Travelling is all about the miles you cover, the countries you explore, the time you invest and all the unanticipated obstacles you overcome, and not to mention the beautiful memories that you cherish the most. Once the travel bug gets the best of you, there is no way that you can avoid it. The world is a burgeoning adventure playground and it makes no sense resisting travel temptations. With that being said, you should always ask what are the things to keep in mind when it comes to travelling? A traveller’s joy knows no bounds when it comes to travelling in an unknown land and experiencing a different culture altogether. However, firstly, you need to consider opting for the best credit cards that can help fend off uncertain risks before you embark on your adventure.
Secondly, it is advised that you carry some amount of local currency in the form of cash during your travel. This way you can ensure that you have ample cash in hand for an uninterrupted travelling experience- taxi fares, cash-only restaurants, and merchants to name a few. Notwithstanding the importance of cash in hand, you should avoid carrying a large amount of cash while traveling abroad as it not only carries the evident risk of security but is also inconvenient to carry around. It always makes sense to keep one card or more in your wallet and use it whenever you make a transaction overseas. You should consider taking your pick from various types of credit cards that offer a plethora of benefits
Here’s how you can prioritise your preference list to ensure that you use your card with utmost ease while travelling:
Plan How Will You Use Your Credit Card
For international travellers, it makes more sense to carry at least two credit cards such as VISA and MasterCard. This step ensures that you have credit cards that support different payment networks to perform uninterrupted transactions in case if one of your card’s payment network service providers suffers an outage, you can always count on your another card.
You will also want to choose from one of the best credit cards that often charge around 1.5-4% as foreign transaction fees. These fees are charged taking the cost of purchases abroad into account.
Also, ensure that either of them has chip and pin capability. The reason is some payment kiosks, be it for parking or train ticket booking are compatible with chip-and-pin cards. From the reward points and air miles perspective, you can also choose from different types of credit cards offered by several UAE banks that come loaded with various rewards programme- bonus points, airlines miles, gift vouchers to name a few. Furthermore, you can do a cross-check with your card’s credit limit and expiration date to be on the safe side. With a little preparation and rational planning beforehand you can weed out travelling stress that is sure to occur if you are not well-prepared.
Point to Remember: Travellers should always make it a point to choose credit cards that are accepted around the globe. In general, Mastercard and VISA credit cards are accepted in more than two hundred countries with Discover and American Express slightly behind these brands in terms of usage.
Bank Should Be Informed About Travel Plans
If you have a notion that there’s no need to notify your bank of travel plans, then you are taking the wrong planning approach. It is always advised that you tell your card issuer about your travel schedule in advance. If somehow you could not contact your card issuer, chances are high that your issuer may consider it an act of theft or account stolen and might block it for the most evident reason that your unusual location creates suspicion in the mind of the issuer. Although your card issuer would be just a call away if your card has been blocked for suspicion of fraud, it will take some time to use your card again for further use.
Keep The Copies Of Relevant Documents
Travelers need to bring along photocopies of all relevant documents, passport, airline tickets, credit cards and other essential documents with them. The best would be to leave the original documents with a relative or friend in order to ensure the safety of those documents and keep at least 2-3 copies of your documents while travelling. That way, you can save yourself the trouble- if you ever lose your best credit cards-by getting these cancelled these right away. The major reasons cited for the cancellation of credit cards are mostly related to international trips. The last-minute hustle of travelling, moreover, sometimes makes travellers forget who the card is with, and they waste many hours trying to get through this crisis. That’s why the xerox copies always come in handy.
Stock Up On Some Cash
Travelers should always keep some cash in hand in the form of foreign currency as a backup. Not every place is compatible with plastic transactions. Taking this point into consideration, you should always carry a considerable amount of cash as per your needs.
Make The Most Of Your Card Services
Banks offer various types of credit cards to its customers. It all depends on whether an individual is looking for travel assistance or special discounts or both? Many credit cards come with global complementary benefits such as airport lounge access, the redemption of reward points on flights, hotel and rental car bookings, offline tie-ups with retail outlets, restaurants, and local stores and more. You just need to know the special features and benefits of your credit card because failing to use any of these benefits can result in you shelling out more on travel purchases than you could have if you know what credit card features would come in handy during offshore transactions.
Card Limits And Expiration Fees
As an alert credit card member, it is imperative that you give the basic credit card information a once-over before you make your travel plans. You can avoid last-minute scramble by looking at all aspects such as credit card limits, expiration dates, foreign transaction fees, etc. For example, financial implications arising out of exhausted credit limit or transacting through expired card can be avoided. If you haven’t used credit cards earlier, refer to online credit card comparison sites and browse through some of the best credit cards available.
Consider Buying Travel Money Belts
Consider yourself a stranger in a strange land and be extra scrupulous when it comes to the safety of your credit cards and cash. Be wary of taking rides and tours at overcrowded sites in popular tourist destinations, and ensure that you have a money belt with a concealed pouch to store your cash.
Avoid Late Fees
You should always make it a point to pay your credit card bills in time to avoid late fees. If your vacation lasts more than a week, ensure that you have already paid previous bills because substantial interest will accrue on the unpaid bill amount and you certainly don’t want that instant late fees to trigger when you miss a card payment deadline.
Point to Remember: keep in mind that you are not charged for the same product or services twice during offshore transactions. Suppose you did hotel bookings with your credit card, but then found it more viable to pay in cash. In that case, you should be more careful and check whether or not you are double -billed. If yes, then make it a point to keep those cash receipts as a proof of payment. Double billing can happen for sure, so you need to watch out!
Refrain From Using A Credit Card For Cash
Swiping your best credit card at a cash machine will invite a cash advance fees with a high-interest rate. Experts usually suggest that travellers should avoid cash advances whenever it is possible, especially if they do not like the idea of paying transaction fee as a percentage of the cash advance.
In a Nutshell
With these handy tips and a bit of planning, you can focus only on things you love to do and make your vacation as fun as can be. These tips are mostly about making the right use of your card while traveling without focusing on unnecessary, hard-to-find details. If you keep abreast of necessary information related to travelling, you know that it’s more than easy to enjoy a vacation without jeopardising your credit score.