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Do I need a Chip/Pin Credit Card?

Sarasota, Florida
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Do I need a Chip/Pin Credit Card?

Hello,

New to the forum... I saw some older posts regarding chip and pin credit cards, but wanted a fresh perspective with the ever changing technology.

We are traveling from the US to London for 4 days in September and then taking the Eurostar from London to Paris and will be in Paris for 4 days.

Right now, I have the Barclaycard Arrival World MC that does not charge foreign transaction fees, but it is a magnetic strip card. Barclay offers the World Elite card that has Chip/PIN technology that I am considering.

I prefer to use my card as opposed to carrying cash on me, but I am worried that many places in Paris (and London for that matter) might not accept a card with a magnetic strip and would only accept a Chip/Pin card. Is that a valid concern?

I don't want to run into an issue where I go to places, try to use my swipe card, and the merchant not accept that type of payment.

I guess my question is... Would my trip be easier with a Chip/Pin card? Or can I get away with a traditional magnetic strip credit card?

Thank you all!

Paris, France
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1. Re: Do I need a Chip/Pin Credit Card?

No, you don't need a chip and pin credit card. You card will work anywhere where a human can swipe it. The only place you will have problems is in automated machines.

But be aware that many shops/restaurants will have minimum purchase amounts for cards, of mybe 15€ and some may not accept them at all, so you will need to have cash to pay at these times.

Don't forget to notify your bank that you will be traveling so that they don't put a fraud block on your card.

And it's also a good idea to carry more than one card as it seems there's always a time when one card doesn't work but another will.

Paris, France
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2. Re: Do I need a Chip/Pin Credit Card?

In the good news department, by the end of 2015, all new American cards will be internationally accepted chip + pin.

Saratoga Springs, NY
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3. Re: Do I need a Chip/Pin Credit Card?

I would get the chip and pin, especially since it's your regular bank.

I never had a swipe card rejected, but the chip and pin is more secure technology. Plus you will be able to use it in the machines.

Chicago
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for Seven Mile Beach, East End
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4. Re: Do I need a Chip/Pin Credit Card?

Kerouac2 - Where did you hear that all US cards will be chip and PIN by 2015? That would be great but I find it hard to believe.

B.

Saratoga Springs, NY
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5. Re: Do I need a Chip/Pin Credit Card?

It's true, October 2015 actually. I'm seeing more and more chip and pin readers on terminals in the stores I shop at. They aren't active yet, but they are there.

Paris, France
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6. Re: Do I need a Chip/Pin Credit Card?

As of October 2015, the responsibility of fraud switches from the banks in the US to the merchants who do not have EMV card terminals. So all of the banks are eager to switch as fast as possible now so they can leave the merchants holding the bag if they don't upgrade their equipment.

Sydney, Australia
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for Train Travel
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7. Re: Do I need a Chip/Pin Credit Card?

Will it be chip-and-PIN, or chip-and-sign? As I understand it, most of the chipped cards currently being issued in USA are chip-and-sign.

Edited: 12 July 2014, 20:46
Saratoga Springs, NY
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8. Re: Do I need a Chip/Pin Credit Card?

Chip and pin - the terminals I'm seeing are just like the ones in stores in Europe

ETA - it seems every month I'm hearing about another American bank now offering true chip and pin cards. It's happening!

Edited: 12 July 2014, 20:48
Paris, France
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9. Re: Do I need a Chip/Pin Credit Card?

Yes, the chip + sign cards are just a silly and useless interlude. I can't even imagine why they were ever invented.

New Mexico
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10. Re: Do I need a Chip/Pin Credit Card?

Even Walmart stores now have the chip and pin machines. However, if you insert your card instead of swiping it, it asks for your signature.