Are you about to embark on an international trip soon?
If so, you are probably very excited about all of the new things you are going to see and experience. You’re probably thinking about what to pack, what you’re going to do when you get there, and how much money you’re going to need to budget.
But, in the midst of all of this excitement and planning, there is one thing you absolutely can’t forget to do- notify your bank about your trip abroad. This way, your bank won’t be surprised when they see that unusual credit card charge for a restaurant in Costa Rica.
But, what exactly do you need to do to make sure your bank knows you’re going to be traveling abroad?
Each bank actually has a unique process for setting travel notices.
Check out this guide to learn how to set a Chase travel notice, as well as how to set a travel notice for every other card.
What is a Travel Notice?
Before we dive into how to set a travel notice for your bank, let’s go over a little background information.
As we all know, fraud is a major issue in today’s technological world. In fact, around 31.8 million Americans had their credit card breached in 2014. That’s about 10 percent of the population!
Banks are definitely aware of the fraud issues that happen in today’s world, and they want to do everything they can to help you avoid credit card. Therefore, they constantly monitor your spending activity.
When they notice a suspicious purchase- either from a new location or in an unusual amount- they may decline the transaction. While this may seem like a huge pain to some, declining the transaction is for your protection.
Therefore, this is why it’s very important to notify your bank before you leave the country.
Even if you’re going to a country that you’ve traveled to before, unless you spend the majority of your time in this country, your bank will likely see this activity as suspicious. This is especially the case for countries where fraud is a major issue.
Also, let’s not forget that calling your bank while you’re on vacation is about the last thing you want to do.
Therefore, it’s very important to be aware of the steps you need to take to notify your bank that you are leaving the country.
How to Set Up a Travel Notice for the Major Banks in the US
Unfortunately, we won’t be able to give you a breakdown of how to set up a travel notice for every single bank in the US, as there are hundreds.
Therefore, if you bank locally, you’ll either need to call your bank or visit them in-person to set up your travel notice.
Now, let’s dive into what you need to do to set up a travel notice for Chase as well as the other major banks across America.
Chase Travel Notice
Chase is one of the most favored banks among globetrotters. This is due to the fact that it has an abundant amount of travel perks as well as the fact that it’s a partner of the Visa network- which means your credit card is accepted in almost all places worldwide.
For Chase credit cards, you can set up your travel notice a year in advance for credit cards (for those of you who really love to plan ahead) and 14 days ahead of time for debit cards.
It’s important to note that for Chase as well as for all banks, it’s very important to set up a travel notice for both of your cards, even if you only plan to use one of them.
When on vacation, you never know what might happen. You could easily lose a card or have it stolen. Setting up a notice on both of your cards could save you in the event that something happens with one of the cards.
Also, if you’re not entirely sure how long you’re going to be traveling for, then don’t be afraid to pick a wide date range. Chase allows you to set a travel notification that spans as long as a year, so take advantage of this if you need to.
However, make sure you remove the travel notification once you return home.
Setting Up the Travel Notice on Your Desktop
Now that you know all that, let’s dive into what you need to do to set it up. Note: these are the directions for setting up your travel notice on your desktop. We’ll go over how to set up a travel notice on your mobile device after this.
Step 1: Log in to your Chase account online.
Step 2: Once you are logged in, click on the menu button in the upper left-hand corner.
Step 3: Then, click the drop-down menu and click Profile and Settings.
Step 4: Scroll down this menu until you find the More Settings category. Click on this and then click on Travel.
Step 5: From there, you will select debit or credit card, and then hit Update.
Step 6: Enter your dates of departure, your return date, (again, be generous with the travel dates if you aren’t sure when you’ll be back) and your destinations.
If you are going on a long backpacking trip and aren’t exactly sure of all the countries you’ll be hitting, the best thing to do is to update your travel notice later on once your itinerary becomes clearer.
If you’re not planning to bring your computer with you and aren’t sure if you’ll have access to one, you can call Chase at 1-302-594-8200.
Step 7: You will see a note confirming your travel notice.
And that’s it! Now you’re officially ready to explore the world!
Setting Up Your Chase Travel Notice on the Mobile App
For those of you who wish to set up your Chase travel notice on your mobile device, here’s what you need to do:
Step 1: Sign into your Chase mobile account. Click on the profile icon (looks like a little person) in the upper righthand corner.
Step 2: At the top of the screen, click on My Settings.
Step 3: Scroll down until you see More Settings and click on that. Then click on Travel.
Step 4: Go to the credit/debit card section and then click Update.
Step 5: A list of all of your Chase credit cards will appear. Click on the ones you plan to use for traveling (remember, it’s smart to set notifications for at least two just in case of emergencies). Then, enter your dates of departure and return, as well as your travel destinations.
Step 6: Click Save.
Step 7: Just as before, you will see a note that confirms your travel notification. It’s smart to take a picture of this image or to screenshot it, just in case.
Bank of America
Now, let’s talk about how to set up a travel notice with one of the other titans of the banking industry: Bank of America.
Like Chase, Bank of America is another preferred bank for travelers. Bank of America has a very enticing travel rewards program that includes no annual fees, no foreign transaction fees, and a low introductory APR.
Bank of American allows you to set up your travel notices 60 days ahead of time. The travel notice can then last up to 90 days, at which point you will need to update it if you plan to travel longer.
To set up your travel notice with Bank of America, here’s what you need to do:
Step 1: Log in to your Bank of American account.
Step 2: Once logged in, go to the menu at the top right and click on the Help and Support icon.
Step 3: A drop-down menu will appear, and you’ll want to click on the option that says Set Travel Notice.
Step 4: Add your travel dates and destinations. Bank of American even gives you the option to add in extra details about your trip, so if you’ve got a long layover scheduled, be sure to mention that too.
Now you are ready to travel with your Bank of America cards!
Are you a member of Wells Fargo Bank? If so, you have a few different options of notifying them about your travel plans.
You can either log in to your online account on your desktop, use the mobile app, or, call the number on the back of your card.
If you choose to notify Wells Fargo by using your desktop, here’s what you need to do:
Step 1: Log in to your online account.
Step 2: Go to the Accounts dropdown menu and click on Manage Cards.
Step 3: Next, click on Manage Travel Plans. Just as you do with other issuers, enter your dates of travel as well as any destinations you plan to travel to.
Also, just a quick note here: When we say enter travel destinations, we don’t mean that you have to enter every city and town you plan to travel to. Entering the country is just fine.
And you’re done!
For members of Citi Bank, here’s what you need to do:
Step 1: Log in to your account online.
Step 2: Find the services button in the menu, and hover over it. Then click on the Travel Services button.
Step 3: Next, select Manage Travel Notices. You will do this before you select the card that you want to set notices for.
Note: Unlike other banks, Citi Bank requires that you set up a different notice for each card you plan to travel with. Therefore, that means you will need to repeat this process for each card you choose to use overseas.
Step 4: Fill out the information regarding your travel dates and destinations.
You’re officially ready to take off!
It may seem weird to some that we’ve included Charles Schwab on this list. After all, isn’t Charles Schwab a brokerage firm?
While Charles Schwab probably isn’t the first financial institution that comes to mind for the average citizen, many seasoned travelers know a little secret that makes Charles Schwab a great option for globetrotters.
Charles Schwab reimburses all of your ATM fees around the world. That’s right- every single one of them.
For some, this may not seem like a major perk. But, for those who travel extensively, you know how quickly those ATM fees can add up and what a pain it can be to try and figure out the exact amount of cash you need to take out in each destination.
So, here’s how you set up a travel notification with Charles Schwab:
Step 1: Log in to your account online. It’s best to do this on your desktop computer.
Step 2: Hover over the Services menu at the top.
Step 3: Under Account Servicing, click on Travel Notices.
Step 4: Enter the dates and destinations of your travel. The Charles Schwab travel notice lasts for 60 days, so be sure to update if you plan to travel for a longer period of time.
And that’s it for setting up a travel notice with Charles Schwab!
Last but not least, let’s talk about what you need to do if you’re an American Express cardholder.
Well, we’ve got a nice surprise for you. You actually don’t need to set up a travel notice for your Amex card.
On their website, American Express says that they have leading fraud detection capabilities that make it unnecessary for you to set up travel notices when you leave the country.
However, American Express does recommend that you update your contact information before your travels, as this will make it easy for them to contact you in case any issues arise.
Also, it’s important to note that American Express cards are not widely accepted worldwide. Therefore, it’s a good idea to have a backup card with either Visa or Mastercard.
Chase Travel Notice and More: Now You’re Ready for Your Trip!
As you can see, setting up a Chase travel notice (as well as notices for other banks) is not a difficult process.
And, if you have any problems setting up your travel notice, you can always call your bank for some guidance.
If you have any questions about these steps, please also don’t hesitate to drop us a comment below.
And, be sure to check out our list of the best travel credit cards. Here are some other articles you might find helpful:
The pros and cons of the Delta Skymiles American Express card
Costco Citi Card review
The ten worst credit card mistakes a person can make
Credit cards 101 – the pros and cons of balance transfer cards