So you’re traveling! New adventures and new places await… but there’s some things to consider before you pack the bags and fly the coop. Here’s a few tips for dealing with credit cards, debit cards, and all things banking when hitting the road.
- “Hey bank? I’m traveling.” It’s important to inform your bank of your travel dates. This prepares them for any foreign transactions that may pop up on your account.
- You used to call me on the cell phone… And you still can! Or at least, you should. Be sure your current phone numbers are on file with the bank!
- Plan A. Plan B. Plan C. It’s a good idea to bring multiple forms of payment when traveling. Being prepared to use a combination of cash, credit, debit or prepaid cards is a smart strategy for any type of travel.
- Quick! What’s your PIN? Make sure you know your PIN. If you have forgotten – be sure to set one you will remember before you begin your travel. Need help with a PIN Change? Call 877.865.1680
- How much is too much? Understand your daily purchase and cash withdrawal limits. The typical daily withdrawal limits are $500 daily for cash and $2,000 for point-of-sale purchases. Foreign currency exchange fees may apply.
- App it up. Use Mobile Banking to review account balances and activity while traveling. Enroll before you go at choicefinancialgroup.com/enroll.
- Keep it secret, keep it safe. It’s always good to be cautious with your payment information when traveling (and, in general.) Avoid public computers when checking your banking information. Keep your eye on your credit/debit card. Don’t let anyone “take it out of your sight.”
- Don’t be late for the date. Avoid missed or late payments with Bill Pay! This is a way to set up automatic payments, so you don’t have to worry about it when you’re nappin’ on the beach. Learn more about it.
- Protect your PIN. The best way to protect your PIN is to memorize it and never write it down. Never store your PIN with your debit card. If you have trouble remembering your PIN and need to store it somewhere, one trick is to create a fake contact in your phone and store the information in that contact.
- Credit not debit. A credit card is more secure than using a debit card when traveling. Credit cards aren’t linked to your checking account, so there is no risk of fraudsters accessing your funds. However, withdrawing money with a credit card can be pricey. That said… (See #11)
- Get cash before you go. Transaction fees can be steep, depending on where you are trying to withdraw money. If you are traveling out of the country it is best to pre-order currency from your bank, or get it at your local airport, so you have cash on hand for your trip. And if you are withdrawing money abroad, remember that it’s best to get more at once so you are not charged a fee multiple times.
- Have a heck of a good time. Of course most importantly, getting these things in line beforehand gives you the freedom to have a stress-free, absolutely phenomenal trip! Make sure to soak it all in and bring back great stories to share.