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Article on using your cc in foreign countries

Laurie

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Thanks for posting this - interesting.

I can vouch for the fact that the Capital One cc didn't work anywhere we went in Denmark in 2006. Thank heavens we had a second alternative, which was a debit card. I had no idea this was changing elsewhere...

I wonder whether cc's that specialize in travel (like Cap One Miles One) will address this anytime soon?

My advice would be to always have a few payment alternatives - including a debit card that allows you to make transfers into your account online, if you like to keep a modest balance. (Then you only have to worry about online security.)
 

Carolinian

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I have run into that huge nuisance in the Netherlands, and was told there that if I got my US credit card company to assign a PIN to the card, I could use it in Europe. The machines there did not say ''card not valid'', they said ''enter your PIN''.

Fortunately, eastern Europe hasn't gone in for this nonsense yet.
 

Carol C

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If Cap One cards are not accepted in some places in Europe, could it be because it's a MasterCard and not Visa? (At least the one I have is MC, not Visa...so I'm assuming that Cap One only issues MC cards?)
 

Carolinian

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If Cap One cards are not accepted in some places in Europe, could it be because it's a MasterCard and not Visa? (At least the one I have is MC, not Visa...so I'm assuming that Cap One only issues MC cards?)

My Cap One is a Visa, and it is all I use over here. At least in eastern Europe there is no need for a PIN yet, but I suppose I ought to ask for one since I will be in Germany and France in November.
 

Laurie

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Mine's also a Visa, and the issue in Denmark was definitely no PIN. Guess we Cap One card holders should call their cust svc depts and request PIN's before our next jaunt to the countries in question - if this is all it will take ... Carol, I don't know whether you've got time for that, they probably have to mail it to you.
 

scotlass

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We were in Ireland and Scotland in July 2008 and had no problems with either our Capital One card or American Express (for car rental). Our Capital One is a mastercard. The beauty of it is that there is no foreign transaction fee.
 

Carolinian

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We were in Ireland and Scotland in July 2008 and had no problems with either our Capital One card or American Express (for car rental). Our Capital One is a mastercard. The beauty of it is that there is no foreign transaction fee.

That is also why Cap One is the only card I use on this side of the pond.
 

Carol C

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We were in Ireland and Scotland in July 2008 and had no problems with either our Capital One card or American Express (for car rental). Our Capital One is a mastercard. The beauty of it is that there is no foreign transaction fee.

Did you need a pin # to use it? :wave:
 

Judith Frye

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In Scotland this past August I used both a Starwood American Express and a Hilton HHonors Visa card. When I figured out why my cards wouldn't work in the machines (such as grocery stores, the train station, etc.), I would hand the card to the clerk and say: This card doesn't have a chip to use in the machine, but I understand you have another way to swipe it. And they always did. So you may want to try that and see if it works where you are.
 

Carolinian

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In Scotland this past August I used both a Starwood American Express and a Hilton HHonors Visa card. When I figured out why my cards wouldn't work in the machines (such as grocery stores, the train station, etc.), I would hand the card to the clerk and say: This card doesn't have a chip to use in the machine, but I understand you have another way to swipe it. And they always did. So you may want to try that and see if it works where you are.

I tried that in the Netherlands, with no luck. Good thing they at least do it in Scotland.
 

scotlass

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No, we did not need a pin#.

Oops! I thought I had posted this but didn't find it at first. Sorry for the double response.
 

Carol C

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No, we did not need a pin#.

Oops! I thought I had posted this but didn't find it at first. Sorry for the double response.

Thanks, Scotlass. I set up my pin yesterday with my new Cap One card...it was easy and can be done via phone when calling to authorize your card. Now another question...

When I set up my pin, there was a suggestion in their outgoing instruction msg. They said overseas in some cases that if a 4 digit pin begins with zero, it might not work. Does anyone have experience with a 4-digit pin not working in England or France...beginning with a zero (or otherwise)? :shrug:
 

mfan

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Just wondering, even if you have a pin, would the card work without the "chip"? Are those card readers capable of scanning magnetic strips as well?

Also, I thought the pin they give out in the US is for cash advances only? Will they waive the cash advance fees when used this way?
 

Carolinian

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A few days ago I put up a link on the Links Directory (under ''Website Navigation'') at www.timeshareforums.com to an article with a good table of banks' fees on ATM and cc use overseas. That might be helpful for info on this subject.
 

Carol C

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A few days ago I put up a link on the Links Directory (under ''Website Navigation'') at www.timeshareforums.com to an article with a good table of banks' fees on ATM and cc use overseas. That might be helpful for info on this subject.

Why can't someone post the info here so it would be easier to access that advice without surfing around?
 

happymum

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We had trouble in France using a non-chip Visa card. It was fine when swiped by a cashier, but if it was used in a stand-alone machine, it was rejected. One example was at the train station when we first arrived, and unfortunately there was no alternative available, so we had to haul our luggage quite a distance to find a manned entrance. :(
 

mfan

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We had trouble in France using a non-chip Visa card. It was fine when swiped by a cashier, but if it was used in a stand-alone machine, it was rejected. One example was at the train station when we first arrived, and unfortunately there was no alternative available, so we had to haul our luggage quite a distance to find a manned entrance. :(

Did you still have to provide a PIN when the card was swiped by a cashier?
 

scotlass

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My Capital One card was cancelled after they picked up a fraudulent charge on it. When I got the new one, I called to activate and an operator came on to ask if I wanted a pin number associated with it. Having read the thread about pin numbers and CC's, I said yes, and now I should be good to go in Europe. Thanks TUG!
 
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