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Visa and Debit Card Debate

Level Contributor
42 posts
18 reviews
Visa and Debit Card Debate

I know this question was asked a lot of times before we arrived.

Well I have the answer.

We never needed a Credit card. Everyone accepted my Debit card.From hotels to Alamo car booking.

But id advise anyone to get a travel card.

Destination Expert
for Florida
Level Contributor
50,074 posts
22 reviews
1. Re: Visa and Debit Card Debate

No one said you couldnt use a visa debit card.

th reason why we say to use a CC instead, for UK travellers, is that you get consumer portection with a CC, you dont with a DC. This is important if you dont get what you paid for, or if you are charged extra on your return that you werent expecting. As with a CC it is easier to get the money back. With a DC you have to rely on the mechant to agree to give it back.

Under UK law, CCs are jointly liable with the merchant that you get what you paid for, Dc's are like giving them cash.

Melbourne, Florida
Destination Expert
for Melbourne, Florida
Level Contributor
17,757 posts
115 reviews
2. Re: Visa and Debit Card Debate

Good info Amanx, that would be a good one to post on the Orlando forum. Very few people here have debit only cards, they did away with them and now they are debit / credit so any machine can take them. For some reason there are a few places that have older machines that only take credit cards and wont take a debit card which is where the OP may have gotten the info that debit cards dont work.

With a Debit / Credit card the bank stands behind you and just like a credit card company will help settle any disputes about charges. With a debit / credit card if you chose Debit you get the money taken out of your account immediately and if used as credit there is a couple days delay. Its recommended to always use credit at gas stations in case they have skimmers so you are not putting your pin number in for them to read.

Altamonte Springs...
Destination Expert
for St. Augustine
Level Contributor
19,097 posts
41 reviews
3. Re: Visa and Debit Card Debate

There are several advantages of a credit card vs. a debit card.

1. The main reason to have at least one credit card is for emergencies. If you ever have an emergency where you need more money than you brought with you, you are protected. Of course, nobody ever expects an emergency, but they do happen. What if you had a medical emergency and your travelers insurance required you to pay first and then seek reimbursement after you paid the bill and returned home? What about weather related travel delays? In previous winters thousands of people were stranded in places like New York & Boston unable to get to their destinations. This also had a ripple effect across the nation and many travelers had to remain in place for several more days because their domestic and international connections were impacted. This means more $$$ for hotels, meals and rental cars. Although somewhat less likely, but still possible are summer weather-related delays like Hurricane Matthew in 2016 and Irma this year.

2. Hotel & rental car deposits will be simply a hold against your credit limit. It won't (temporarily) deprive you of any cash saved for your trip. This could be several hundred dollars.

3. In case of a disputed charge on a transaction (i.e. rental car charges) you have more recourse (through the cc company) than if you simply paid cash or used a debit card. That kind of transaction is more final.

Also, take a look at this: millionmilesecrets.com/2017/…

Destination Expert
for Florida
Level Contributor
50,074 posts
22 reviews
4. Re: Visa and Debit Card Debate

Most UK debit cards are now Visa Debit- so work in many machines (except gas stations as you have a 6 digit alpha numeric post code, not a 5 digit numeric one).

BUT, visa debit cards dont have the consumer protection, under UK law that Visa Credit ones do.

Divide, Colorado
Destination Expert
for Maldives
Level Contributor
15,428 posts
23 reviews
5. Re: Visa and Debit Card Debate

another thing is that CC's come with lots of extra goodies and freebies like hotel upgrades , frequent flier miles , amazon points , rental car insurance , etc .. silly to give that away .

basically .. having a debit only card is better than lugging around cash but it doesn't protect you in case of emergency or even inconvenience. CC is always the safer and smarter way to go !

Level Contributor
4,468 posts
12 reviews
6. Re: Visa and Debit Card Debate

Stuey, if I am not mistaken you were one of the people who had to alter your plans and evacuate from KW. In your case, a CC was essential, IF you were maxed out on a debit card. A credit card will allow someone to solve the problem and then figure out how to pay credit card a little bit of time after the travel emergency.

I feel I understand, as I was caught in FLL in May because of a health emergency. I used my CC to solve the immediate problems of a hotel and a new set of airline tickets and then deal with insurance and refunds when I got home.

A CC will give peace of mind that a debit card will never do.

Level Contributor
5,013 posts
60 reviews
7. Re: Visa and Debit Card Debate

I work in retail and am still amazed at how many transactions are Debit. I don't recommend it.

First- you are more at risk every time you enter your PIN #.

Second- You are paying the credit card price (an additional %) on each item. Why not get the miles or cashback?

But I also recommend 2 credit cards. In case there's an issue with one being frozen due to an unusual purchase or one over a pre-set amount.

South Jersey
Level Contributor
3,765 posts
68 reviews
8. Re: Visa and Debit Card Debate

I had an instance in Key West where the hotel charged me the incorrect rate. In an attempt to fix it they charged my credit card the correct rate while the preauthorization for the incorrect rate (approximately $1,500) remained on the card for several days. I wouldn't advise the use of a debit card unless you have several thousand dollars extra in your account to cover situations like this as well as the hold a rental car will put on your card.

9. Re: Visa and Debit Card Debate

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