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Old 05-27-2012, 08:46 PM   #1
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Travelers Checks?

Does anybody still use travelers checks? Going on 2+ month trip and want to pay as we go but not sure about carrying large amount of cash. Never had large amount of cash before and dont know how to act. Also dont want to use credit cards. Help please....
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Old 05-27-2012, 08:50 PM   #2
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Are you staying in the US or going somewhere outside the US?

In the US debit cards are fine.

Outside the US you should look in to a low exchange rate card. Last I heard Capital One has a card that doesn't charge you currency exchange fees.
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Old 05-27-2012, 08:54 PM   #3
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Also dont want to use credit cards. Help please....
Why not? Nowadays your liability for credit card theft, fraud etc is either zero or $50 at most. We use credit cards for absolutely everything from ice cream to $400 fuel fills, and pay the bill electronically at the end of the month. The other benefit is that we can track and budget every expense. Travelers checks are, well, kind of dated.
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Old 05-27-2012, 08:56 PM   #4
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Are you staying in the US or going somewhere outside the US?

In the US debit cards are fine.

Outside the US you should look in to a low exchange rate card. Last I heard Capital One has a card that doesn't charge you currency exchange fees.
We will be going through Canada as well as here in the USA.
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Old 05-27-2012, 08:56 PM   #5
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Last I heard Capital One has a card that doesn't charge you currency exchange fees.

Capital One Professional Visa is what we use. No fees or exchange rate hikes for foreign use.
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Old 05-27-2012, 09:04 PM   #6
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Get a debit card that has your photo on it.
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Old 05-27-2012, 10:13 PM   #7
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There is actually more risk to a debit card than anything else. Of course this depends on the amount you have in the bank. A credit card is the best way to go, the least liability.
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Old 05-27-2012, 10:25 PM   #8
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My spouse will occasionally still use traveler's checks when traveling rather than carrying cash. Not everyplace you want to go , see, or thing you want to buy accepts credit cards. Mostly for large family type vacations... which the last was 8? years ago? So it might have been that long since he used them. disclaimer... he won't use a cell phone either....and he's an electrical engineer... you would think he'd want all the gadgets...LOL!
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Old 05-27-2012, 10:44 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by puddintang View Post
Does anybody still use travelers checks? Going on 2+ month trip and want to pay as we go but not sure about carrying large amount of cash. Never had large amount of cash before and dont know how to act. Also dont want to use credit cards. Help please....

If you don't want to use any plastic cards, open a checking account at a large
bank that has branches in Canada, too. Deposit your money and every so
often stop at a branch and cash a check for what you think will last you for a week or so.
No cards and no wad of cash.
But take some Travelers Checks too, so not all your money is in one place.
Have fun....

.
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Old 05-27-2012, 11:20 PM   #10
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How about a bank card at an ATM? I haven't used Traveler's Checks for years, but I can go to an ATM and have cash immediately. Debit Card use can be a problem, when you use them at some merchants they put a 'reserve' on way more than the purchase price. You could overdraw the account.
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Old 05-27-2012, 11:56 PM   #11
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The answer is yes, people still use travellers cheques. And they have some advantages and disadvantages. If they are lost or stolen, they can be replaced. They also work when cards and wallets get lost or stolen. You can also get them for specific currencies (i.e. Canadian). You also know exactly what you have got which is not always the case with debit or credit cards. Not to mention cards can be compromised and cutoff with little or no warning under certain circumstances. The only real downside is that people are less familiar with them so there is the chance some wet behind the ears school kid who is the only one at the till might not want to take them because he won't know what they are.
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Old 05-28-2012, 12:33 PM   #12
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I suppose you can still use traveler checks. Younger store clerks may not know what they are, but they still work fine. Last time I used one myself was about 10 years ago, but I received one in payment a couple years back. I just deposited it in my checking account like any other check.

Personally, though, I side with those who recommend using a credit card or a debit card. I have used both in Canada.
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Old 05-28-2012, 02:24 PM   #13
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If you use a credit card or debit card & you don't frequently travel, you should notify the bank or carrier of the card, that you will be traveling & into what areas you will be traveling. I have had the card companies call me several times when we first stated traveling about 6 years ago. They just want to make sure its you that is using your account. I work for a large travel industry company, on occasion when my fellow workers who only travel a few times a year go out of the country with out notifying the CC company their cards have been put on hold and this always seems to happen on the weekend.

I have used travelers checks in the recent past and as some have mentioned above, not all the clerks even know what they are let alone how to use them. But if you go this route I would suggest you get a well known company travelers checks and you can always take them to a bank and cash what you may need for a few days.

We are also going on a 5 week vacation this summer, now that you bring this up it is something we had not discussed. Although I imagine we will just continue to use our Credit Cards and get the cash back on purchases then pay it off when we return. Just need to be careful and not go over budget.
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Old 05-28-2012, 02:58 PM   #14
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We use our debit card exclusively for years and never had a problem. We dont leave home without it.
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