Frequent Travel Money Mistakes
It is summer time and you are probably planning your holiday. Travelling abroad? There are so many things to consider such as where do you want to go or how much do you want to risk? Risk! Yes of course, there is risk involved in travel, financial risk to be more precise. There are so many things which can go wrong unless you plan your holiday trip and account for all the things which can go wrong financially. But no need to worry, in this article we will cover some of the most common money mistakes people make while travelling and how to avoid them.
Credit Card Issues
The most frequent issue faced by travelers is related to their credit cards. Traveler cheques have become obsolete and most travelers carry their credit cards as they are much easier to carry than cash. For one, there is a limit for carrying cash while travelling and secondly there is always the risk of either losing your cash in some unfortunate manner or running out of it. Most travelers experience the latter and thus it is convenient to carry credit cards, but it isn`t that simple.
Make sure you inform your bank about your travel plans before hand. Most, if not all cards have foreign transactions blocked by default. You should ask your bank to keep the card open for international transactions otherwise the moment you use your card for any transaction, the card will get blocked automatically and you will end up calling your bank, which brings us to the second most important point to consider before travelling.
Switch your phone plan
Make sure to find out international roaming charges with your service provider beforehand. See if it is feasible to use your phone on roaming for the duration of your stay. If international roaming is not available or too expensive, then it is better to use other options. Payphones are quite useful but are growing obsolete and they charge a handful for international calls.
Suppose you forgot to ask your bank to keep your credit card open for international transactions. The moment you used your card to buy something during your stay, the card will be deactivated. No problem right, you can just call your bank and ask them to activate the card. So you go over to a pay phone to call your bank, the automated response begins and just when the bank representative is about to answer, the call drops because the pay phone ran out of credit. You are going to end up feeding the pay phone a handful just to get your card activated.
So it is better to either buy a prepaid phone or use a local service provider, to stay connected back home without wasting a lot of money.
Forgetting the utility bills and debts back home
Amid the excitement of holiday and adventure ahead, it is natural to forget about some of the financial obligations which are not yet due. If you will be travelling abroad for a considerable amount of time then it will be wise to take care of utility bills and any debt repayments which may become due while you are on holiday otherwise you run the risk of incurring penalties and late payment surcharge. There is no point to pay penalties for late payment when you can avoid them. You can ask your bank to pay the bills and other payments automatically through direct transfer facility when they become due or you can pay them over the internet, this however is a more risky option. If you chose to pay your bills over the internet then make sure that you do not use public wifi spots as hackers may easier steal your financial data and identity. As a rule, always use a secure private connection for financial transactions at home or abroad.
Check the exchange rates
It is wise to check the exchange rate of the currency which you will be using. Exchange rates tend to fluctuate and so the rates may change during your travels. Every airport has money exchange booths but sometimes they charge a little extra because the travelers who arrive have no other choice but to use their services. It is better to get the currency exchanged in your home country or look for vendors outside the airport, which may not be so practical. Many atm`s also perform this function but do check up on the processing charges being charged by the bank whose atm you intend to use.
Try to keep these points in mind while travelling and you won`t have to worry about your finances.