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us credit card problems?

Madison, Wisconsin
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645 posts
9 reviews
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us credit card problems?

I think I've searched through every past post here on TA on the issue of using American credit cards in the UK. I'm still as confused as ever about it...since our banks here basically refuse to offer chip and pin cards, I am looking for guidance on whether traveling in more rural areas will present problems when paying in shops, restaurants, hotels, if using the standard US magnetic stripe credit card? Are there other places (road tolls, petrol stations, anywhere else you can think of) where our antiquated US credit cards may present a problem?

DH and I are trying to plan a double milestone (birthdays and anniversary) trip to the Cotswolds next year, but are now questioning if this is even particularly do-able. We would rather not be traveling with a ton of cash to bypass the chip/pin vs. magnetic stripe credit card problem. I would really appreciate any and all advice, experiences, etc... on this issue. I know we'd be okay in London, but we've done London to death over the years and really wanted to spend a week slowly meandering through the lovely Cotswolds.

Thanks in advance for any advice you can lend. If this isn't going to be a problem (really hoping so!), I will most certainly be back with more destination specific questions as we move ahead with our planning.

1. Re: us credit card problems?

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Los Angeles...
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for Venice, Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur
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2. Re: us credit card problems?

All I can offer you is my personal experience which was having ZERO issues with our US issued credit cards and ATM cards throughout the UK: Scotland, England, inclusive of the Cotswolds, Bath, and Oxford, and North Wales. As for credit cards, we used Master Charge and American Express.

Dunfermline, United...
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3. Re: us credit card problems?

You should have nothing to worry about. Merchants can dust down the old swipe machine without batting an eyelid.

As you've been to the UK before, same rules apply. VISA or Mastercard debit card with a four digit PIN number for ATMs and a credit card for purchases.

Remember to inform your card issuers that you will be using the cards abroad and make a note of card numbers and who to phone in case anything happens to the cards

Don't bring travellers cheques or Discover cards. Neither are welcome

Enjoy the Cotswolds

Madison, Wisconsin
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645 posts
9 reviews
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4. Re: us credit card problems?

Wonderful news! Thanks for all the input that we'll be just fine even with our "old fashioned" US credit cards. We generally hit a cashpoint machine each day with our ATM card for those smaller cash purchases (like the cream tea Diz mentioned above), so no problems with that.

Sigh of relief...let the research and planning commence in earnest! Thank you all again. ;)

5. Re: us credit card problems?

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Removed on: 17 July 2014, 05:18