The following is a guest post
Whether you are traveling for business or pleasure, credit cards can be a major benefit. Even if you only travel once or twice a year it is important to have plastic you can use for a variety of reasons, such as the safety of personal information as well as convenience. Consider the following tips so you can travel wisely with credit cards:
Call your provider ahead of time
The last thing you want to have happen is your credit card being frozen when you are on vacation. To prevent such a situation, you will want to inform your provider that you will be traveling before you leave. Without completing this step, your bank may believe that your identity has been stolen and place a freeze on your account, which means you won’t be able to use the card for the rest of your trip.
Become aware of any fees
When traveling out of the country, your provider may charge you a foreign transaction fee for every swipe – generally around 3 percent of each transaction. While that may seem like a small amount, it can add up over time so it is important to be aware of what you will be charged.
The best plan of attack may be to secure a credit card that doesn’t charge a foreign transaction fee, such as the Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card. You can also take advantage of the great travel rewards, which include 1.25 miles for every dollar spent that can be used on future travel expenses.
Always carry a back up card
Just because you have a credit card that offers great perks, doesn’t mean it is the only one you should bring with you on vacation or business travel. You never know what could happen, so you should be sure that you always have at least one backup credit card. However, you may want to leave your backup locked in the safe of your hotel room, as it will do you no good if your wallet is stolen. A backup card is also protection against frozen accounts.
Don’t rely solely on credit cards
Yes, credit cards can offer you many benefits when traveling. But, that doesn’t mean that you should only bring plastic. For instance, you might want to consider carrying a small amount of cash just in case you encounter a merchant that doesn’t accept plastic. If your card is lost or stolen, having some cash in your wallet and in your hotel room safe can ensure that you have a means of payment while contacting your credit card company to solve your problem.
Make sure you have access to your account online: Only bring cards that you can access on the Internet. If a card is lost or stolen, or you run into any other issues, being able to reach your account from a computer or your smartphone can be beneficial. This is especially important when traveling overseas, as your online banking portal is much easier to use than a toll-free 800 number.