What exactly goes in a wallet? We can think of a few things. Find out below.
Someone should be playing a sweet, sweet guitar riff because you officially have your first wallet. Congratulations! This is a big step in growing up because, let’s be honest, anyone and everyone with good finances have a wallet nearby. Plus, your first wallet is a super big deal because, unlike most wallets and purses you’ll have later in life, your first one is a gift. Maybe it’s a birthday present or a reward for doing well in school, or maybe it’s just your parent’s way of saying you’re getting older.
No matter the reason, now that you have a wallet or purse, you’ll need to organize it.
Nothing is as inconvenient as having to scramble through your wallet for the things you need when you need them. Just imagine taking five minutes to gather your cash or find your debit before paying for something at the register. From a social standpoint, holding up the line at the cash register is a bit of a faux pas – that means it’s something most people try to avoid doing in public.
That’s why we’ve put together this quick article to teach you all about the importance of a wallet or purse, how to use them, and how to make your overall shopping experience super pleasant. You know what they say, with a great wallet comes great responsibility. So let’s get to it.
The Importance of Keeping Your Wallet Organized
Keeping your wallet organized does more than save time at the cash register. More importantly, it’s a seemingly small step to leading an organized life. Adults with great organizational skills are far less likely to forget their due dates or get fees when compared to their disorganized counterparts.
Plus, and this is especially true for wallets, having an overstuffed wallet can make sitting down super uncomfortable. And overstuffed wallets and purses make it easier for your cards, IDs, etc., to get broken. And let us tell you, right now, getting an ID replaced can be a hassle. And if your debit or credit card gets damaged without you knowing it, then you’ll have to go through the embarrassment of being declined in a store. And, paper money could get torn, receipts you need might fade, you could accidentally use a credit card instead of a debit, and the list goes on.
Organizing your wallet helps prevent all of that stuff and even saves you money. And, just so you know, a big part of organizing anything is figuring out what doesn’t need to be there. So, the question is – what exactly should be in a wallet or purse? Read on to find out.
What To Have In Your Wallet
Here is a list of things you should have in your wallet or purse and why.
Identification Cards: Photo identification like driver’s licenses, state IDs, school IDs, membership cards, and more are vital to have in a wallet. You’ll need to provide ID to law enforcement, banks, cashiers, jobs, mail carriers, and more at some point in your life. Plus, if you lose your wallet, having an ID in it makes it easy for someone to return it to you.
In many states, it’s the law to have a government-issued ID on or near your person when you’re in public.
These days, a debit card is the primary and preferred way of purchasing goods. It’s quick, easy, and convenient. Plus, in a pinch, you can use your debit card at an ATM to get cash or check your balance. But remember not to use most ATMs too often because they come with fees, even for checking your balance. When the time comes, ask your bank or credit union which ATMs , if any, are free for you to use.
Generally, a person with good credit doesn’t use their credit card too often. That said, a credit card is great for emergency purchases – especially if that purchase is expensive. Adults use their credit cards if they have sudden car problems, for vacation, or just to build their credit. You can’t have your own credit card until you’re at least 18. But it’s never too soon to think about financial resources.
Despite debit being the most used purchase method, cash has its place. For example, smaller vendors might only accept cash. Fundraisers, garage sales, small shops, and more are examples of that. That said, it’s never a great idea to have large quantities of cash in your wallet, you could lose it, or it could get damaged in your wallet. Most adults have less than $50.00 in their wallets. Try to keep your cash balance around or under that same amount.
Your insurance card could come in handy if you get injured and need to go to the hospital. Plus, it can often count as a secondary form of ID which is something most banks require.
A medical card has all of your potential allergies or conditions on it so that, if need be, doctors will know how to treat you. It’s an item that you might never need, but it’s better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it.
Keys only apply to those that prefer a purse or clutch over a wallet. A purse is a great place to store your keys when you’re out and about. And it’s a lot harder for keys to fall out of a handbag than in your pocket.
Here is a quick list of things you shouldn’t carry in your wallet.
Social Security Card
A lot of adults are guilty of carrying their social security cards with them. But, honestly, it’s best to keep your card in a safe place at home. If you use your wallet and a dishonest person picks it up, they could use your social security number to commit identity theft. And identity theft is a tough thing to overcome.
Just like your social security card, your birth certificate is too valuable to risk losing in public. Keep it safe at home. When you get older, you can even open a safety deposit box at a bank or credit union and store your most personal information there.
Passwords / Account Numbers
It’s not a good idea to write your passwords down on a sheet of paper or store that paper in your wallet. If you ever misplace your wallet, you’d have to change all of your passwords immediately. And, to be clear, it’s not a good idea to save that information in your notes app either. Don’t store your bank account numbers in your wallet, either.
Bank account numbers are different than the number on your debit card. If a debit card gets fraud on it, the card is closed, and a new one is reissued. But, if your account number is compromised, the account has to be closed, and all new information needs to be issued. Basically, losing an account number is a hassle and leaves you vulnerable.
Wallets are not made to hold a large amount of coins. That means the coins will fall out in your pocket or on the floor when you pull your wallet out. Anyone with a purse, clutch, etc., will have a much easier time storing coins. But wallet owners leave the coins at home or invest in a fanny pack.
How To Organize a Wallet
Most wallets have a clear front slot for your ID. Use it for your most official ID, which is typically a license but can also be a school ID. When opened, your wallet will likely have three or more pockets on either side. Use the first pocket for your debit card, the second for credit, and the 3rd for gift cards or membership cards. You’ll want your debit and credit card upfront because it makes it easier to get them when you need to. Your wallet will also have a long back pocket that’s made for cash. Some wallets might have a little clasp in the middle to store additional money. Our advice is not to store too many bills in that space, as it makes it easy for them to fall out when you’re reaching for your debit or credit card.
Put cards you need but don’t frequently use in the back of the wallet. And try to avoid storing notes and non-essential items in your wallet as it just makes it bulky and uncomfortable to sit on.
For purses, handbags, etc., store different types of items in different pockets. For example, use your innermost pocket for debit, credit, and small bills, and check to see if you have a coin pocket built into the purse. For those with clutches, only store the essential items you’ll need. An overstuffed clutch won’t close or at least won’t close and stay closed. That means only bring your ID, credit, and debit. Find a different safe place for everything else.
Congratulations! You’ve learned how to organize a wallet. Want to learn more about money and how to use it? Check out our other articles for more info!