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Old 03-13-2009, 03:13 PM
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I am not sure what thread to put this warning under, but another not so rosy thing happened on our cruise I have tried to blank from my memory. My credit card was frozen on the second day. I had failed to notify my credit card issuer that I was traveling. They received a charge from Curacao, audited it as possible fraud, and froze the card pending hearing from us. Apparently notifying your card issuer is standard practice, but 10 cruises in I had never done this. It was the Royal Carib. Visa. It was a bit humiliating, a lot inconvenient, and I was unable to get the issuing bank on the phone to verify why the card was being declined (ship to shore was not going through, cell phone did--I was on hold and long time and with no international calling plan I gave up after about $100 phone bill and decided to get to the bottom of this at home). Business credit card still worked, thankfully. God bless those folks at Actief in Curacao--they took us on our tour with no prepayment, on the promise that we would get a valid card to them on our return home. Imagine! We must look honest.
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Old 03-13-2009, 03:32 PM
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I have had issues with the RCI Visa card too. In my case it was the first time I tried to use it, and it was at an ATM. The transaction was denied and the card was locked out. I had to call the Bank Of America fraud center to get the card reactivated. The reason? BOA: "It was the first time you tried to use our card and it was at an ATM." Me: "But what is the purpose of having a PIN number if you are going to lock the card out when I try to use it?" BOA: "Why didn't you go inside the bank to use it, instead of going to the outside ATM?" (Yes, I guess they can tell if an ATM is outside or inside). We went back and forth two more times before I said "is the card active now or not?" The guy said it was cleared up. I was so angry that I almost canceled it. I can appreciate them looking for fraud but this was over the line in my view. Since then I haven't had any problems using it, but I guess I need to call them before we head out on our Canada cruise.

At the time my regular bank ATM card had stopped working so I was waiting for a replacement card to be sent and needed cash, so I figured I'd try to RCI Visa to see if the PIN worked. Boy, did I get a surprise.
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Old 03-13-2009, 03:41 PM
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spoheat, I went ahead and moved the topic here to give it exposure to all readers. I hope you got my message. I'm sorry to hear of this happening to you. I know it can be humiliating, I had something similar happen once. Thank goodness the pursers let me use their phone for free to straighten it out. I'm glad you posted this though so people will be reminded to call their card companies before leaving home. I always call mine now and they want detailed information about what islands/countries I'll be visiting and the dates of my travel. BTW, I was using my worthless Carnival card, so it's not just a Royal Caribbean card issue.

That was very nice of the tour operator to do that for you. Again, sorry to hear of this happening but let it serve as a head's up to everyone.

Dwayne
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Old 03-13-2009, 03:46 PM
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We always call the CC company before we even cross the border.
We have been caught before with them denying the charge

DH went on a driving trip last summer ...it wasn't until he called me from the hotel I asked him if he had called VISA to let them know he was out of the country. ( I reminded him 3 days before he left ...MEN!!! )
He called right away ..they said it was a good thing because they would have denied the hotel charge.
Wouldn't that be a surprise in the middle of the night
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Old 03-13-2009, 06:30 PM
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Sorry that happened to you, spoheat - and thank you for sharing this important information.
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Old 03-14-2009, 05:27 AM
 
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We haven't had the problem when cruising ( I suppose they know we leave the US fairly regularly) but I have had a few large payments stopped from time to time. Mostly the questions come up when ordering big purchases on the Internet- like TV's. With the last large item, I even called them in advance to let them know a charge would be coming but it didn't help.
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Old 03-14-2009, 08:25 AM
 
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We also had it happen once to us and since then have called ahead on our two CC's and on our debit card in order to avoid this happening. We were in Jamiaca at an all inclusive..We had been delayed getting out of Boston so spent the day in town shopping and what not. When we got to our hotel our first charge was for an excursion and got denied..Had to call them and get it squared away. I guess they figured it was stolen and someone took off on a trip..Live and learn ---the hard way sometimes.

Peter1
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Old 03-14-2009, 11:05 AM
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I once had a credit card blocked in St. Thomas because the bank's computer suddenly flagged my account for making too many small (under $10) purchases out of country in a short period of time! The phone call to the US to straighten it out was absolutely annoying since I had notified the bank of my cruise and the ports I was visiting in advance!

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Old 03-14-2009, 11:54 AM
 
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I know this sounds to simplified, but why can't they just make everyone use a pin number for all purchases similar to a debit card? Without knowing the pin the card numbers would be worthless.
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Old 03-14-2009, 02:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by RichC:
I know this sounds to simplified, but why can't they just make everyone use a pin number for all purchases similar to a debit card? Without knowing the pin the card numbers would be worthless.
I think they are converting the cards to the new PIN ones ..we got ours in Nov...
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