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Neck Wallet with no collar top?

Does a neck wallet work better with a collared shirt?

Or does wearing it cross-body cover the strap? Like under a v-neck shirt?

I suppose bra wearers could loop it through the bra strap on the shoulder to keep it concealed with a v-neck.

Is the strap long enough to wear comfortably cross-body? Or will it be resting in your arm-pit? Ewwww!

Are any of the money belts, neck wallets or hidden pockets lined with a moisture barrier?

Posted by
6814 posts

If your concerned about the strap showing, then yeah, I suppose a tight necked shirt with a collar would be best. When we wear our neck wallets, my wife wears her around her neck in front, under her shirt; I tend to wear it crossbody. The straps on ours are long enough that it can hang all the way down to your waist if you wish.

But to your original concern, we really do not care if the strap shows a bit. The bigger concern is how much stuff you think you need to put in there, it can get to be a thick heavy hunk if you do not limit yourself. Passport, CC, and a bit of cash is about it for back-up. My primary CC and some cash are in my front pocket for easy use.

Posted by
4527 posts

I don't wear neck wallets but I'm certainly familiar with them. They are simple wallets that hang from a long cord around your neck and are typically worn under clothing.

They work well with any type of shirt since they hang low enough not to be seen. I suppose you could wear one cross-body, but I'm not sure why you would want to as it would probably be uncomfortable.

If you're confused about how to wear one, I would suggest watching this Rick Steves video about money belts and neck wallets.

Posted by
379 posts

You're much better off using a normal bag, preferably a deep tote shape, with a crossbody strap and a zipper top. Keep your wallet deep at the bottom of the bag. Better to have to rummage for it than have it easy for a pickpocketer to grab.

Don't use one of those fussy little travel bags with a million zippers. You're more likely to forget where you put everything. They also make you a mark.

If all your items are deep in one big compartment of one big bag that's zipped closed, they are easy to keep track of. Don't keep anything in your pockets, or outside pockets of a bag. Keep your bag slung around to your front so you can keep an arm casually over it. You'll be fine.

Uniqlo has a bunch of good options: (flip this around so the folded-over side is against your body)


Posted by
4418 posts

Money belts have a removable vinyl pouch to protect bills and absorbable items, but I prefer a simple zip top lunch or snack 'baggie'...they are softer and more flexible. Use the cheapest, single closure top ones.
You could test whether a safety pin in your shoulder seam would keep the strap (worn cross body) hidden. Don't pin the strap directly to the shirt, but let it run loose in the gap of the pin when closed. I don't like straps showing either.
But if you typically wear a belt, I would get this kind (if your physique allows it to not bulge)

Posted by
9782 posts

I use a neck wallet that goes over one shoulder and hangs down. I’m short, but it’s not touching my armpit. I do put a safety pin around the strap and my bra strap, but even if I didn’t there’s no way it could slide off underneath your clothes without your knowledge.

Posted by
24936 posts

I'm a female who normally travels between the beginning of May and the end of September. All my summer-travel tops are collarless. I don't want the strap of a neck wallet to show; that might be an invitation to someone to grab it and pull it off my head, or even cut it. I use a money belt on hotel-change days and just leave extra valuables in my hotel room, locked in the suitcase, on other days, so this isn't an everyday problem.

The money belt is definitely bulge-y (though not uncomfortable to me), so I've thought about sewing the pouch from a neck wallet inside the waistband of my slacks at a spot where it wouldn't be obvious. But I travel with three (usually) pairs of slacks. Others have mentioned here that you can buy a "hidden pocket" to sew into your clothes.

Posted by
2335 posts

For trip in 2019 I wore the RS silk neck wallet crossbody on the opposite side from my crossbody purse, ie neck wallet to the right, purse to the left. For comfort, I took off the plastic slider and tied a knot in the strap at the length I wanted. Most of my shirts had stand up collars so the strap didn’t show. I had to be careful with boat neck shirts. In all it worked ok.

Last year I wore a Stashbandz money belt. Much better — more comfortable and, since it has 4 pockets, no unslightly lumps.

I put money, passport in snack size ziplock bags when using both styles.

Posted by
4328 posts

DH and I both wear neck pouches, although he sometimes uses a moneybelt instead. His is the RS silk pouch. Mine is made of lingerie material, with a soft ribbon- like strap that i got on Amazon. We use the same sandwich size zip bag hack to keep our passports and extra cash dry. DH wears his around his neck. I prefer to wear mine cross body, and do loop it around my bra strap to keep it away from my neck. It is adjustable, and I keep it so that it hangs just above my waistband. The only time I've had a problem with it showing is with t shirts that have a lower scoop neckline.

With the old adage about not putting all your eggs in one basket in mind, I'm averse to having all my valuables (especially my passport) in my purse. My travel wallet only has cash for one day, one credit card, and my DL. That is kept at the bottom of an interior zippered pocket in my purse, which is my regular daily purse and not one with all the time consuming zips, snaps, and locks.

Posted by
4527 posts

there’s no way it could slide off underneath your clothes without your knowledge.

Andrea, actually that can happen - and it did on my first trip overseas about 27+ years ago. I was in England in early October and was wearing a light raincoat and walking around town. I got to my first stop (Twinings) and was getting ready to pay for my tea when I realized my neck wallet was gone. Evidently it had fallen off while I was walking around town and I didn't notice (probably because of the longer raincoat). And dumb me, I had everything in there - money, credit cards AND passport.

I spent a frantic half day getting a new passport and some money from AMEX, and made my way home the next day. Luckily, about two weeks later, the owner of the B&B I stayed at mailed me the wallet, complete with passport, credit cards and money! Evidently a student had found it and turned it into the police. SInce I had reported it, they had my local address and sent it to her and she sent it on to me. I was so grateful that I got the address of the student and mailed her the money (about £50). But I have never ever worn a neck wallet or money belt after that - just a secure crossbody bag with zippers. And I NEVER put all my eggs in one basket anymore. :) I only take 2 credit cards with me, and leave one at the hotel.

Posted by
2081 posts

When I travel, I always wear the neck-style RSteves-brand wallet under my t -shirt/blouse/jacket whatever..depending on seasonal attire. Obviously early spring/fall/winter travel is easier to "hide" it. I pretty much always wear a scarf tied around my neck to "hide" the bulge of the neck wallet. For summer, select some very light-weight cotton scarves and tie them loosely with the knot just above where the money-wallet would fall, if that makes sense. Otherwise, yep, it is one big crunchy square that stands out like "what is that?" on my chest...not at all attractive. Often I will slip the waist-style RSteves money belt in our luggage, just so I have that as an option, if there is a situation where I do not want to wear the neck one. But, I always use an safety pin, in addition to the clasp, just to avoid the highly-unlikely situation of the clasp working itself open..

My husband wears his holster style (under his arm). Does it get wet and gross sometimes?.......oh gosh, yes....especially when temps are in the high 80s and above......yuck. How do we deal with that, we take two or three of them (if it is hot weather) and switch his stuff to a fresh one (while the other is being washed). We also use a very light-weight baggy as an extra double moisture protection for the passport, etc. For his, I have adjusted the cord length "just so" to fit around his neck/under his arm, so he does not have to deal with the plastic cord/string adjusters driving him crazy while he wears them.

Oh, and to further explain a bit, what goes into my spouse's under-arm storage pretty much NEVER comes out except in our hotel room. His is the "deep storage." If he will need his passport on certain days (like flight days), then he wears a second neck wallet that slips down under his cotton, dress style, button-up shirt (he does not wear knit shirts) in the front, where he places his passport in the backpocket of the neck-wallet for ease in accessing it .

Try a few things, and you will determine what you like best.

If we are in a "protected-type" situation (private dinner in a super safe location or ( on a small ship..because the purser keeps the passports on those and those typically have cabin safes), there are times I will stick my neck wallet in a zipped inner pocket of my travel purse, which is always then worn cross-body (so it is not set down anyway...always on "my person." But, those situations are rare.

Posted by
2081 posts

I just saw Mardee's post ahead of mine. I will add, that before each trip, we check the cords on our neck wallets and often sew reinforcements to the connect points......just to have them avoid breaking off (things can/do happen). For my spouse, his would just fall into his shirt and be caught by the waist of his belted pants.....but for me, I can see how (if the connections came loose), it could fall right down to the ground.

Reminds me of a funny story a friend told me about: a friend of hers who was wearing some old underwear that the elastic had gotten way toooo loose....she was wearing a loose summer dress and was having trouble keeping them up......apparently as they fell to her ankles, she gracefully stepped out of them and just kept walking in an otherwise dignified manner, acting as though she was totally unaware..leaving her underwear on the floor of shopping mall....LOL. Stuff happens

Posted by
155 posts

I don't want the strap of a neck wallet to show; that might be an
invitation to someone to grab it and pull it off my head, or even cut

This. That strap showing just shouts out "Tourist with good stuff here." And you hope if someone tries to snatch it you don't get dragged down the street by the neck with it.

Keep your wallet deep at the bottom of the bag. Better to have to
rummage for it than have it easy for a pickpocketer to grab.

If it's a pickpocket, yes. But as a friend in the US pointed out to me, a thief is more likely to grab the entire purse. And yes, my purse, a waist-pack usually, is always either around my waist under my shirt and to the side and low where I can keep a hand over it or worn cross-body with the bag in front. Works great around my waist seated in a restaurant. It has a back pocket that is the right size for my wallet and I can access the cash/cards without removing the wallet from the pack. And yes, waist-packs are making a comeback. I saw lots of them worn cross-body in the airports during the holidays. Also saw lots of carry-on size luggage/backpacks coming around the baggage claim carousel and lots of spinners rolling through the terminal.

Reminds me of a funny story a friend told me about: a friend of hers
who was wearing some old underwear that the elastic had gotten way
toooo loose....she was wearing a loose summer dress and was having
trouble keeping them up......apparently as they fell to her ankles,
she gracefully stepped out of them and just kept walking in an
otherwise dignified manner, acting as though she was totally
unaware..leaving her underwear on the floor of shopping mall....LOL.
Stuff happens

I was seated on a plane one time, a young man wearing baggy, underwear-showing pants got on a few rows ahead of me. As he was putting his stuff in the overhead, he took his belt off. Apparently the belt was the only thing keeping the pants up because they promptly fell to the floor. He reached down quickly and pulled them up again. Wonder if he kept wearing that style? Or if he was used to pulling his pants up from the floor.

But this thread is about neck wallets. I might need to consider a hidden pocket safety-pinned somewhere. Or as someone pointed out in another thread, diaper-pins.

Posted by
12717 posts

I don't wear a neck wallet (prefer the money belt) but some friends do. They had the kind that had the plastic adjustable knob on the strap which she felt dug into their necks. They would also show above a tee shirt neck in the back. She took the strap apart, removed the plastic adjuster and tied it back together.

Here's a link to Rick's so you can see the plastic adjuster and also see there is probably plenty of room to readjust it to your specific need without the knob.

The think about the bra wallet is that they are usually not big enough to hold a passport. They will hold credit cards but not much else.

Will you be wearing pants with a belt? One of the hidden pockets that go over a belt loop might work.

Whatever you decide try it out at home first, lol!

Posted by
1425 posts

Yes, the strap of a neck wallet can show with certain types of tops. I don't much care if it shows a bit. How would anyone know that it isn't my bra straps? Of course, that could be more of an issue with someone who is male-presenting.

My DH uses a wallet that clips onto his belt loop, and he wears it in a front pocket rather than a back pocket. He also sometimes uses a money belt. I tried one once and found it to be too hot, and my passport became bent from sitting down with it on.

I use the neck wallet only in transit (airports/planes, trains, and such). Besides that, I use an anti-theft bag. I have certain things that go in certain compartments, which are different sizes, so it is very simple to remember what goes where. The one I'm currently using is a dark-grey, denim-like material that is a "hobo" style, cross-body bag. There is nothing at all about it that screams tourist. I've been using bags like this for multiple travels for the past 9 years, and I think they work very well. At least, I've never been pick-pocketed.

Of course, being aware of one's surroundings is also important. Also, as others have noted, I don't put all my eggs in one basket. I'll have some items in my neck pouch and some in my Travelon bag when in transit, or I'll have some items in the room safe and some in my Travelon bag when at a location.

Posted by
4418 posts

And yes, waist-packs are making a comeback. I experienced the practicality of it on a recent trip to Costa Rica. Some years ago I bought a lightweight packable one from Eddie Bauer and never used it until this recent trip. I used it as a cross body bag every day. Hands free and securely close to the body for the travel days with luggage and in and out of shared transfer vans, and for bird watching, it meant I could easily carry my backpack for water, snacks, rain coat, all the birding bits, and have some cash, lip balm. phone and small camera in the waist-pack very close but not in the way of the binoculars. I was sold. I am heading to Italy for numerous weeks next winter and trying to decide how to make one a little more upscale and flatter to wear under coats....or just buy this one as it has already been ergonomically designed.

Posted by
130 posts

Thank You, Maria F, for the post about the sling backpack you used on your last trip. I have a bag styled like yours I have never used since my Mother gave it to me for Christmas a few years ago. I am going to dig mine out to use during my upcoming trip which is only 37 days away--Yikes, I'd better get busy! I'm glad you shared how you chose to distribute your belongings in the pack. Your post is appreciated. I'm off to find mine!

Traveler Girl

Posted by
4418 posts

@Traveler Girl. You are welcome. If Rick's forum ever moved to emoji responses, you would get a little 'care' emoji. Hope it works for you. Have a wonderful trip.

Posted by
4019 posts

Broken record here. Does anyone remember those?

I use a StashBandz like Horsewoofie linked above. Note that you can buy them from other online stores, including Amazon. I switched to that style of money belt many years ago after trying every other style available. At that time I was heavier and much curvier than I am now, but I'll never go back to any of the styles discussed so far. It was a different brand and only touted as a runner's belt way back then. Since that time, any similar products have also listed their usefulness as a traveler's accessory.

I find that the StashBandz step-in and pull-up style is much more comfortable and much more secure. Needless to say, it should be worn under your clothes, not like the pictures show. I never take a wallet.

I put my few cards, passport, cash and emergency info in ziploc plastic bags with the zip part cut off so the contents can breathe and the shape is more flexible. My passport does curve a bit after a day of carrying it that way but there's no chance it will fold and highly unlikely that it will be easily removed from my body.

For the life of me, I cannot understand why anyone carries a wallet in Europe. It defeats the concept of not putting all your eggs in one basket. Even way back in the late 70's I distributed my traveler's checks (remember those?) around in a variety of places to help avoid someone taking them all in one grab.

Good luck with your choice. FWIW, the neck wallet was the most uncomfortable and annoying of the styles I tried. I could find absolutely no way to wear it that worked for me.