Let me try and answer some of the above. It’s correct, it is not necessary to carry £3,000 with me, but it is my choice to do so. It gives me, right or wrong, weird or not, a degree of comfort and security.
My point in all this, is that if £10k is the amount allowed by law to be taken out, then I should not be subjected to 30 minutes of questioning, threatened with confiscation of the money, have all my visiting cards copied as well as having to account for my entire stay as if I had to provide an alibi.
It’s my free choice to carry what in the UK seems to R & C to be a large amount, but in Switzerland is not. A clash of cultures perhaps? I have no grouse about being stopped and asked how much cash I have. It happens frequently traveling into Italy and France from Switzerland, I declare and I’m on my way.
Why do I carry this amount. Well, you are almost answering it yourselves. Calling up call centres to tell them where you’re traveling. Validating the card for a month’s travel in Europe, Pilots having to go back to hotels to get some cash. Queuing up at ATM’s where you risk being followed and mugged for your cash, as what is small to you is a weeks wage in some places. How many of us have had an approval not removed from a card, then you go to use it and its declined as you’re over the limit?
I have never called a call centre to tell them where I’m going. With 15 credit and debit cards, both personal and corporate I would need a day to do that. Though I have been rung a few times to confirm it’s me. If the card does not work for whatever reason, I put cash down instead. So easy and gives me a large degree of security.
NT, it is also large, mainstream companies that give discounts for cash. You have to haggle a bit sometimes, and I won’t name them here, but should we ever meet I’ll be happy to give you some examples.