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An Indepth Look At Credit Cards Vs Debit Cards For Road Trips


Generally, the typical American household will have four debit or credit cards. The use of these cards and their overall efficiency and effectiveness becomes more pronounced if you are constantly on the road in your travel trailer. This is usually the case since when traveling; whether you're a college student or vacationing with the family, most people don’t like to travel with cash. When looking for a card, it is important to pick the card that’s the best fit for your specific needs, the overall convenience, fraud protection levels, credit building (for bad, no or low credit rating), interest levels as well as rewards or offers that the card may offer the user from time to time. To fully appreciate the pros and cons of credit cards vs debit cards for road trips, it is important to first understand what both forms of payment mean.

A debit card is different from a credit card in that the funds are deducted from the account immediately, whereas a credit card uses what is termed as a line of credit that is repaid at a later time. A debit card is solely issued by a bank to its customers while a credit card doesn’t necessarily have to be issued by a bank. Most debit cards have two main features which can make them more desirable when traveling; the ability to buy items at stores that have automated credit or debit card machines as well as the ability to withdraw cash from ATMs that are associated with the bank account.

If you are using your debit card for an online purchase, you will most likely not be required to enter your PIN but will be required to enter the four or three digit security for the card in question and the funds will be deducted from your account immediately. However, if you are using a credit card, you will most likely be required to enter your PIN and the amount of money used will not be deducted from your account immediately.

It is also important to note that when it comes to security, this does vary from the card that you opt to use. With credit cards, you are only liable for up to $50 of any fraudulent use. However, for a stolen or lost debit card, the financial loss is limited to $50 only if you report the loss or theft of your PIN code or card within 2 days after you learn about it. For both credit and debit cards, if you fail to report any unauthorized charges on the card within sixty (60) days of the date of the statement listing were made, then you could be held liable for any unauthorized withdrawals afterwards.

With a debit card, in the event that there is a dispute, the amount of money will already have been debited from your account, forcing you to wait for a settlement of the matter at hand before the said funds can be returned. If you are traveling and short of cash, this can really affect your plans if your money has been wrongfully debited and you are then forced to wait for an inordinate amount of time. On the other hand, if you are using a credit card, you won’t be out of any money as the unauthorized charges are being investigated.

In the event of unauthorized charges on either your debit or credit card, it is always recommended that you contact the vendor or business that made the charge. You should request to be given a copy of the signed receipt as well as any other information they can provide you with about that particular purchase and let them know that you will be reporting the anomaly to the local law enforcement agency. You should ensure that you have kept a file of all the calls, conversations and reports you have had with various law enforcement, banks and businesses involved in one way or the other with the misdemeanor.

If are planning to get a new credit card, make sure to also invest in a RFID blocking wallet and\or sleeve. Check out the Youtube clip below to find out why.

Another area of concern is the rewards. Even though both cards tend to have some rewards system or perks, credit cards tend to have more attractive rewards such as travel insurance as well as extended warranty of purchased items such as refunds or replacements on defective goods ordered online.

Lastly, if you are keen on enhancing your credit rating then a debit card won’t do you much good since they don’t enhance your overall credit rating since you are using your own money. Due to this fact, debit card transactions don’t get reported to credit agencies or companies.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q When was the credit card invented?

A: The first universal credit card, was introduced in 1950, by the Diners’ Club Inc. All courtesy of Franks McNamara, who predicted that someday, the restaurants all over New York would eventually honour his card. And “Amen” to that, as credit cards have now gained worldwide acceptance and adopted in many establishments all around the world.

Q: When did debit cards start being used?

A: The first debit cards started being used as early as 1966, with the 1980’s and 1990’ seeing the use of debit cards picking up, as more ATMs started cropping up to match the growing demand. By 1990, debit cards use rose to about 300 million transactions, with the numbers increasing more and more by the day.

Q: Which credit cards are smart cards?

A: The Credit Cards dubbed Smart Cards, are cards which have adopted the EMV (Europay, MasterCard, and VisaCard) technology system. It features the use of computer chips to authenticate and secure chip card transactions, as well as requires pin input to authorize transactions an effort of which strives to eliminate credit card fraud, not forgetting this integration enables international linkage for business. Here are some of the credit cards that are smart cards; Capital One QuickSilverOne, Citi, Chase Slate, American Express, Barclaycard Arrival Plus, and Chase Freedom Unlimited.

Q: Are debit cards accepted everywhere?

A: The answer is Yes and No. “Yes” in that all points of sales with card machines allow the use of Debit Cards to make purchases, the same also goes for payment gateways. And “No” in that points of sale which do not have card machines for making debit cards or accept cash only in payment for goods and services, will limit the use of the debit card in making purchases.

Q: Are debit cards accepted internationally?

A: Yes, through Visa Debit cards or international debit cards, one can make international transaction or purchases. The Visa technology systems, are well integrated, to allow for the exchange of information and funds among financial institutions, merchants, consumers. A non-profit organization, business, and governments, to allow for the purchase of products and services worldwide.

Q: Are debit cards insured?

A: Yes, Debit cards are indeed insured, and the insurance benefits are quite lively and attractive, but with one condition in that observed expenses and purchases must be incurred through the debit card. These include:

Lost Card Liability- which protects against unauthorized transactions at merchants and online stores on lost card, thus all purchase made are not liable to owner of the debit card

Purchase protection- Goods purchased with the Debit Card enjoy insurance from threat of fire, theft, or loss, of Merchandise, bought in transit till 90 days from the date of purchase

Air Accident Insurance- Covers loss of life due to air accident in domestic or international travel as well.

Lost Baggage Insurance- Cover for baggage loss when traveling. But the ticket used must have been bought by debit card of the company

Q: Which credit cards offer price protection?

A: Price protection, applies when you buy an item or product with your credit card but within a period of time after having purchased the said item, you find lower prices of that said item. The price protection feature refunds the difference. Credit cards which offer this feature include; MasterCard, Citi, Chase, and Discover,

Q: Which credit cards have annual fees?

A: Annual fee Credit Cards, just as the name suggests, are the type of credit cards automatically charged once a year for the benefits that are associated or come with the card. Credit cards offering this offer include; Chase Sapphire, Capital One and Citi

Q: Are debit cards protected?

A: Yes, Debit Cards are indeed protected, through the Visa’s Zero Liability policy, which guarantees that one will not be held responsible for unauthorized charges made with your account or account information. This protection applies if your card is lost, stolen or used for fraudulent expenditures, online or offline.

Q: Why do debit cards have chips?

A: The Chip technology, commonly known as EMV, which stands for Europay, MasterCard, and Visa, is the technology that makes debit cards much safer since they require authentication for every transaction. Thus with the chip technology, you’ll enjoy greater security when making purchases, as well as greater acceptance of the cards in making sales internationally.

Q: Which credit cards have travel insurance?

A: Most people often don’t realize that they already have travel insurance, whenever they charge their trip to their credit card, all free and automatic, all indicated in the Credit card print. Although the coverage offered by each varies, the offer is regardless incredible, and worthwhile. Whether due to illness or injuries occurring before travel, credit card insurance has got your back. Here are the best credit cards that have travel insurance; Chase Sapphire Card, Citibank Advantage Card, United Visa Explorer Card, Hilton Honors American Express Card, Capital One Ventures Rewards Card, as well as the Discover Card.

Q: Which credit cards offer roadside assistance?

A: Many Credit cards provide this service that provides a sense of security if your vehicle breaks down, and also at the worst of inconvenience. Credit card roadside assistance provides peace of mind; all one has to do is you can call a toll-free number and support sent your way. From towing your, to flat tire changing, delivering some gallons of gasoline, to jumpstarting your car, covered by your credit card, with the expense charged to your account. Here are some of the best credit cards that offer roadside assistance; American Express Roadside Assistance, MasterCard Roadside Assistance, Visa Roadside Dispatch, AAA Classic, AAA Plus, AAA Premier, Ford Roadside Assistance.

Q: Where are prepaid debit cards sold?

A: With the acceptance of debit cards growing more and more by the day, prepaid debit cards are now found or are sold at most convenient stores worldwide. Some common places where prepaid credit cards are acquired include; Gas Stations, Big-Box Retailers, Drugstores, Banks, as well as Online Retailers.

Q: What debit cards work with Lyft?

A: Lyft, accepts all debits cards, tied to checking accounts and prepaid accounts. So all one has to do is to add or update the debit card in the lyft payment info, and just like that your debit card will now work with lyft in making payments for a ride.

Q: What debit cards accept MoneyPak?

A: MoneyPak offers a fast, easy and reliable way for reloading prepaid cards. Some of the most common debit cards accepted by moneypak include; Rushcard, American Express Serve, Walmart Money Card, Halogen Prepaid, Green Dot Card, as well as Achieve Card among much more. Not satisfied, the moneypak official website gives you an option to search for whether the debit card is accepted. To check this, all you have to do is to enter the six digit account number, f the account you want to reload.

Q: What debit cards work with Uber?

A: Both Visa Debit cards and MasterCard Debit Cards, work well with uber for payment services. The task here is that you have to update payment method for your means. During your ride with an uber, use your app to ensure that your preferred payment method is already checked, for when your ride ends, your preferred payment method will be charged.

Q: Who regulates credit cards?

A: The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a government agency, that takes cares of all related financial complains, and makes sure that financial companies treat you well

Q: When are credit cards reported to the credit bureaus?

A: Report of Credit cards balances to the credit bureaus done at the end of each billing cycle.

Q: Who pays off credit card debt after death?

A: There indeed no one right answer to this question, as some factors come into play including where you live and also who applied for the card, can radically alter the situation as your spouse or children are likely to inherit that debt and assume responsibility. So here are two scenarios, they first being, if the card was yours alone, no joint account holders as anything else in that lane, then the debt is yours alone. Thus when you pass away, your estate assumes responsibility in paying off the debt. If the property goes to proving your will, your assets and debts will be examined and weighed upon and, guided by law, in the right order in paying your bills now established. The now Remaining assets will be accordingly distributed to your heirs through your will (if you have one), or through state law (if you don't).

In general, the management of debts depends on which categories it falls into:

#1. Unsecured debt. Describes credit cards not tied to an asset that is your car or home. With this type of debt, lenders have limited recourse to claim your assets if unsecured debt is left unpaid. These factors partly explain why interest rates and fees can are high for unsecured products.

#2. Secured debt. Describes debts tied to assets, a good example being a mortgage, such as a house. Thus the lender is within appropriate rights to reclaim possession of the house to recoup the cost of the loan.



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