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Travelers Should Prepare In Advance For Credit Card Issues

Many consumers who take a European vacation or have children studying abroad may experience at least one issue with their credit cards. For example, many of the magnetic swipe U.S. credit cards are not compatible with the chip and pin systems that process transactions overseas.

Additionally, some lenders who see foreign transactions being made on a customer's credit card may suspect fraud and cut the card off, rendering it useless.

However, individuals can avoid these problems by planning in advance. For example, consumers who go abroad should alert their credit card issuer that they will be traveling, which will prevent fraud alerts, according to The Wall Street Journal. Additionally, consumers should also carry cash in the event their magnetic-strip credit cards do not work in establishments overseas.

Carrying cash can also be an effective way to avoid heavy foreign transaction fees charged by many lenders, which can be as high as 3 percent. Consumers may save more money by making small purchases with cash, such as food, souvenirs and clothing, and leaving expenses like hotel and travel reservations for their credit cards.
 

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