Magazine article The Exceptional Parent

Using Credit Cards Overseas

Magazine article The Exceptional Parent

Using Credit Cards Overseas

Article excerpt

Using a credit card can be the safest and most effective way of carrying currency and buying things "on the economy" when stationed overseas. Banks now take extra precautions to avoid credit card fraud, so a sudden change in your charging patterns could cause the card issuer to flag your account or suspend transactions until they can be verified. To avoid that inconvenience and make sure your card is honored overseas, know how to use your credit cards wisely during your assignment.

* Credit is safest. You might think that an ATM card is the way to go, but thanks to added security measures such as purchase protection, credit cards are much safer. Most of the time you can use your credit card in an ATM if you need to, but charging purchases instead will save you money. If you can be disciplined with your record keeping and plan in advance, taking your credit card abroad will allow you to spend safely and without any hassles.

* Pick a universal card. Make sure your card will work in your "theater of operations." Stick to widely accepted credit types like Visa and MasterCard.

* Notify your issuer. If you are going somewhere out of your regular routine, notify your card issuer before you go. If your card company sees your card being used in places you don't normally go, they might suspend your account. Although this is something that you can normally resolve quickly, you'll save yourself the trouble if you just let your card issuer know before you go away that you'll be using your card abroad. …

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