Summer Travel Safety Tips
With the summer travel season underway, it’s time to start packing your bags and wallet to make sure you’re ready for that exciting trip. Whether you will be taking a family vacation to an exotic island or traveling east to visit friends, it’s important to understand how to travel with a credit card.
Here are five steps to financially prepare you for your next trip:
- Do Your Research About Cash
If you’re traveling internationally, make sure you know which currency that country uses. However, be careful. Even though many international restaurants or shops will accept U.S. currency, you may pay more using U.S. dollars in most cases.
- Talk to Your Card Provider
Talking to your provider is an essential action that shouldn’t be overlooked. After just a few hours or purchases in a foreign location, your credit or debit card can be declined for irregular or non-patterned activity. The last thing you want to deal with on vacation is having your credit card declined, so make sure you call your bank or credit union well in advance before traveling.
- Have a Backup Plan
Like anything else, it’s always better to have a backup plan. Just in case your card is declined, carry a backup credit card. It’s much easier to have a second card with you than to fumble in your wallet and frantically search for enough cash to cover a purchase you expected to be charged to your credit card.
- Watch Out for ATMs
Unless you are using an ATM to withdraw cash using your debit card, stay away from ATMs as much as you can. ATMs are the easiest way for criminals and hackers to steal your identity. Using ATMs that have security cameras surrounding it are also safer because hackers and thieves are less likely to steal your account information if there is a camera capturing every detail.
- Keep Your Guard Up
Even though it’s vacation and it’s time to relax, don’t let your guard down. Financially speaking, you are most vulnerable when you are traveling. It’s not unheard of for a waiter to take a picture of your credit card or for a thief to target ATMs. These are real, credible threats. Stated simply, just be careful. Monitor your accounts, and keep an eye out for any suspicious activity.
My name is Megan Hammond, and I am an aspiring writer, blogger, and entrepreneur. As a senior in high school, I am involved in a wide array of activities ranging from the National Honor Society to Campus Ministry to the figure skating team.
When I am not in the classroom, I am likely working. My passion for figure skating transcends beyond my personal goals, and I enjoy teaching figure skating at USA Hockey Arena.
During my free time, I am typically reading or writing. I am passionate about English and Spanish, and I spend my free time trying to improve my skills in these areas. When I’m not reading or writing, I am usually working on new graphic design projects in Photoshop. I hope that I can put all of these skills to use as I pursue a career in marketing.
Photo Credit: Mahdi Gransberry