How & Why to Notify Credit Cards When You Travel Abroad

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Have an overseas trip coming up?  Make sure to tell your credit card issuers you’ll be traveling!

How Why To Notify Credit Cards When You Travel Abroad
To Avoid Problems, Notify Your Credit Card Issuer Before You Travel. Certain Cards Will Even Let You Set Travel Alerts Online!

I’ll explain why this is important.  And show you the different ways to set travel alerts!

Set Travel Alerts for Your Credit Cards When Traveling Abroad

Setting travel notifications is important because credit card issuers will often block a card if they think there’s suspicious activity.  And you don’t want the headache of having a charge declined while on vacation!

Also, don’t forget to use a card that does not charge foreign transaction fees when traveling outside the US.  Because fees usually negate the value of miles & points you’re earning!

My favorite no foreign transaction fee card is the Chase Sapphire Preferred which earns 2X points for travel (airfare, hotel, car rental, etc) and dining.  Because that’s what vacation is for, right?  To explore and eat good food! 🙂

How Why To Notify Credit Cards When You Travel Abroad
Use Your Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and Pay No Foreign Transaction Fees AND Earn Double Points on Travel & Dining Purchases!

The Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard and Citi Prestige cards do not charge foreign transaction fees either.

How to Set Travel Notifications

Of course, you can always call the number on the back of your card to notify your credit card company about a trip.

And with the Chase Sapphire Preferred card, you’ll even get a real person on the other end of the line right away!  But with other cards you might have to go through an automated program, which can be a pain.

The good news is some cards let you set travel alerts online, in case you can’t or don’t want to talk.

Chase has a “Travel Notification Form” online.  Just login and go to the “Customer Center” tab.  Then click the “Travel Notification Form.”

How Why To Notify Credit Cards When You Travel Abroad
It’s Easy to Fill Out Chase’s Travel Notification Form Online

With the Barclaycard Arrival Plus card, it’s also easy to set up travel alerts online.

When you log-in to your account, click the “Services” drop-down tab.  Then select “My travel.”

How Why To Notify Credit Cards When You Travel Abroad
Look for “My Travel” Under the “Services” Tab to Set-Up a Travel Notification on Your Barclaycard Arrival Plus Card

Then enter your trip information, like where you’re traveling and the dates you’ll be gone.

How Why To Notify Credit Cards When You Travel Abroad
You’ll Be Able to Add Your Trip Destinations and Dates to the Online Form

You’ll be able to review the details of your travel alert, and then submit the form!

How Why To Notify Credit Cards When You Travel Abroad
Don’t Forget to Review Your Travel Information Before Submitting the Travel Notification Form

Once you’ve submitted the travel notification, you shouldn’t have any issues using your card.

The Barclaycard Arrival Plus card is also particularly useful overseas because you can use it with a PIN at automated vending machines.  Like those that sell train tickets or gas station kiosks.

My Arrival Plus card definitely came in handy during my trip in Iceland!

For cards issued by Citi, like the Citi Prestige, you also have the option to set-up trip alerts online.  Although Citi claims it isn’t actually necessary when traveling.

Citi’s travel notification form can be found under the “Account Management” tab after logging-in to your account.

How Why To Notify Credit Cards When You Travel Abroad
Like Many Other Banks, Citibank Allows Customers to Set-Up Travel Alerts Online

Bottom Line

If you’re traveling abroad, don’t forget to set-up a travel alert with your credit card issuer.  Because often times they’ll disable your card if they suspect fraudulent activity.

You can always call the number on the back of the card to set up a trip notification, but some cards will let you submit an alert online!

And remember to use a card with no foreign transaction fees, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred or Barclaycard Arrival Plus!

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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