Keep Every Scrap of Paper!
Posted by jonathanfryer on Thursday, 20th March, 2008
Being totally freelance, I’ve long been trained by my accountant to keep every receipt or scrap of paper relating to finance — quite a challenge in some of the places I go to, not to mention the headache of drawing up the quarterly accounts in which half a dozen different currencies tend to appear. But this week I’m really glad I do hoard everything. I was recently in Ras Al Khaimah (one of the more obscure United Arab Emirates, from which I did a ‘From Our Own Correspondent’) and tried to wtihdraw some money from an Emirates Bank cashpoint in the Manar Mall. When I tried with my debit card, the transcation was declined. So I then tried with my credit card, and the same thing happened. Fortunately I ddn’t throw the ‘transaction declined’ slips away, because when my recent statements arrived, I discovered that both amounts had in fact been debited from my accounts. NatWest is on to the case, though they say it might take six weeks to resolve. At least be have the hard evidence! So, the morale of the tale is: beware of magic money machines. And be sure to hang on to every scrap of paper until you know it is safe to throw it away!