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We all know the drill.
You drive to your destination, look down and realize you have something you don’t want to take into the place you are going.
So you need to hide it.
But where in your car do your hide your valuables?
In this post, I’ll walk you through 21 best places to hide your money and valuable items.
By the end, you will know some smart areas of your car where you can put things out of view and lower your chances of having them stolen.
Table of Contents
21 Best Places To Hide Money In Your Car
In order to know the best places to hide money in your car, you first have to ask yourself a question.
Are you looking for a quick, temporary solution or a longer term one?
What I mean by this is, most car break-ins are a crime of opportunity.
The bad guys see something of value in your car and breaks in to get it.
If they don’t see anything valuable, they most likely won’t break in.
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A longer term solution is for those people who are truly looking to hide money.
This could be because you are trying to keep it a secret from a snooping spouse, or maybe you are doing something illegal to earn some cash and want to keep it hidden.
The good news is this post has solutions for both situations.
You just have to choose which idea or ideas are the best for you.
#1. Your Visor
This is one of the simplest ways of all.
If you have a small amount of cash, simply flip down your visor, place the cash on it and flip it back up.
No one who looks in your car window will see it or suspect money is there.
However, if your car is broken into, odds are this is one of the first places the person will look.
So while it does its job of moving the money out of plain sight, it still could be stolen.
#2. Center Console
Another easy place to put your money is your center console.
Again, it moves the money out of view, but like with your visor, this is going to be one of the obvious places the person looks.
If you are just running into a restaurant to pick up your pizza, you should be fine.
But if you are shopping for hours, you might want to pick another location in your car.
#3. Under Your Floor Mats
This idea is a better solution than the ones previously mentioned.
Not only does it keep your money from being seen, most criminals aren’t going to lift up floor mats to look for money.
They are going to go to the more common hiding places first.
The only downside to this option is you can’t keep large amounts of cash under the floor mat as it won’t lie flat.
#4. Glove Box
While your glove compartment will hide money or valuable items, they are common spots that thieves will look should they break into your car.
In fact, your glove box, the center console, and your sun visors are the three places they will look first.
So if you are worried about having money stolen from your car, you are best served picking other ideas.
#5. Empty Coffee Cup
This is one of the most creative ways to hide money in your car.
Get a coffee from your local convenience store or fast food restaurant, and wash out the paper cup.
Once dry, you can put money in it, put the lid back on, and then place it in a cup holder in your car.
Anyone looking in will simply think you have a cup of coffee and not money in the cup.
The catch here is if they do break in, there is a chance they will find the money.
This is especially true if you put loose change into the cup, as any movement will give away your secret.
If you really want to make this a good hiding spot, fold the cash in half twice and then put it into a small Ziploc bag.
Put it in the coffee cup and then fill the cup with coffee.
This way, if moved, the thief will simply think it’s full of coffee.
#6. Seat Pockets
Most cars have multiple seat pockets nowadays.
Usually the front seats have pockets on the back so rear passengers have a place to store items.
Some cars have seat pockets up front for passengers as well.
These can be great temporary places to put your valuables when you run into a store.
The only downside is some cars have these pockets made of mesh material, which would defeat the purpose of trying to hide something.
Your trunk is a great place to put money and valuables as well.
They will definitely be out of sight.
And with most cars, there are panels that line the trunk walls.
These are kept in place with little black clips that you can easily pull out.
Simply place your money behind these panels and no one will ever know there is money there.
#8. Spare Tire
Sticking to your trunk, lift up your trunk liner to find your spare tire.
Most cars have a lot of Styrofoam surrounding the spare tire to secure the tools you need if you need to change a tire.
You have a couple of options here.
You can simply put your money on this Styrofoam to hide it.
Or you can get a knife and cut a secret compartment in it.
Place your cash or valuables in there and cover it back up.
#9. Diversion Safe
One of the best hiding places is to use diversion safes.
Companies are really outdoing themselves with diversion safes these days.
You can find all sorts of items for your house if you are looking to hide money there.
And this trend continues for your car.
My favorite is this fake can of tire foam.
Keep this filled with cash in your trunk and most people will simply think it is there from the last time you washed your car.
You can buy this on Amazon.
#10. Fake Cigarette Lighter
Another option if your car still has a cigarette lighter is to replace the cap to it with a fake one.
This fake cap holds your money.
Simply put the money in, then push it into the receptacle and no one is the wiser.
#11. Under Your Seat
Another fast and simple idea is to put the money under your seat.
It gets it out of sight and depending on how well you hide it here, it could be a long term solution.
The trick is securing it.
First, many cars have air vents under the seats to move air around the vehicle, so you have to avoid this.
Second, since your car moves, any sudden movements could have the items slide out from under the seats.
To solve these, take a few minutes by looking under your seats to see what it looks like.
You might be able to get some duct tape and put the items in an envelope and tape that to the underside of the seat.
#12. Fuse Box
Most cars have two fuse boxes.
One is under the hood and the other one is under the dash on the passenger side.
Either is a sneaky hiding place to put some cash.
You don’t risk losing it since the fuse box has a cover that clips on.
The only catch is you might want to put the cash in a Ziploc baggie if you use the fuse box under your hood.
While the chances are slim that it would ever get wet, you never know.
Also, know that your mechanic might end up in your fuse box at some point, and will be surprised to find cash in there.
#13. Under The Beverage Holder
I really like the outside the box thinking with this tip.
Go to your beverage holder and see if you can remove the rubber insert.
Most cars allow for this because people spill their favorite drinks all the time.
By allowing you to remove the rubber insert, you can clean it more easily.
Before you put it back, you can put some money in first.
The only problem here is you can’t put a lot of money as the insert won’t fit properly if you do.
But it is a good place if you have a credit card or two you want to leave in your car.
#14. Inside Hood Insulation
A great long term idea is to hide the money inside the insulation under your hood.
Lift up your hood and you will see insulation on the underside.
You should be able to peel back a small section and slide an envelope of cash in there.
While it will get warm, your cash won’t catch on fire.
The downside here is if you get into a car accident and the front end of your car is damaged.
You could end up with destroyed money or money all over the accident scene.
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#15. Fake Compartment Under Your Hood
Staying under your hood, most modern cars have a lot of plastic covering the engine bay.
You can either create a fake compartment that looks like it belongs, or find a current area to put your money into.
As with the idea of your fuse box, know that when you take your car in for service, there is a chance your mechanic will find the money.
Also, the same problem could arise in an accident as well.
#16. Magnetic Key Holder
Do you know those magnetic key holders people use to hide a spare key to their house?
Repurpose it to hide things in your car.
Your car has plenty of metal for it to adhere to.
The only caution I would give is to be careful when using it outside your car.
You wouldn’t want it to somehow come off as you are driving and lose the item you are trying to hide.
#17. In A Seat Cushion
Another good way to put things out of sight is to place them in a seat cushion.
Depending on the type of vehicle you drive, this could work a couple of ways.
If you have a sedan, you should be able to lift the rear seat off and simply place valuables there.
Or if your rear seat folds down for access to the trunk, see if you can put the item between the seat back and the fabric.
Another option is to try to use the arm rest as a hiding spot.
If you have captain’s chairs, feel the underside of the seat cushion and see if you can pull the fabric up some to hide things there.
This won’t work too well if you have leather seating however.
#18. Air Vents
While you don’t want to block all your air vents, if you have a small amount of money, you can pop off one of the air vent covers and place some money in there.
The money will never be found as this is a safe place no one would think to look for money.
You could even simply close that vent too so if someone were looking around, they wouldn’t spot it by chance.
#19. Secret Compartment
Most cars have a hidden compartment somewhere up front where you can store small items.
In one car I drove, there was a small change drawer on the left side of the dash.
While these areas aren’t great for long term storage as a thief will look in these spots, they are good as temporary hiding spots.
#20. Underside Of Dashboard
I personally love this tip because most people won’t think to look here.
Get an envelope and duct tape it to the underside of the dash, above where your feet go.
While you could use the driver’s side, the area in front of the passenger seat is a better choice because you have more room to work with.
To make this hiding place more secure, you should first inspect the area.
Where is the optimal place to put the item and what color is the area you want to use?
If it is black, then take the extra step of painting the envelope black and use black duct tape.
In the event someone rummages through your car, there is very little chance they will ever see the envelope.
#21. Search For Your Perfect Hiding Place
The final tip is for you to do some detective work on your end.
Take 20 minutes and search your vehicle.
See what you can find where you can hide things easily.
For example, we drive a minivan with an onboard vacuum.
This compartment is a great place to hide valuables.
If you drive an older car, you might have the stereo that has a storage tray above or beneath it.
With a little work, you can turn this into a great hiding place.
What Never To Do When Hiding Money In Your Vehicle
If you are going to hide cash or valuables in your car, don’t make the mistake of hiding them when you are at your destination or in the parking lot.
There is too big a chance of someone looking to steal being there and scoping out the area.
They might see you putting your money in your sun visor or opening the trunk of your car.
Think of it this way.
When at the shopping mall, you should never stop mid trip to put the bags in your car and go back shopping.
People will hang out in the parking lot waiting for this and when you do this, you bring unwanted attention on you.
After you leave, your car becomes an easy target because they know they will score if they break in.
This is the same idea with hiding valuables in your car.
If you let people see you do it, no matter how good of a hiding spot you choose, chances are you might become a victim.
Instead, hide the item beforehand.
There are 21 great places to hide money in your car.
Some are great short term solutions while others are good for the long term.
And some are good in both instances.
The key is to pick the best places for your situation and of course, remember where you put the items if you plan to hide something for a long time.
While these tips won’t eliminate your chances of becoming a victim of theft, they will lower your odds.
Of course, make sure you always lock your car doors as well.
This simple step will deter a handful of criminals alone.
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I have over 15 years experience in the financial services industry and 20 years investing in the stock market. I have both my undergrad and graduate degrees in Finance, and am FINRA Series 65 licensed and have a Certificate in Financial Planning.
Visit my About Me page to learn more about me and why I am your trusted personal finance expert.