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Travel Considerations For Kids With Cards

Brothers at Disneyland

We’re seeing a lot more kids on the move with their cards these days. My own son just wrapped up an out-of-state summer job stint.

If you have a teen traveling abroad, a child headed to camp or college, an athlete on a travel team, or a family trip looming with the youngsters in tow, here are some things to consider:

  1. Travel notice — if a card will be used outside the US, you’ll need a travel notice on file with our card processor so they don’t inadvertently block the card for suspicious activity. Contact us before your trip to let us know the countries on your itinerary and the start/end dates of the overall visit. If you’re just traveling within the US, no travel notice is necessary.
  2. Foreign transaction fees — when traveling abroad, many cards will ding you between one and three percent for each foreign purchase. Not FamZoo. We have no foreign transaction fees, so you can cross this concern off your list.
  3. Activity Alerts — if your child will be traveling on their own or making side excursions on a family vacation, you’ll want to turn on activity alerts. That way, you’ll know right away whenever there is trouble with the card. Contact us if you need help resolving an issue (like an inopportune card block due to incorrect PIN entry or atypical purchase activity).

    That said, I’ll admit that I like the activity alerts for an entirely different reason: the parental peace of mind they provide. I get to see my traveling kiddos are OK without nagging them with phone calls or texts every day.

  4. Backup card — never a bad idea to have a plan B. Consider adding a backup card to keep in a separate spot in case the main card is lost or stolen on the trip.
  5. Souvenir budget — heading out on a family vacation with the youngsters in tow? I have 6 rules for setting up a souvenir budget that will reduce whining, teach the kids some budgeting basics, and save the family money. See the rules HERE.
  6. Emergency funds — no matter how carefully you plan, unanticipated expenses always seem to creep into a trip. Make sure your kid knows how money requests and reimbursements work before hitting the road.

Bon voyage!

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