Saturday, March 24, 2012

Travel Writer Fails to Learn a Lesson

An article in the Seattle Times (March 25, 2012) is headlined MAKE THINGS RIGHT WHEN YOUR JOURNEY GOES WRONG. It's by Carol Pucci, one of the newspaper's travel writers. She tells the story about how she was in Havana, Cuba last November, preparing to fly to Mexico, when Cubana Airlines canceled her flight.

"How would we pay for another night in Havana?" she says. "We were almost out of cash, and American credit and ATM cards are useless in Cuba." Her problem was solved in part by Cubana Airlines, and in part by an agent for Delta who--after her heartfelt entreaty, stretched some rules. But Pucci still doesn't get it.

For "Lessons learned," she writes: "Don't assume the worst when it comes to travel, and never be afraid to ask." Here's the lesson Puicci should have learned:

"When you travel--especially when to a foreign land--carry at least an extra thousand dollars for unforeseen emergencies."

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Can I legally hold more than $10,000 in euros without telling the IRS?

True, the IRS says “If you have a financial interest in or signature authority over a foreign financial account, including a bank account, brokerage account, mutual fund, trust, or other type of foreign financial account, the Bank Secrecy Act may require you to report the account yearly to the Internal Revenue Service by filing Form TD F 90-22.1, Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBAR).” However, why use a foreign account at all (assuming you are not trying to dodge income taxes, which I would never recommend)?

One reason may be that you are losing confidence in the U.S. dollar. Despite the euro’s current problems, now may be a good time to buy euros. Or, you may decide that in the long run, the Canadian dollar is a better bet.

Another reason is that you may want to keep some money out of the hands of creditors, criminals, hackers and ex mates. In my e-book Invisible Money, I discuss various solutions (plus how to open a Canadian bank account, should you decide to go that route.)

So then—the answer to “Can I legally hold more than $10,000 in euros without telling the IRS?” is simple. Just buy the euros or loonies from the AAA, your bank, or from sellers on Craigslist, and keep the cash in the USA. The results are the same as if they were in a foreign account, are they not?

As to where to keep the cash, I recommend you check out Invisible Money.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Free e-book, "PRIVACY 101" about why never to receive mail at your home address

If you already have my book How to be Invisible, then you already have this information. However, what about your friends? Are any of them still receiving mail at home? If so, why not alert them to the dangers by forwarding this message on to them?

Click here for your free e-book.