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Keep Your Money Safe While Traveling – Credit Cards

Visa CardThere’s nothing worse than being in a foreign country and realizing that you became a victim of a pick-pocket. Unless they have gotten every bit of money and every credit card you have. That’s definitely worse…

This is the first in a series to help you know more about keeping your money safe while traveling nationally and internationally!

Credit Cards 

Certain credit cards are a travelers best friend. Discover and American Express are not accepted as widely as Visa and Mastercard. If you had to choose between traveling with Visa or Mastercard, they both have their perks. While Visa is accepted more than Mastercard, Mastercard has certain travel insurances built into the card. For instance, did you know that you may not have to buy insurance on your car rental when you use your Mastercard? However, be sure to check with your bank before relying on it entirely for you car rental insurance since a ton of credit card laws have recently changed.

When you are traveling with a credit card, be sure to take the proper precautions.

  • Know your daily preset spending limit for traveling. If you’re not used to having large transactions on your account and you decide to splurge on something abroad, you will probably encounter one of those embarrassing moments where you get to speak with a the credit card company as you’re trying to make a purchase. However, you’ll probably just get denied.  Just call your credit card company and make them aware that you might be a little swipe-happy for your trip.
  • If you are traveling internationally, be sure to let your credit card companies know where you are traveling. If the company notices that you’re from Ohio and there is a transaction in Lithuania, the credit card company will see that as a red flag that the purchases may be fraudulent.  Also,   If you let your credit card company know exactly where you are traveling, and how long you will be traveling, it will help your purchases go a little smoother.
  • Store a copy of your credit card number and the 1-800 24 hour customer service number in multiple places but please don’t write “CREDIT CARD INFORMATION” on it! I like to store one in the lining of my suitcase, one under the insole of a shoe, and one with my passport.  The one in the insole of my shoe saved me when my credit card was stolen from my wallet (and wallet returned!) in Prague. As soon as I saw that my card was gone, I took off my shoe and called the 1-800 number from the nearest phone. They didn’t even have a chance to use my card!  FYI: Prague is a hot-spot for some stealthy pick pocketers.
  • Also leave the same information with a trusted relative or friend at home who you can contact 24 hours a day. For me, I leave that information with my Mom because when I am traveling, she will answer the phone no  matter what hour it is.
  • If you feel that you would rather not travel with your everyday credit card, you can get a prepaid credit card at places such as Walmart. I haven’t used one of these abroad, so please be sure that you purchased a card that allows international transactions.

Stay tuned as we will be covering other ways to keep your money safe!

Please write a comment and let us know what do you do to keep your money safe while traveling!

About joytourandtravel

JOY TOUR and TRAVEL has been in operation since 1985. We are fully bonded and insured. We are specialists in many areas of travel. Our staff has traveled extensively to bring you first-hand knowledge of the world. It is our goal to provide quality travel experiences that are of exceptional value to our clients. We are an active member and Co-Owner of Travel Alliance Partners (TAP). This is your assurance that this agency meets the highest standards of financial stability. We have to meet certain criteria to be a member of TAP. TAP is 29 of North America's premier tour operators. We are also a member of (which allows us to get special discounts); the Greater Cincinnati BBB, Airlines Reporting Corporation (ARC) and International Airlines Travel Agent Network (IATAN), which allows us to book international, as well as domestic airline itineraries

6 comments on “Keep Your Money Safe While Traveling – Credit Cards

  1. thebrianhealy
    August 22, 2012

    Good tips on credit cards! American Express is hardly accepted anywhere in Europe – particularly Ireland where I am from. My best tip for money is using a trusted friend or family member to transfer money regularly via western union. There are a few charges but works out much the same as the credit cards.

  2. joytourandtravel
    August 22, 2012

    Seeing a Western Union sign when you’re running a little short is a fantastic feeling! Although the charges feel huge at the time, I agree that it works out. The only snafu that I have experienced is when I was in Amsterdam, as in the Capital of the Netherlands and our friend sent our money to Amsterdam, Germany… which I still can’t find on a map or Google. Happy traveling Brian!

  3. execflyer
    August 23, 2012

    I cant understand why anyone uses AMEX cards, they cause us lots of difficulty in our business. Very high charges, and hardly accepted anywhere. I find my visa or mastercard is a far better option when travelling or paying companies abroad! Used it to fuel aircraft several times without any problems.

  4. Glenn from
    December 14, 2012

    Brice Gosnell, regional publisher for Lonely Planet, purchased a pair of sunglasses with a bank card while traveling in Italy. When a thief nabbed the sunglasses, all Gosnell had to do was make a rapid phone call to his card business, and the money for the stolen sunglasses was refunded to his account.”Using a credit card is merely a smarter best bet,” Gosnell says. Pack a copy credit card.

    • joytourandtravel
      December 14, 2012

      I had no idea that credit card companies would take care of stolen items purchased with their credit card! I’d love to know which company provided that kind of service. 🙂

  5. Travel Credit Card Fan
    July 22, 2016

    I might also add to consider cards that will pay you more in rewards for your travel expenses and other expenses. You can use the reward calculator at
    CreditCardTuneUp. com to see which cards and sets of cards will pay you more in reward value for your travel expenses and regular monthly expenses.

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