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Travel Budget, Money Matters, Financial Talk Mom, can I borrow ten grand?! Gimme yo mastercard! How the heck can I pay for my trip?! Ideas for making money. How much dough do I need?

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Old 03-17-2004, 02:15 PM   #1
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Quick question, I was looking into travelers checks and the Amex web site has an ad for a "travel funds card." basically its travelers checks on a pre paid card. I already have a prepaid master card which I intend to put 1K to 1,500 on, and then I am considering putting 750-1000 Euros on this amex card (and then i'll 500 in cash, for about 3k total for my 2 months). Question is has anyone used or heard about the Amex travel funds card? Also in Europe are Amex ATMS readily availabe, i know MC is...I can not get an unsecured credit card, 'cuz uh, well my credit is shit. Is this a good option? Thanks for any help
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Old 03-18-2004, 04:47 AM   #2
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CC,
ATM's Are everywhere in Europe! I never had an Amex . I got by just fine with Visa, MC, and ATM cards with the Visa or MC logo.

Householdbank.com, among others, is known to give credit cards out to people with "less than perfect credit."

And...

As far as fixing up your credit. I've got several friends that have gone to the big 3 credit bureaus websites-

Experian, Equifax, and Transunion (not linked intentionally see below</span>)

Here's the low down. You pay for your credit report online $9-$12 each (thirty-something for all three), then you can see everything that each bureau has listed for you.
You will see duplicates, old accounts, collections, whatever...

Now, it is your right to dispute any and every item on your credit report with each bureau. Click on dispute (usually next to the item), choose an option "never been late," "paid in full," "not my account"...whatever....Dispute any and all items that you want removed.


The credit bureaus will send those specific companies that you have disputed, letters in regards to your claim. <span style=\'color:red\'>If the creditors, companies, etc...don't respond within 30days, it will be removed from your credit report...ultimately raising your scores!
(even if you were in default, if you say "never late," they'll still have a hard time proving it or just won't waste their time responding to your claim ) And if the companies respond, then dispute it again- month after month! I've heard that after 6 or 7 times of them responding, they just kind of give up at some point

I work with 3 people right now that have seen their reports cleaned up. 2 other friends did the same thing and have excellent credit now .
This can be a lengthy process as the bureaus give every company 30 days to respond, so you have to stay on top of it.
In the old days, you had to send out letters, but not you can do it online- easy!

Look, if you act fast, by the summer time you should see great results, and you can apply for unsecured gold cards !

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Old 03-18-2004, 04:53 PM   #3
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thats some good info. TP.

sounds like a good way to clear up a bad credit score. It makes sense that some companies will not even bother to respond for small minor complaint like that.

great inside stuff TP!
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Old 03-19-2004, 01:51 PM   #4
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thanx TP, but to clean my situation i might have to go the ole' BR route. I had a car that dropped it's transmission twice in one years time. The second time they asked for 4K to fix, while I still owed 7K on the car. I said F that and told them to take it away. The car was 1300 miles over warrenty the first time the trany went and ford would not help me, and also since it was from a dealership i could not apply lemon laws. Basically i got screwed and they eventually put a 10K judgement out on me....Now I'll tell you this, Ford will have to pry that money from my cold dead hands before they get it, thus BR is the option...Ah well..>Thanx for the advice though man....Can't wait to get away from it all Why this trip is perfect timming for me
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Old 06-08-2004, 10:50 AM   #5
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On my last trip to OZ, I took one of those AMEX traveler's cheque cards, just for a test run. I figured that hey, its less to carry around than some paper traveler's cheques. I can honestly say that I had more problems with that little pre-paid card than using my debit and credit cards. Some places will accept paper traveler's cheques, but not AMEX cards. And a few places that accepted the AMEX card, their machine wouldn't pick up the AMEX traveler's cheque card.

Plus if you accidentally go over on what is pre-paid on the card, they charge you a fee. Plus taking money out of ATM machines (which seemed cool when I purchased the card) costs something like $5 if you request a receipt. Plus not that many ATMs will accept AMEX cards. And you cannot reserve rental cars or some hotels/hostels with it because it is not a real credit card. Seems like a pain, huh?

My advice is to stick with the paper cheques and/or your regular debit/credit cards. The credit companies will typically replace the $$ if lost of stolen. Call them before you leave and see what their policies are in such situations.

Happy travels. Hope this helped.
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Old 06-08-2004, 11:08 AM   #6
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An ATM card is definitely the way to go, IMHO. As previously stated, notify your bank that you're going overseas, what countries you're going to, the dates, etc. - they'll give you an international number you can call in case you run into trouble, and it'll keep the card from freezing up overseas.

Sure, you can use the Amex card/check to get money from Amex offices and machines all over Europe, but you'll get a crappy exchange rate, and it seems the pickpockets seem to target these locations, at that!

If you do use any ATM/Debit/credit cards, though, be certain to keep or shred all your receipts. I noticed that the slips there don't cover up parts of your account number, and I had my credit card # jacked TWICE! The banks took care of it, but the unpleasant surprise and ensuing hassle can be avoided by taking the time to take care of your receipts.

(And yeah, I have credit cards because I took all the steps TP outlined above, to great success!)
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