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[Safety and Security page 5/10]

  • Budget carefully!
  • Prepare banking arrangements before departure
  • Inform your bank and credit card company that you will be traveling and what those dates of travel are. Your credit card company, especially, as they may freeze your card if they notice abnormal purchases away from your place of residence.
  • Check with your bank for information on ATM services abroad.
  • Your bank can advise if you need a new personal identification number (PIN) for overseas access to your account.
  • It may be easier to withdraw from a cheqing account vs. “other” accounts
  • Set up on-line banking if you may need to transfer money from one account to the other – or check with your bank on the best way to do this.
  • Arrive with sufficient local currency - ATMs are widely available but should be used during business hours, inside a bank, supermarket, or large commercial building
  • Leave copies of your card cancellation numbers with a family member in case of emergency.
  • Traveller's cheques can be exchanged at banks but are not usually accepted at retail outlets.
    Credit cards will require the entry of a Personal Identification Number (PIN). Although it is still possible to use a signature in lieu of a PIN entry, some retailers may refuse to take payment by this method because of the increased risk of fraud.
  • Make other arrangements to obtain additional funds if needed
  • Taxation - Familiarize yourself with the tax implications of your time abroad.
  • Some countries impose a departure tax or service fee at point of departure – set aside enough local funds to pay this – see Country Travel Reports
  • Customs: if you are away for more than 7 days, you may bring back goods worth up to $750 without paying duties or taxes, but familiarize yourself with customs regulations before you go and upon your reutrn.
  • VAT (Value Added Tax) refund Retail export scheme/premier tax free tax refund system – allows you to reclaim the tax on some purchases – not all stores participate, minimum purchase (varies by country), you have to fill out a form in the store and keep receipts, only good for purchases made 2-3 months before return to home country. (See printouts from web for full info)
  • Insurance - In addition to medical insurance you may want to buy travel (cancellation) and personal belongings insurance. Read the fine print. You’ll be glad you read it all.

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