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Money Abroad
 

American Express and VISA offer "cash cards" that provide a secure source of cash while traveling

How does this new generation cards work?  Does it provide any benefits for the traveler?

Read our expose and find out if this type of card is for you (or your kids).

 

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Travel Advice - A cash card for travelers?

Credit card companies now offer prepaid money or cash cards issued in US dollars or, in some cases, in foreign currencies (principally the Euro and the British Pound Sterling). These cards can be used at ATM’s that accept the issuing companies credit cards or for purchases at any of the retailers that accept the issuing company’s credit cards for transactions.

The most widely available  currency card is Visa's  TravelMoney Card.

  • One of the major advantages of using this type of card is that the card account number is not linked to your bank account or credit card account and should provide greater protection than using your debit cards at ATMS or your credit card for purchases.
  • The cards are reloadable and may offer a security advantage over the use of cash and travelers checks.

 

Disadvantages

One major disadvantage of this type of card is that you have pay for the start-up and refresh amounts from a credit card.

  • Check to see if your credit card holder will consider the transaction to fund one of these types of card a cash advance and charge you interest on the amount.
    • Also, note that your card has a cash advance limit that may limit the size of the transaction.
  • While these "cash" cards are accepted at a large number of merchants worldwide, they are not as flexible as cash.

Summary

You should decide on your own whether the convenience of prepaid money cards outweighs the fees and restrictions placed on the cards by their issuers. Although, we believe our article to be factual we recommend that you Always read the terms and conditions that bind your use of the cards before you agree to purchase a cash card.

 

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