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Using credit card without a "chip"? It has come to my

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Using credit card without a "chip"? It has come to my

attention that when using a credit card without a chip a merchant will routinely ask for your passport. Also that it needs to be original passport. I really have no intention of doing anything different in Spain than I would anywhere else which is carry only a photocopy of my passport. Anyone else run across this when using Visa credit card from US? Just called my bank that issued my card and they are doing some "trials" for chip cards but they are simply not available to most card holders at this time. Interesting.

Mtwapa, Kenya
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1. Re: Using credit card without a "chip"? It has come to my

Have you got any photo id other than a passport, an id card or a driving license? I only ever carry my passport when actually travelling, I use my UK photocard driving license for id, anything official with a photo and a signature on will do. The driving license has always been accepted on the dozens of occasions I have used credit cards over many years in Barcelona (and elsewhere). Funnily enough although some stores have asked for id, no restaurant ever has

I usually have a photocopy of my passport for use with any officials but I can't remember ever having to use it.

Portland, Oregon
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2. Re: Using credit card without a "chip"? It has come to my

I am currently traveling in Barcelona (only 2 days thus far) and every time I have presented my US credit card, they presented me with a receipt to sign. No mention of a passport.

Except for the automatic machines to purchase Metro tickets. It requires you to enter your 4-digit pin code. I purchased my metro pass in a station where there was no physical ticket office to sign a receipt.

London, United...
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3. Re: Using credit card without a "chip"? It has come to my

I have had a home in Spain for 10 years like Doffcocker never been asked at a restaurant or other tourist type places but regular practice at supermarkets,stores etc to be asked for ID.

Barcelona, Spain
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4. Re: Using credit card without a "chip"? It has come to my

The standard practice in Spain before we were issued with our chip/PIN cards was that we were asked for photo ID for any purchase in a shop (but never in a restaurant, which I don't understand either!!). That applied even in my local supermarket where I was a regular customer so recognised by staff, it was simply the standard policy. In fact only last week I was actually asked for ID in Primark despite having a chip card as Primark doesn't have the chip maxchines! I have also seen that where shops do have chip machines people are asked for photo ID if their card is non-chip.

FNAC actually has, or at least had, a sign in English specifying passport but normally driving licence would be Ok,. In fact citizens of EU countries can travel to Barcelona on their national ID cards (just as Spaniards can travel within the EU with theirs) so it impossible to demand passport of everyone.

I carry my passport on me only when crossing a national border, my Spanish residence card is my standard ID.

Incidentally the question as to why US banks still haven't got round to introducing chip/PIN is interesting. They were introduced in continental Europe a couple of years ago (slightly earlier in the UK, possibly because there is no national ID card there you can be asked to show??). A US poster at that time said US banks said it was too expenisve to issue them. So it costs more to run the system than what is lost by credit-card fraud?! My Spanish credit-card has my photo on it, has done for the last 10 years (several cards ago), people in shops abroad have at times commented "what a good idea" but it was never on offer from my UK bank (for example)

Edited: 07 May 2012, 09:50
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5. Re: Using credit card without a "chip"? It has come to my

I have just returned from Barcelona and had difficulties with my BoA Visa credit card on two occasions when it was simply turned down. Fortunately I also travel with a UK Natwest MC card and this chip and pin card was readily accepted. On the other hand BoA was accepted about 6 times.

Suggest you travel with more than one card.

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6. Re: Using credit card without a "chip"? It has come to my

Thanks for the input in this. I checked with my local US Bank and according to my banker chip cards at US Bank are days away...probably too many days for my trip. I will just go with the photocopy and also have AX which has no chip cards in US either. I would imagine the cost factor has slowed this process down as each merchant needs new machine etc. Reminds me that we seem to be "out of step" on many things including phones which I am learning Europe is on GSM and with the exception of just a few phones (at least with Verizon I think AT and T is better) our phones don't operate there. That is changing now too but again why not just make things universal? Anyway I'm sure for most places we will be fine but now I understand why in Paris I could not use the RER machines from airport to get to the city and had to stand in a mile long line. Those machines or toll machines etc. simply do not accept our cards which is good to know to avoid frustration!!

Hermosa Beach...
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7. Re: Using credit card without a "chip"? It has come to my

I've visited Spain twice a year for the last 12 years. I only carry my passport with me when I'm traveling from one overnight desitination to another. Once in a city I keep my passport in the hotel. I carry a copy of my passport along with my US drivers license. I've rarely been asked to show ID when using my credit card and if I am asked my drivers license has been accepted.

The only exception is when I wanted to purchase a micro sim card for my ipad. I knew they would likely require my passport for this purchase and carried it with me - it's the only time I've had to use it with a credit card purchase.

I wouldn't sweat it - enjoy Spain!

Chicago, Illinois
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8. Re: Using credit card without a "chip"? It has come to my

Yes, merchants did sometimes ask for an original passport with the use of a credit card without a chip.

9. Re: Using credit card without a "chip"? It has come to my

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