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Set Travel Notifications Online at Capital One and Chase Bank

By Jim Bruene on January 25, 2011 6:27 PM | Comments (2)

image Since I'm about to cross the Atlantic for our FinovateEurope conference, I wanted to warn my card issuers that they'll soon be seeing unusual charges. Luckily, two of my issuers now allow customers to handle that online, saving time and money for the bank and me. Thank-you Capital One and Chase Bank (see screenshots below).

However, I was only batting .250 since six did not offer an online option (at least not for my account types): American Express, Bank of America, Citibank, Discover, US Bank and Wells Fargo.

Bottom line: In the not-to-distant future, this manual process will be rendered moot, because my issuers will know where I am via mobile phone GPS (see Finsphere posts). But until then, I appreciate the time savings of the online option and am more likely to use these two cards because of it.

Capital One "Set Travel Notification" link within Customer Service area (25 Jan. 2010)

Capital One "Set Travel Notification" within Customer Service Area

Capital One's Set Travel Notification form

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Chase Bank's Travel Notification Form within Customer Center

Chase Bank's Travel Notification Form within Customer Service

Chase Bank's Travel Notification Form

Chase Bank's Travel Notification Form

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Wells Fargo (who does not offer on online travel notification option) has taken this problem to the extreme. My business account (with Wachovia for 13 years, now taken over by WF), now requires me to notify them in advance of ANY trip, foreign or domestic. If I don't, they stop payments on any thing I use my account debit card for, like meals, airport parking, etc. They are even stopping things that aren't travel related, like recurring payments I had set up four years ago for web hosting or other recurring services. Suddenly I am having to call Wells Fargo weekly to either clear a transaction, or to alert their "Falcon Team" (their name, not mine) that I will be in GA next week, and PA the week after. If I don't tell them, they can block my card entirely the first time I order coffee at an out of state airport. It's gotten so bad, that even if I pay for airport parking (paid when I return!) at the local airport which is only 45 minutes from my house, they block it. They even block transactions from Ft. Lauderdale, which is only 3 hours from my house, and in the same state. All these blocks are allegedly for fraud protection. I can't imagine any company that has traveling salesmen like me being able to manage this without hiring additional staff just to clear every travel plan with the bank firs, and then alert them of every change in travel when a client postpones or cancels. This will put me out of business. My only solution for now is to switch banks, after 13 years with them. Their loss.

Why not experiment by going abroad with 10 cards (some advertising "no foreign transaction fee", some not) Spend a set sum in local currency on each of them, and see what that works out to in $, after fees and exchange rates...

I think you will find the no transaction fees ones fare little better. They all gouge you, no matter which way you turn.

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