Banking Solutions for Travellers

by Kristina on September 23, 2010 · 1 comment

plane in sunset

Summer is now over, and this means that our summer vacations are also over. We want to hear about your summer adventures DINKS. Where Did You Go? How Much Did You Spend? And most importantly…How did you spend your money?

In 2010, the days of travelling with Amex travellers cheques are over.  We now have so many different travel banking solutions available for our travels to South America, Europe, Asia, and Africa.

When you travelled this summer did you use your credit or debit card?

Credit Cards are a widely accepted payment method.  We can use our credit cards almost anywhere in the world, and they come equipped with several different insurance options and services for travellers.  Depending on the type of credit card we own, we may have additional travel benefits such as insurance in case of flight delay or cancellation, as well as lost luggage insurance, and in some cases medical insurance.  VISA and MasterCard also offer a wide range of travel assistance services such as lost and stolen card services, emergency cash advances, as well as 24 hour customer service.

Both the VISA and MasterCard websites also offer travelling tips for cardholders, as well as security precautions.  Whenever a cardholder is planning to travel it is best to contact your financial institution prior to departure, and advise them of your travel dates along with your contact information abroad.  This ensures that your credit card will not be flagged by the security department due to spending outside of your normal pattern/habits and geographic location.

MasterCard is accepted anywhere in the world where we see the Cirrus Symbol and VISA is accepted anywhere with the PLUS system symbol.  Locations include branches of foreign banks, ABMs (Automated Banking Machines), and POS (Point of Sale) Terminals.  For a list of locations where MasterCard and VISA are accepted please visit their websites.  To find foreign branches of your financial institution, please visit your financial institutions homepage.

Our friend Jay went to Poland.  Where did you travel this summer?

Of course convenience comes with a price. We can use our credit cards and debit cards abroad; however we will be charged a foreign transaction fee.  This can range from a flat debit card fee of $5 per transaction or it could be a percentage of the total transaction amount such as 2.5%. Transaction fees and Foreign Exchange rates are based on the VISA or MasterCard exchange rate on the day of the transaction.  To avoid any surprises, it is best to inquire about these fees at your financial institution prior to your departure date.

Debit cards are also a widely accepted form of payment for purchases and cash advances worldwide.  Our debit cards can be used wherever we see the Interac or PLUS system symbol.   It is very important that we choose a 4 digit personal identification number (PIN) for our debit cards when travelling abroad.  Many ABMs (Automated Banking Machines) and Point of Sale Terminals (POS) in Europe and South America require only a 4 digit pin be used.

(Photo By Kossy)

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 ken September 23, 2010 at 4:14 pm

Need to have a card that has the smart chip for pins.

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