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Old 07-17-2006, 11:54 PM   #1
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so i feel dumb right now i'm getting ready to leave in two months i've got my ticket flying with united ( don't know if it's a great one to fly but it was direct). got my hostel. got my pack and packed it once already and walked about taste of chicago with it to see if i could stand it for the day. now fo my dumb question. i only want to bring one of my credit cards.... what one is best?
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Old 07-18-2006, 12:17 AM   #2
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Hmm, that is a bit of a tough call - some places only accept MC, some only Visa and some only take European cards. I use a MC most places, though I do have a Visa for the odd place that doesn't take MC - most places you'd be likely to encounter, if they accept credit cards at all, would probably accept either. (The place I can't use mine is a Home Depot type place, hopefully you won't be needing faucets and hosepipe on your travels.)

If you have a card that you could use as a bank card (to take money out at ATMs), I would choose that one - you'll probably need cash more often than a CC. In that case, make sure your card works with the CIRRUS and PLUS systems, as those are pretty widespread in Europe. There will be bank machines you can't use, but in any biggish place you should be able to find one that you can!

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Old 07-18-2006, 09:08 AM   #3
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I believe that Visa has slightly more coverage than Mastercard, but it is a narrow margin and most (but not all) places that take Visa will take MC. These are definately much better to take than Amex, Diners, Discover, etc. If you have a Visa, that is the best one to take. If you also have a debit card with Visa symbol, that is also a good option. You should probably bring both.

Actually, why do you only want to bring one CC? I would recommend two in case you have issues with one. Sometimes your bank will shut it off when they see a lot of international activity or maybe the magnetic strip goes bad, etc. and so its good to have a backup. It's usually easy to clear up issues like this, but sometimes it takes awhile. That is also why you want to call all your banks ahead of time to tell them you will be using CCs over seas and to put a note on your account to that effect so they do not shut them off due to suspicions of fraud. Good luck.
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Old 07-19-2006, 10:43 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally posted by LiveFreeorDie@Jul 18 2006, 11:08 AM
I believe that Visa has slightly more coverage than Mastercard, but it is a narrow margin and most (but not all) places that take Visa will take MC.* These are definately much better to take than Amex, Diners, Discover, etc.* If you have a Visa, that is the best one to take.* If you also have a debit card with Visa symbol, that is also a good option.* You should probably bring both.*

Actually, why do you only want to bring one CC?* I would recommend two in case you have issues with one.* Sometimes your bank will shut it off when they see a lot of international activity or maybe the magnetic strip goes bad, etc. and so its good to have a backup.* It's usually easy to clear up issues like this, but sometimes it takes awhile. That is also why you want to call all your banks ahead of time to tell them you will be using CCs over seas and to put a note on your account to that effect so they do not shut them off due to suspicions of fraud.* Good luck.
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thanks for the tip i'm taking my visa/debit card but want to take a credit card too... was worried about taking my amex(has the highest limit).....but i guess i'll take my mastercard...
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Old 07-19-2006, 11:04 PM   #5
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Sounds like a good plan to take a debit card too, just to have a back up option. AMEX is great for the people who stay in the fancy hotels in the ads, but MC is a better choice for budget travelers, many places DON'T take AMEX.

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