What to do with coins in a minimalist wallet

Posted on March 23, 2015 by David Bruce

Coins in leather wallet

Minimalist wallets are great, that's why you're on this website right now. They reduce bulk and add style to our every day carry. However, if there is one thing we hear more often than anything else in the slim wallet world, it is "but where do my coins go?". This issue does seem to stir up some fairly heated debate (scroll down to Simon44's comment) over in the comments of some of our YouTube videos! It's a very valid question, and one that it is about time we addressed.

Up until a few years ago, before I had seen the light, I used to carry around a very bulky wallet with one of these little zip up coin compartments. I would store all the change I got in here, and felt like I needed all those coins on me at all times 'just in case'. It was when talking to a friend he made me realise how little I actually ever used these coins, and that I could  get rid of this pretty massive wallet that made my pocket look like it had a tumour growing from it. I now don't bother carrying any coins at all, though that won't be for everyone, so this article is going to be all about what you can do with coins, and still keep a minimalist wallet. Here's a rundown of your options as I see it.

Thick coin wallet with slim Trove wallet

My wallet when I carried coins, compared to my current TROVE Wallet

Option 1: Don't carry coins at all

This might sound a bit daunting at first, and it's not going to be realistic or comfortable for everyone, but it is the ultimate solution for some. As I said, I went from carrying all my coins around on a daily basis, to none at all. If you happen to live or work in a large city, this is probably going to be possible for you, thanks to the wide availability of contactless payments for low value transactions. Even in more rural areas you can usually pay for most things on card.

Payment by card isn't always possible, but you can always carry a few notes on you for those 'just in case' moments. When you collect coins in the form of change, you can be a hero and drop it all in the nearest charity bucket - because you're just that loaded - or you can slip them into a pocket or bag until you have chance to transfer them to your coin jar at home, or some other place you like to keep them.

Option 2: The secret trouser pocket

Maybe you've decided that you want a minimalist wallet, because it's comfortable and stylish, but you also want to have a few coins on you. There are plenty of valid reasons for not wanting to let go of coins, such as needing them for public transport, supermarket trolleys, wanting to have something to give to charity collections, or chipping in for things with colleagues at work.

Jean coin pocket

In this case, that little pocket inside the pocket of your trousers is your friend here. You know the one I'm talking about, it's usually in every pair of jeans, although I also have a couple of pairs of suit trousers that have a similar thing. This allows you to keep a few coins that won't be jangling about, bulking out or damaging your wallet, but are still handy when you need them. If you have these pockets in your trousers, then this is the perfect solution for many.

Option 3: Keep coins in the car

If you are a driver, then you may find one of the only times you ever need coins is to pay for parking, yet you still carry them around all day, just because you've never really thought about it. If this sounds familiar, then why not just keep a little stash of coins somewhere in your car, for use in parking meters? This also means that if you've collected any coins from change when you're out and about, you can simply top up your stash with those when you get back to your car, rather than carrying them until you get home.

Be sure that you aren't leaving them on display though, that's just asking for trouble. A little collection of coins in a container or tucked away in a compartment somewhere may well eliminate the need for you to be carrying coins everywhere you go, just so you're not caught short when you need to park up.

Option 4: A coin friendly Wallet

Most slim wallets tend to focus on outright minimalism, so don't readily accommodate coins. However, there are a few notable exceptions to this rule. The Bellroy Note Sleeve is not exactly the slimmest wallet, but for a traditional bi-fold it's pretty decent, and has a small, covered, hidden pocket in the note section that can be used to store coins. You should be aware though that storing coins in a leather wallet is going to stretch and warp it considerably, meaning you will significantly reduce it's life span, not to mention it's style.

SECRID Cardslide coin storage

Another option is the SECRID Cardslide, which has a sliding compartment which can be used to store coins, and many other items. Because it is metal and plastic rather than leather, it is much more coin friendly, although you'll want to make sure you have some notes, or something else soft in there with your coins to avoid a slight rattling around.

Option 5: The Cavity Card

If none of the coin specific wallets on the market take your fancy, then worry no more. The Cavity Card is a nifty little invention that turns just about any wallet into a coin carrying wallet. It is a credit card sized frame that allows you to place coins, or any other small items such as a key, memory/SD/SIM card etc. and store them between the cards you already carry. It allows the storage of coins in just about any wallet without stretching or adding bulk. Originally invented by Leon, a reader of this very blog, it is the ultimate coin carrying solution.

Cavity Card Slim coin carrier

Coming in two sizes, the double or slim, the Cavity Card caters to what you need to carry. Though originally designed to fit the SECRID range, because it is about the size of a credit card, it will fit in almost any wallet than can store a few cards.  You can pick up a Cavity Card from our store from just £12 and turn any wallet into a coin carrying solution. Shop for the Cavity Card here.

Option 6: A separate coin case

If you're going for a minimalist wallet, it does seem slightly counter intuitive to also carry a separate case or wallet for coins, but it might make sense for some people. Some may want their main wallet to be very slim as they will keep it in their pocket for ready access, but also carry a bag that they are happy to store a coin case in. 

SLIM Titanium Wallet with Coin storage

A good example of this is from the ThirtyFiveMill blog, where he has paired up an everyday carry tube with a SolidDesign SLIM Titanium wallet, as shown above. If you're after a more traditional coin wallet, then British based Arkin Supply do some nice leather coin pouches.

There you have it, those are our ideas for dealing with coins whilst keeping your wallet and pocket clutter free. What do you make of it, convinced? Do you have another suggestion for the great coin debate? let us know your thoughts in the comments below.