly asking for trouble, in my opinion.

---
lightheir wrote:The main reason I carry cash is for the occasional split-the-restaurant bill lunch or dinner, where the restaurant is unwilling to process 4 separate credit cards for 4 people.
Yes! I do that, too. One friend always says, "I don't have change. I'll pay you next time." I have learned to have change at the ready. :happy
Is it too early for an all-bond-portfolio thread?

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yatesd
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by yatesd » Sun Dec 29, 2013 5:43 pm

I take $200 out at a time from the ATM and only reload when I run out. My wallet generally has between 0-$200 at any one time.

Here are the downsides to having no cash:

- Can't readily provide tips (ex. shuttle from parking lot to airport). This creates awkward moments for me. Especially when one deserves it.
- Around Christmas I was asked to chip in $20 for a gift. It was easy when I had cash on hand and a pain when I didn't. Had to use a high fee ATM.
- If I was broke down or had an emergency it might be convenient to have some cash
-I prefer to make purchases below $20 with cash... especially at a small business. At the local fruitstand or farmers market it might be the only option.

tao
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by tao » Sun Dec 29, 2013 6:44 pm

Thanks to all for your thoughtful replies. The range came out wider than I expected with anywhere from $2 to $1500 in your wallets it seems and around $80 I'd guess as the median tallying everyone's responses and perhaps $125 as the average given the positively skewed distribution. So averaging the median and average, a $100 or so on me feels about normal and my European friends were simply on the right tail of the distribution. Many thanks.

livesoft
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by livesoft » Sun Dec 29, 2013 6:50 pm

My spouse was mugged at gunpoint when leaving a building that had a bank even though she did not go to the bank. The perps got less than a dollar in change which was all the money she had. They were later arrested because they left a completed food stamp application with their names and address in her car.
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BTDT
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by BTDT » Sun Dec 29, 2013 7:13 pm

denovo wrote:
in_reality wrote:

I wonder how many people with a stash in the house that is never used for several years end up forgetting about it. :)
:oops: in the process of preparing a work area for a cable-guy to add a router inside a kitchen cabinet, we found some Kruggarands in a decorative bowel we placed on an over head shelf ten or so years ago (pre-Boglehead days) :oops:
If past history was all that is needed to play the game of money, the richest people would be librarians.

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yatesd
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by yatesd » Sun Dec 29, 2013 7:34 pm

jvclark02 wrote:
denovo wrote:
in_reality wrote:

I wonder how many people with a stash in the house that is never used for several years end up forgetting about it. :)
:oops: in the process of preparing a work area for a cable-guy to add a router inside a kitchen cabinet, we found some Kruggarands in a decorative bowel we placed on an over head shelf ten or so years ago (pre-Boglehead days) :oops:
Wow, a decorative bowel. :D

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Phineas J. Whoopee
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by Phineas J. Whoopee » Sun Dec 29, 2013 7:46 pm

I think my wallet has too much wear for me to attempt cashing it in.
PJW

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linenfort
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by linenfort » Sun Dec 29, 2013 8:03 pm

livesoft wrote:My spouse was mugged at gunpoint when leaving a building that had a bank even though she did not go to the bank. The perps got less than a dollar in change which was all the money she had. They were later arrested because they left a completed food stamp application with their names and address in her car.
That should be in the paper with the headline, "Oh, S.N.A.P.!"
Is it too early for an all-bond-portfolio thread?

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Crimsontide
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by Crimsontide » Sun Dec 29, 2013 8:10 pm

$23.00. The only time I use cash is for haircuts - once every six weeks whether I need it or not :happy. At the rate I'm shedding now the interval is getting longer and longer...

livesoft
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by livesoft » Sun Dec 29, 2013 8:48 pm

linenfort wrote:
livesoft wrote:My spouse was mugged at gunpoint when leaving a building that had a bank even though she did not go to the bank. The perps got less than a dollar in change which was all the money she had. They were later arrested because they left a completed food stamp application with their names and address in her car.
That should be in the paper with the headline, "Oh, S.N.A.P.!"
It was in the paper … but the reporter got all the facts wrong which made it nice because nothing was personally identifiable. I don't think the food stamp program was called SNAP at the time though. :)
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Para45
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by Para45 » Sun Dec 29, 2013 9:13 pm

[OT comment removed by admin LadyGeek]

placeholder
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by placeholder » Mon Dec 30, 2013 2:26 am

ieee488 wrote:Fortunately, I had cash in my wallet to pay the cab driver.
Most cabs take credit cards.

Para45
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by Para45 » Mon Dec 30, 2013 4:42 pm

sorry Miss LadyGeek... and posters...

BoxOfUpticks
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by BoxOfUpticks » Mon Dec 30, 2013 8:44 pm

TT wrote:You never know when a great deal may arise that requires cash
Yes, cash truly IS king! Those sound like great discounts, congrats, TT!

A good cash discount is a reason i keep cash on hand -- i can confidently negotiate for a better discount, without worrying about ach transfer times. Oddly, my old bank never had more than a dozen hundreds on hand, but they were always happy to offer hundreds of twenties for me to 'discreetly' carry out of the branch.

To answer the OP's question: several hundred in wallet.

a few hundred in emergency-only (or rocking' discount) cash -- it comes in handy when a vendor is experiencing technical difficulties or can't/won't take my emergency check (which thoughtfully keeps the emergency hundreds company and gives them an air of superiority).

placeholder wrote:
ieee488 wrote: Fortunately, I had cash in my wallet to pay the cab driver.
Most cabs take credit cards.
I started keeping extra cash on hand when i barely had enough for a cab ride home after getting rear-ended. They did not take credit cards, but that was '94.
There are 10 kinds of people in the world: those that understand binary, and those that don't.

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wander
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by wander » Mon Dec 30, 2013 9:03 pm

I don't have more than $10 in my wallet.

MathWizard
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by MathWizard » Tue Dec 31, 2013 2:47 pm

$300-400 My zero-th level Emergency Fund.

Got caught once with a car problem in a small town. A credit card would handle car repairs, but
the only cafe in town took only cash. I barely had enough for a cheap meal for the kids and some coffee
for the my wife and I for the half-day we had to stay in the town.

We also have had storms where cash could be used but not credit cards.

snapwa
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by snapwa » Tue Dec 31, 2013 2:56 pm

Very rarely do I carry around cash - usually only if I'm going out for an event that calls for it e.g. large group dinner/cover charge/cash only bar. There's only been a handful of times where I've truly been inconvenienced for not having cash on my person, and I find that I have a much easier time spending cash (at this point I use it so rarely it feels like monopoly money) so it's better for my saving account if I stick to the credit cards.

scotthal
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by scotthal » Wed Jan 01, 2014 2:21 pm

I usually carry $100-$200 in my wallet (mostly trickles out on diesel fuel purchases), $500 in my money belt for emergencies & garage sales, and keep $1000-$2000 in the home safe for random Craigslist purchases.
Growtch, grinch; paranoid contrarian

john94549
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by john94549 » Wed Jan 01, 2014 3:13 pm

I seldom have more than $50, as the wife takes any excess.

jnet2000
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Re: Cash in Your Wallet

Post by jnet2000 » Wed Jan 01, 2014 3:26 pm

I almost never have cash. I use my debit card, as credit, for everything personal and my AMEX for all business purchases. Maybe, I have 5 bucks once in a while and that is only because I find it around the house :D .
"You really don't need leverage in this world much. If you're smart, you're going to make a lot of money without borrowing" Warren Buffet

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