Traveling Security Tips

  • Contact the bank and credit card companies and let them know when and where you will be travelling.  Banks and Credit Card Companies monitor card activity in an attempt to detect theft.  If there is a change in your normal card activity and you have not informed your card provider you are traveling, it might cause the provider to think the card is stolen and could result in the provider blocking the card.
  • Check your daily purchase, cash withdrawal, and credit limits on your debit and credit cards before you travel.  You may need to temporarily raise your limits if you plan on spending more than normal.
  • Check the expiration dates on all of your cards.  If they expire while you are traveling, you should contact your card provider several weeks before you leave and request a new card with a new expiration date.
  • Memorize and test the PIN number of each of your cards before you leave.
  • Plan ahead.  Make sure you have more than one method of payment and more than one method of getting cash while you are traveling.  Keep these items in separate places while traveling.
  • Research in advance where you are traveling. What currencies are accepted?  Ask the bank about purchasing foreign currency prior to departure.  This may take a week or more, so don’t wait until the last minute!
  • Visit your card vendor’s website to learn where ATM machines are in the area you will be visiting.  For debit cards provided by Merchants & Farmers Bank; use   Be alert when getting cash.  If too many people are loitering around the ATM, go to a different one.
  • Photocopy all of your credit and debit cards and your passport information.  Keep them separate from the actual cards and passport and keep a copy at home.
  • Sign up for online banking so you can view your daily account activity while travelling and stay on top of bills.
  • When you pay with your credit or debit card, check the sales voucher carefully.  You are liable for the amount written in the box marked “Total”, so make sure it is filled in before you sign.
  • Compare your receipts against your account either thru your online banking access or your written statement.
  • Keep the contact information for your local bank and credit cards separate from the cards in case you need to report a lost or stolen card.
  • Contact the bank or credit card immediately if either your debit or credit card is lost or stolen.
  • Secure travel insurance because accidents can happen.  Consider buying travel health insurance.  Talk with your travel agent.
  • Clean out your wallet before you leave and only take the essentials with you.  Leave valuable jewelry at home.  Never leave your cards or money in your hotel room.  Wear a money belt and don’t carry large sums of cash.

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