What should I keep in my wallet?
May 27, 2021 12:28 PM   Subscribe

I’ve just got a new wallet — the type that shows up if you search for ‘ladies’ wallet’ on Google Images, for example. It’s slightly roomier than my old one. What things would be cool to keep there, and also what shouldn’t I keep in there?

I’m looking for things no larger than about the size of a stack of, say, ~5 credit cards.

In addition to the usual coins and cards I already have:

- a Bluetooth tracker
- a mini sewing kit

I plan to add:

- an email address, but not all my personal details to try to minimise ID theft risk (am I on the right track with this at all?)
- I’ve got a matchbook? could be cool for when people ask me for a light
- stamps
- maybe antihistamines if I can find a less crushable packaging than blister pack

I have no need for condoms, and I’m undecided on a credit-card multi-tool. Really interested to hear responses of any stripe!
posted by lokta to Grab Bag (29 answers total) 20 users marked this as a favorite
 
Best answer: I keep an Ohto Minimo pen in there - it's ridiculously tiny, and not super comfortable to use for more than a few minutes, but it's come in handy a surprising number of times.
posted by theodolite at 12:34 PM on May 27 [4 favorites]


Dangit you said no multi tool (but in case you change your mind)
posted by Glinn at 12:46 PM on May 27 [2 favorites]


As an alternative to the credit card multi-tool, check out tactical hair clips. :)

A credit card-sized portable power bank could be useful. Also, a charging cable adapter kit.
posted by stormyteal at 12:51 PM on May 27 [1 favorite]


Best answer: Bandaid or two. Good for scrapes and surprise ill-fitting shoes.

"If found, please contact" phone number - possibly more likely to be used than email, Kids These Days
posted by february at 12:52 PM on May 27 [10 favorites]


Bandaids
Pain reliever
Duct tape
posted by NotLost at 12:53 PM on May 27 [1 favorite]


List of drugs, allergies, medical conditions, and contact information for emergencies
Breath strip pack
Some bits of paper to go with that fancy pen theodolite recommeded.
posted by Ftsqg at 12:53 PM on May 27 [1 favorite]


Oh, yeah. Rite in the Rain has wallet-size notebooks that are cool.
posted by stormyteal at 12:57 PM on May 27 [2 favorites]


an email address, but not all my personal details to try to minimise ID theft risk (am I on the right track with this at all?)

Are you keeping your IDs and cards somewhere else?
posted by zamboni at 12:58 PM on May 27 [3 favorites]


Best answer: If you use your email address publicly, then it can be pretty easily tied to your public identity, so you may want to associate it with a special "in case my wallet is lost" email address: PleaseReturnMyWallet@gmail.com, maybe?

DON'T KEEP in wallet: May be obvious, but do NOT keep your Social Security card in your wallet. Also, no PINs or passwords unless you write them to yourself in unbreakable code or in another language. Don't put a spare house or car key in your wallet, because your ID has your address and your car registration or insurance card will have your make/model/plate#.

TO KEEP: What about a laminated copy of a poem you like, or maybe even one you'd like to memorize? You can put it out and practice in a more mindful, less-online moment of Zen.

Breath strips. Antacid strips or flat antacid packets.

A hair elastic; the coated kind are flatter and less bulky than rubber bands.

A couple paper clips to help you Macgyver almost anything.

A wallet-size First Aid card? Not necessarily this one, but it was the first I'd found.

Two Bandaids, one full size and one of the tiny ones to cover a paper cut.

A packet of wet wipe/sanitizer. They're small, square, and great for hands or wherever you have to put your hands/arms.

They also make small squares of stain removers in flat, wallet-sized packets.

A few squares of blotting paper if you don't carry a compact but don't want a shiny nose.

In the old days, I'd carry a teeny, flat, sturdy mirror to check my teeth/makeup, but the self-facing camera on the phone has replaced that.

As a professional organizer, I caution you against putting ALL of these things in your wallet, but I love reading everyone's tips.
posted by The Wrong Kind of Cheese at 1:10 PM on May 27 [6 favorites]




Mini mirror, if that's a thing that might be useful. And nthing bandaids, they're so often helpful.
posted by brainmouse at 1:30 PM on May 27 [1 favorite]


Blister bandage/moleskin in particular.
posted by praemunire at 1:33 PM on May 27 [2 favorites]


A couple of stamps, so you always have one on you if you need to mail something. This is like the most useful thing I've started doing in my adulthood.

A credit card shaped bottle opener.
posted by geegollygosh at 1:37 PM on May 27 [3 favorites]


In my wallet - postage stamps, scraps of paper with info that should be captured, gift cards.

In my purse, way more stuff.
posted by theora55 at 1:41 PM on May 27 [2 favorites]


It’s similar to a credit card multi-tool, which I see you’re undecided about, but I have and love the Victorinox Swiss Card Nailcare - I think I have a previous version. I use the glass nail file, scissors, and pen most frequently.
posted by insectosaurus at 1:56 PM on May 27 [2 favorites]


Maybe a few safety pins in a couple of sizes.
posted by edencosmic at 1:59 PM on May 27 [3 favorites]


I actually do keep an extra car key in my wallet, the kind that just unlocks the door but won't start the car. It's saved me multiple times when I locked the keys in the car!
Modern cars may be sort of different, though.
posted by exceptinsects at 2:32 PM on May 27 [2 favorites]


A couple paper clips

I was going to say this as well - I've surprisingly had a few times when it would have been really useful to have a paper clip. Mostly but not only for changing out SIM cards on phones. Though if you have a sewing kit, it might be redundant.
posted by trig at 2:37 PM on May 27 [1 favorite]


A little plastic flosser pokey thing.
The slimmest of mirrors to note when you need the above.
Band aid.
Two advil.
A Xanax, if you roll that way.
Two quarters, for outlying parking situations.
posted by A Terrible Llama at 3:11 PM on May 27 [2 favorites]


Oh: disposable contact lenses if you either need them or travel with someone who needs them.
posted by A Terrible Llama at 3:13 PM on May 27 [1 favorite]


If you want to do the duct tape, just wind some tape around an old gift card a few times. This has come in handy for me multiple times.
posted by Night_owl at 3:25 PM on May 27 [4 favorites]


Best answer: If you wear glasses, lens wipes.

Do not carry your vaccination card! Take a photo of it to keep on your phone, leave the card safe at home.
posted by ejs at 3:44 PM on May 27 [3 favorites]


How about some sort of mini led torch. I found this option just now, but I'm sure there are other options if you do a bit of research
posted by piyushnz at 3:47 PM on May 27 [2 favorites]


I keep a Credit Card Sized Magnifying Lens that comes in handy for the tiniest print / if I've forgotten my reading glasses.
posted by travertina at 3:55 PM on May 27 [2 favorites]


Teeny tiny USB drive - I carry one for saving things to print at self-serve printers (e.g. FedEx, the printer at work if I'm there but my laptop stayed home) and rarely getting a file from someone else. You can get combo USB / micro USB drives to move files among devices, if that sounds handy.
posted by momus_window at 4:49 PM on May 27 [1 favorite]



I keep a Credit Card Sized Magnifying Lens that comes in handy for the tiniest print / if I've forgotten my reading glasses.


When I'm having a tough time reading teeny tiny print, I use the zoom function on my phone's camera. I don't bother taking a picture (usually), just blow up the print. It's saved a lot of squinting.
posted by kate4914 at 11:24 PM on May 27 [2 favorites]


Best answer: A baby photo!
posted by Sweetchrysanthemum at 8:44 AM on May 28 [1 favorite]


A little plastic flosser pokey thing.

This has been a thing for me lately, and it's awesome. And after this thread, now I'm rethinking my 'Stamps in the wallet? Is it 1992?' stance.
posted by pseudophile at 9:09 AM on May 28 [1 favorite]


A small piece of moleskin and a couple You Are Beautiful stickers.
posted by 10ch at 8:01 PM on May 29


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