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          A Visa Ad Campaign for the Olympics

Visa had the slogan “It’s everywhere you want to be" from 1995-2006. And in 2014, they brought back the slogan and trimmed it to “Everywhere you want to be” in their worldwide campaigns. I've tried to bring Visa branded credit cards or debit cards on my travels because of the wide acceptance of Visa. This year I've experienced something new to me on one of the Visa branded debit cards I purchased. I discovered that the biggest pre -paid debit card issuer of Visa and Mastercard, Green Dot Bank, now rejects foreign transactions (except for Canada and Mexico.) I checked with Visa and the issuers are allowed to do that. News to me. I was under the mistaken belief that a Visa branded card was good wherever Visa was accepted provided the issuer knew it was not fraud. I've had some issues with the bank blocking of cards , but at least there was a process to unblock the cards. In this case, there is not. Call ahead of time before purchasing a pre- paid debit card and check to see what countries the card will work in.  And if the card will work, let the issuer know your travel plans so they can remove the block. Don't rely on just on  companies websites because very little is written.


If you want a thing done, ask a busy man.


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Very good advice, Rob...and also check with the card-issuer what fees it charges for overseas use...some of them not only charge foreign-exchange fees, but also hefty ATM fees!


One idea that may make sense for many travelers: Charles Schwab has a "high-yield investment" checking account that seems almost like a dream. No fees, no minimum balance, no foreign exchange fees, no ATM fees, and if anyone charges you an ATM fee, they refund it.


It's linked to an investment account, but you don't have to invest. And the ATM card is a debit instead of loading money onto the card, you just deposit it or transfer it to your own account. I hate to sound like a paid shill...but it's really been great for me!


The Visa rule you were thinking of goes the other way: The bank can decide whether to allow use in other countries or not, but unless the bank says no, the merchant is required to honor it.

The best part of every trip is realizing that it has upset your expectations

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