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The Leg Wallet
A proper travel wallet or a waste of money?

The leg wallet is a good alternative if you don't want to wear your valuables around your waist or neck. It's not a common way for women to conceal their money and papers but I've tried one and it does work well.

Most of them are backed by material that is often waterproof, like neoprene, and I've found it to be quite comfortable (the one I have is the Eagle Creek Leg Wallet) although it could use a little more velcro. Unlike the neck wallet and travel money belt, it doesn't sit on one of the sweatiest parts of your body.

The basic model has one wide or two thinner stretchy bands that close with velcro around your lower leg, somewhere above the ankle. It has a pocket or two, with velcro, although some people prefer the zippered leg wallet.

If you choose this option, also called a leg pouch or leg money belt, make sure you test the fit first. We aren't accustomed to wearing things around our calves and this might take a bit of getting used to.

If you wear skirts, this isn't the right item for you - unless you wear a long skirt and make sure you don't hike it up to cross your legs, leaving your leg wallet visible to prying eyes.

The leg wallet won't work if you wear shorts, or if your trousers are too tight at the bottom, preventing you from reaching your money. If you fill the pouch up, it will show.

And remember - getting to your stash means you'll have to bend down a lot. For the older traveler this isn't as easy - and even if you're younger, leaning forward with a full backpack on your back can propel you face down onto the road, as I've found out to my interest. So make sure you keep enough money for your daily use elsewhere.

That said, most thieves won't think of looking around your lower leg for your money. If you carry some cash in your pocket and get mugged, you'll have a better chance of saving the bulk of it if it's near your ankle.

Speaking of ankles...

Beware! (Roger Price via Flickr CC)

Just a bit lower and you can wrap some of your belongings around your ankle.

Some women like this option, but most of these ankle wallets are small and may only be large enough to carry cash and cards.

Also they are usually made for men, who tend to be larger than we are. So make sure you try it out first, as I've found some models to be uncomfortable.

If you don't need it to hold your passport - some women prefer to carry both a money belt around the waist and a second stash for cash elsewhere - this could be a good solution.

This type of pouch doesn't work if you're wearing sandals or lightweight shoes - or if you plan to get your feet wet regularly, if you're crossing back and forth across streams for example...

One model looks like a sock - it has a zipper along the top of the hem - so you're actually wearing a sock rather than a separate item. Again, these are small and only useful if used in tandem with another money belt combination.

The same goes for the arm band wallet - great for keeping a credit card and a few bills on you while you play tennis but not useful for heavy duty travel.


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