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Puntos de vista - a personal Spain blog

Musings about Spain and Spanish life by Paul Whitelock, hispanophile of 40 years and now resident of Ronda in Andalucía .

Don’t lose your wallet!
Thursday, June 2, 2022 @ 11:00 PM

Pablo de Ronda’s wallet has “gone missing” three times in the last dozen years. Up to now he’s always had it returned. But he mislaid it again last week and hasn’t got it back. He thinks he left it in their hotel in Heilbronn, Germany, where he and his wife were on holiday, but somebody must have found it, removed the cash and thrown the rest away. That’s the worst thing about it, as Pablo explains …..


The first time I “lost” my wallet was outside the paper shop in Ronda one wet Sunday morning, but within 20 minutes I had it back. A passer-by had found it, handed it to a local policía and it was taken straight to the police station, where I had gone to report the loss.

Everything was still present, including the cash. Lucky me!

The second time my wallet went missing, it was nicked from my person in a bar in Montejaque, the village where I live. The montejaqueños were so outraged they investigated the crime, found the perpetrator and I got my wallet back, and eventually the missing cash also. The police were none the wiser, as it had been resolved “in-house”, so to speak.

This was such a relief, as the hassle involved in acquiring new documentation and cards didn’t bear thinking about.

Third time unlucky

The third time my wallet “disappeared” was last week in Germany, where we were on holiday. I either left it in the Italian Ristorante where we had lunch or later in the hotel where we were staying.

Despite phoning both places, the day after, there was no sign of my wallet. I can only assume somebody found it, pocketed the cash and threw the wallet with all its contents away.

Cancelling and ordering new cards

Bank cards were easy to cancel and order anew, either online or via a quick phone call to the bank’s 24-hour emergency number.

Health cards (state and private) were also easy to sort out.

Store and loyalty cards I can deal with as and when.

My Amigos de Paradores card was also no problema.

There were three cards I couldn’t deal with from abroad, namely my driving licence, my TIE (Tarjeta de Identidad de Extranjero) and my tarjeta sesentaycinco (OAP discount card). I have to re-order those in person when I’m back in Spain.

Most cards incur no charge, but a new driving licence costs a somewhat hefty 20,81€ and my Costa Press Club card , surprisingly, 15€.

I also had a RENFE Railcard, but I haven’t investigated replacing that yet.

Catch 22

The most stressful and time-consuming issue was my Covid-19 vaccination certificate. I couldn’t access it online without my health number, which was only on the stolen health card and not lodged in my phone or my memory.

A call to Salud Andalucía produced no helpful response; they couldn’t give me my number over the phone, because of something called protección de datos.

I thought I’d be able to find my number online, but guess what, Baden-Baden Airport is the only airport in the world without WiFi!

Fortunately, my good lady came to the rescue. She recalled that some while ago I had sent her a photo of my certificate. She eventually found it on her mobile and sent it back to me. Phew! Panic over.


As I write this, I am sitting airside at the airport with a very expensive coffee, bags checked in and waiting for our flight. After all that, I bet they won’t even check our certificates at Málaga.

Despite that, it’s been quite a bit of hassle.

Not having any cash and having no means of getting any from the Geldautomat (cajero) without a bank card was also a challenge. I couldn’t buy anything unless my missus was nearby!

So, all things considered, my advice to you is, DON’T LOSE YOUR WALLET!


Further reading:

HOW TO ….. reapply for all your cards …...

En mi bolsa de mano hay …..

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