Yet another question on moneybelts....... whats new......!

Hello everyone,

We just recently returned from Switzerland and wore our RS moneybelts all over the place and travelled worry free. But we did discover that towards the end of our trip the plastic sheath was all crumpled and the back of the belt (touching our bodies) was usually sweaty and that too while travelling in winter.

I am curious as to what people do to minimize the sweatiness "ugh" effect while travelling in summer especially girls. In Switzerland I ended up wearing a shirt underneath my clothese and the moneybelt on top of the shirt before inserting it under my pants. It helped reduce the sweat on the belt, but that would seriously be overkill for the hot weather climate. Any thoughts?

1) Do you regularly change the plastic sheath? Do you put baby powder on the belt? (I seriously considered doing that!)

2) Also for the RS belt, the smaller front pockets (where you would keep cc , etc do not come with a plastic sheath. do you make your own. I tried putting a ziploc bag cut to the size but that didn't work very well.

Posted by pat
victoria, Canada
8721 posts

Well two thoughts. First I don't wear it everyday, leave stuff in hotel safe. Second, the plastic actually makes me sweatier, so I remove it and don't use it at all. My stomach is not a particularily sweaty place, so under most circumstances just ensuring there is a bit of air circulation( I do not wear skin tight tops or waist bands) seems to prevent problem.

One exception was when we were in Rome and it was like 100 degrees,, thank goodness I only wore it on our travel day there, and not the other days.. that kind of heat can make a stone sweat!

Posted by Brad
Gainesville, VA
7870 posts

You may like the moneybelts that aren't plastic lined better. If you use one, you still want to use a ziplock bag to keep your stuff inside dry. I'm not sure it will work a lot better but it might help.

One way or the other. I'd take some extra sweating in the waist over pulling out a wet passport or tickets.

Posted by Jon
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
368 posts

I had the belt kind (not the around the neck kind) and wore it lower down between my pants and underwear. It never touched my body directly and wasn't hot or sweaty at all (even after 4 weeks of wearing it). It was a bit of a pain to get at times and it made using urinals kind of interesting, but it never was a big problem.

Posted by Nancy
Davis, CA
59 posts

To aRies,
I had a similar problem with the plastic sleeve in my Rick Steves money belt getting crumpled on one trip. Last summer I replaced the sleeve with a freezer weight gallon size zipper baggie with the end with the zipper cut off. I slipped the passport and tickets (and the little slips the RS tour wants you to carry) down in the bottom of the bag and folded it over. It folds flat and fits well in the money belt. For some reason it did not crumple like the original sleeve and though the money belt (worn in back) did sometimes get a little damp, it wasn't uncomfortable. We traveled in late June/July to Germany. I just put credit or atm cards in the little pockets so dampness wasn't a problem.

Posted by Audrey
Keizer, Oregon, USA
577 posts

I hope the staff at ETBD read these posts because I think the money belt needs some improvements.

Like posted above, I wear mine between my underwear and outwear. It doesn't get quite as damp there. I have also used Brad's idea of using a ziplock bag for the passport & money.

My travel partner and I have more than one money belt (saved from multiple trips) and we wash them. They dry over night.

I think the size needs to be changed on both the waist and neck pouch. I only use the neck pouch when I'm flying as it is easier to use but it is just not quite big enough. The pocket for the credit card is way too small. Very dificult to get out.

You can buy those little plastic bags at craft stores. I usually take some of those for saving coins but they could be used for credit cards.

Posted by Betsey
New England
293 posts

Rather than a belt around the waist I used this set up:

I purchased what Magellans terms a "secret waist wallet" ( and used two large safety pins to pin it horizontally (zipper was horizontal, I mean, and pins on the inside of the wallet) to my pants' waist. Two reasons for the pins: I do not use a belt and did not want to repeat what one reviewer had happened: he took his belt off for security and the wallet slid down and out and only a friendly stranger brought it to his attention.

I don't wear skin-tight pants and found this very comfortable. I could unzip it easily to take things out or put in. I do not remember it being too sweaty but I did put a ziplock bag in as a first item with the rest of things behind that, sort of a plastic "wall" rather than things in the plastic.

It definitely does save you the "sweaty belt" effect. Hope that helps.

Posted by Ken
Vernon, Canada
21467 posts


First, regarding washing of Money Belts. From what I've seen, most require hand washing with a mild soap, and then air drying. A machine washing on delicate cycle would probably work, but may cause the Belt to wear at an accelerated rate.

I've used both the RS Silk Money Belt and also an Eagle Creek (waist) Money Belt. The EC model is a bit larger, so that's what I use most of the time, although it doesn't have the plastic liner like Rick's. I just use an appropriately sized zip-lok bag for my Passport, so that it doesn't get too damp.

I've found that in hot weather, the back part of the Money Belt does get quite damp, but it's not a problem to wash it when travelling as I normally hand wash other items of clothing as well.

Regarding the small front pockets on the RS Money Belt where credit cards would be kept, these don't really need a plastic liner as credit cards are not usually adversely affected by moisture (although the new "chip" models might be different?). Also, the front compartments are shielded to a certain extent by the rear compartments, so there's not as much of an issue with moisture.

I've found that people tend to find the most comfortable and practical method to wear Money Belts, based on their individual body characteristics. There is no "one size fits all" method for placement of these.


Posted by aRies
Seattle, Washington, United States
91 posts

Hey Pat,
I would be doing the same as you regarding only using the moneybelt on travel days and then storing it in the hotel safe on other days. But since we were using the Swiss Pass which had a control copy with our passport numbers on them, we had to carry it around with us incase they did ask us to show it. We were never asked but who knows... we didn't want to pay fines if they did.I do like Jon and Audrey's idea of wearing it lower and Nancy, Brad, I will try to replace the sleeve witht he freezer bag. That should be thicker than the ziplocs I used. Betsy, I will look at the waistbelt idea.

Posted by aRies
Seattle, Washington, United States
91 posts

This might be a dumb qs but did u wash the belts in the washing machine or by hand?