The Hunt for Loose Change

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I returned from Berlin dressed casually in jeans for the overnight flight. I was so busy with meetings I hadn’t the time to even buy a t-shirt. When I collected my luggage, I was pulled by customs. They didn’t care that I had absolutely ZERO to declare. Their first question: “How much cash do you have on you?” I said about $2,000 and off I went. I even had a withdraw slip from before I left just in case something happened or if my wallet was stolen. I hadn’t spent that either.

They searched everything right down to computers and power cords. The only other time that has taken place was last year when I traveled into London. They wanted to see my ticket and where it was purchased. Was I really returning to London or just visiting? They asked the same question:  “How much cash do you have on you?” In both cases, they were not interested in trinkets. The are looking for CASH.

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The hunt for money is getting really aggressive. Couples with children were not being pulled over. I, traveling alone, became the target. In the case of London, I was dressed in a tie jumping on the train from Brussels after high levels meetings there. OK, I thought, perhaps I stood out since everyone else was casual that day being formally dressed. This time, I was casual. That did not matter. Perhaps they profile those traveling alone. Guess a new business will emerge where you rent a family to travel.