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BEFORE YOU CRUISE

5 Financial Cruise Tips

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You’ve saved your hard earned money, paid for your vacation, and now it’s time to sail away. Before you head out, make sure your money’s not going to take a vacation of its own.

Here are some cruise tips to keep yourself financially safe on vacation.

1. Call your credit card company

Want to use your credit card on your cruise – especially in another country? Give your bank a call before you leave. This lets your bank know not to worry if charges suddenly start showing up from Cozumel or Jamaica.

If you don’t let the bank know ahead of time, there’s a good chance the bank will place a security hold on your card rendering it useless until you talk to them to confirm the charges.

One pre-cruise phone call can save a lot of trouble!

2. Make copies of card numbers and IDs

If something bad happens to your credit card, passport, wallet or other important documents while you’re on a cruise, it’s super helpful to have a copy with you. If your credit card is stolen or lost, it’s easier to take care of things if you know the full card number.

3. Make a list of important phone numbers

Very similar to the previous tip, write down and bring with you all the phone numbers for your banks, credit cards, and emergency contacts. Keep this in your cabin in a safe place.

Think about what would happen if your iPhone goes missing too – you lose all your important contacts. If your card is stolen, the number for the card company is usually on the back of the card and not something most people have memorized.

4. Get cash or currency

It’s always a good idea to have some cash with you.

Some merchants and private shore excursions will only take cash. Sometimes you’ll get a cheaper price if you pay in cash. When getting cash for European trips, I wait to get to Europe to get my currency and then I’m not paying exchange rates and fees at a US Bank.

Most European ATMs aren’t allowed to charge surcharges.

5. Pre-paid credit cards

Want to stick to a budget? Or not even bother with the hassle of using your own credit cards internationally? Try pre-paid credit cards. A set amount that’s not tied to your bank account or credit lines. A nice modern version of traveler’s checks gives you freedom and keeps you from overspending too.

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