How much cash to carry?

Discussion in 'Money, Investing & Precious Metals' started by ajsmith, Dec 5, 2010.

  1. ajsmith

    ajsmith Well-Known Member

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    I don't know if this is the right place to post this, (here, planning & training or money & investing), but here goes. I've seen this subject mentioned in other posts but have yet to find where it has been really discussed. I would like to get some opinions on how much cash to carry with me in my pack or bag? I know there are lots of variables that go into each decision, so I would like to know what others may be carrying and how you came up with the dollar amounts? Here's some numbers I just pulled out of the air...

    25, one dollar bills
    10, five dollar bills
    10, ten dollar bills
    5, twenty dollar bills
    And of course some coins

    A total of 275 dollars (plus the coins), is this a good amount and do I have it broken up into the denominations correctly? Any feed back would be greatly appreciated, thanks.
     
  2. SurviveNthrive

    SurviveNthrive a dude

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    for a change fund, it's always better to have fives than any tens.
     

  3. Aemilia

    Aemilia Zookeeper

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    What are you planning to buy? And what circumstance? I mean, carrying money for day to day life is different than having the resources for gettin outa dodge. I did a few change orders at a grocery store, and they were like SNT - get rid of the tens, use fives. Personally, I never carry extra cash (back when I had money, LOL). I'll take only what I need, safer and the money doesn't get spent if its not available, NWIM?
     
  4. BoyScoutSurvivor

    BoyScoutSurvivor Active Member

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    I have 100 dollars in my BOB
    2 twentys
    4 tens
    2 fives
    10 ones

    I want to add more but cash is tight.
     
  5. ajsmith

    ajsmith Well-Known Member

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    Not to sound ignorant but......Why no tens? One ten spends as well as two fives, or am I missing something?
     
  6. SurviveNthrive

    SurviveNthrive a dude

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    It's a matter of making change and getting closer to different amounts...if you've $50 in $5's you've got 10 fives as opposed to 5-$10's which isn't as useful for breaking up amounts. Lots of $5's and $1's are easier to make change for, or pay for when there's no expectation of change.

    It's closer to different amounts and two fives can do anything one ten can, but one ten can't do much other than save two fives. It's also less bulky and awkward than simply having ones.

    It's why almost every change fund I dealt with had $1's, $5's, and $20's (for $50's and $100's).

    Many vending machines now also take $5's, not a whole lot take $10's.

    This matters more in preps...you might really, really need something and there ain't going to be any change.
     
  7. The_Blob

    The_Blob performing monkey

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    if hyperinflation and a wrecked economy are statistically the most probable :shtf: scenario then :dunno: when it comes to how much money to have & in what denominations :gaah: you might need much more, or it might not be worth the paper its printed on :(

    idk what a good portable alternative would be in a 'new economy' like that... (inter)nationally recognized letters of credit? :dunno:
     
  8. ajsmith

    ajsmith Well-Known Member

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    This would not be for a planned purchase, and would not be part of my day to day cash. It would be money kept in a "BOB" or what I like to call my "What If Bag", (I'm still putting that together). Just a little something to carry for the what if emergency. I was just wondering what others thought would be a good dollar amount and why?
     
  9. SurviveNthrive

    SurviveNthrive a dude

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    During some severe storms and black outs in my area, one of the big sporting goods stores remained open without any power. They actually had to run customers, for safety and to prevent theft, with an escort with a light. Well, I was doing research for one of my books and I'd gone out (when I'd rather be home) to see how things worked and I stumbled upon this.

    Cash only, and they didn't have a lot of change. They actually gave me pen and ink receipts!
     
  10. The_Blob

    The_Blob performing monkey

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    was this recently? (this year or last?) most businesses would just close & send everyone home, good for them staying open :2thumb:
     
  11. ajsmith

    ajsmith Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the input. What your saying makes a lot of sense, and to load up on more fives sounds like it would be better.
     
  12. SurviveNthrive

    SurviveNthrive a dude

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    This was the company 'G.I. Joes', which became 'Joe's' outdoor and sports equipment...they went under a few years ago.
     
  13. sinbad

    sinbad Well-Known Member

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    I also keep some cash for "what if" scenarios. It is not limited to GHB or BOB, but there is a small emergency wallet in each of our cars containing about ( twenty 1s, few 5s , few 10s, and two 50s). BTW, I am not in the U.S. and that also matters as it depends on your local cost of living and how much usually wish to have when you are stuck somewhere. The total amount should be (a) not large enough to cause you depression if stolen, and (b) close to what you have wished to have in ealrier emergencies or bad days.

    Generally, I keep in every car about 3 times what emergency cash that I have needed , and actually drawn from that emergency wallet , earlier in the previous year.

    The GHB is usually in a more secure position, mostly nearby. So I keep in it about double of what I keep each the car.

    BTW, yesterday was another small victory for prep minded me. The DW was shopping and she needed a bit extra, so she opened the emergency wallet and took some. She told me and I was inflated like a ballon LOL . AGIAN, she saw how right I am when I prepare for contingencies big and small. I adviced her to compensate that amount for future needs. ahem. I guess she would be onboard very soon.
     
  14. NaeKid

    NaeKid YourAdministrator, eh?

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    The "cash" that I carry on my person works out to be 2 full tanks of fuel for any one of my gas-guzzling vehicles.

    Last week the bank snagged my mortgage payment (and misc. other things) out of my account and that same day I went to the gas-station for a fill up. I went to pay for the gas from my bank-card (as per normal) and was declined. I didn't have my budget on track and my primary bank-account had a little less than what I need for gas. No problem, I carry a second bank-card and cash and was on my way quickly with no fuss.

    If I didn't do what I normally do, I could have been stuck there at the gas-station till a friend could come by and pay for my gas for me ... and I would have been kickin' my own butt for being unprepared.
     
  15. Clarice

    Clarice Well-Known Member

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    I would keep tens, fives and ones along with rolled pre 1962 silver coins, not too many coins because of the weight. I feel the day of reckoning is getting closer. I am now carring my GHB everyday, walking shoes, socks, protine bars, water and cash. I only live seven miles from work, but you never know when you'll have to walk it.
     
  16. JayJay

    JayJay Well-Known Member

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    One thing I never do is let my tank get past 1/2 full...and sacrifice other things to keep it most all the time on full when I go home..yes, I have 4 tanks of gas in the shed..but still I like my tank kept full.
     
  17. NaeKid

    NaeKid YourAdministrator, eh?

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    Actually, I was filling it up at the half-way mark. My Jeep takes about $40 to fill from half-tank and my truck takes about $80 to fill from half-mark. I was driving by the gas-station anyway so I stopped in and topped it up without checking my bank-account first (this was at about 6:00am).

    What I was trying to get across in my post is that even though I prepare for emergencies and such all the time, sometimes, something might just get away from us.

    Being prepared with an alternative means of paying for my fuel allowed me to continue on with my day stress-free.
     
  18. Woody

    Woody Woodchuck

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    I had built up (and spent recently) 3 months worth of bills in cash. Why 3 months? No real reason other than one month did not seem near enough, 2 months was close and 3 months felt right to me. If the US goes into the crapper no bills are going to be worth anything for more than a few months. In the vehicle I keep 4 - $5 bills for emergency gas. At work I keep… let me check… 8 ones, 2 fives and a twenty. I commute in a 2008 Yaris LB 5-speed so that $20 will get me quite a ways. Heck, a gallon of gas will make it around 45 miles in the winter, 50 miles in the summer. Much farther if I really had to.

    I also take out my weekly ‘allowance’ in cash each Friday. Anything left at the next Friday goes into the house cash fund for emergencies. It’s been a long time since I had less than $20 come the next Friday. All it takes is just not stopping to buy something one time. It is hard to overspend when to buy something you have to actually have the cash on you. I tried using plastic (debit card) but it was way too easy to just buy something w/out REALLY thinking if I needed it or not. I have never owned a credit card other than the one the company supplied me with for travel.
     
  19. Sister

    Sister New Member

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    I have double that tucked away. It never hurts to have too much, especially when you might need it.
     
  20. jehowe

    jehowe Active Member

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    One big problem our JIT ('just in time' inventory) economy introduces is quick depletion of retail goods and resources in emergencies when trucks stop rolling- think food, water, fuel, medicine, etc. This puts real limits on the cash we carry unless we can spend it fast enough on the things we really need. When the goods run out, cash (and certainly credit) won't be much help. The more urban the area, the faster things will go.

    Not saying having cash isn't a good idea, it can be indispensable. It's just that empty shelves and filling stations are going to be distinct possibilities in real emergencies.