When you set off on your travels, you imagine yourself doing amazing things like roadtripping across Australia, skydiving over pristine waters, or relaxing on a secluded beach in paradise. These activities are things that travellers happily factor into their travel budget. But what about the darker side of travel? Normally people don’t think of all the terrible things that could happen – they could be robbed, or worse –hospitalized. These can be expensive times for the average backpacker and can pretty much break the budget. For those on the road, using a credit card for travel emergencies can make or break a trip. To make sure you are truly financially covered no matter what situation you may get in, you should ensure you have a card that has balance transfer credit card options.
Using credit cards for travel emergencies may be the only way to either replace lost or stolen items, or pay for costly hospital visits or changes in travel plans. Most credit cards will give the user travel insurance-like benefits. You can learn all about what types of travel emergency perks your credit card offers you by doing your research- there are many sites where you can easily compare credit cards to make sure you find a card that will suit your needs.
I’ve heard of cases where travellers may need to get home – because of family emergencies, funerals or for their own health reasons. In this case, those unexpected airfares may not have been factored into the original travel budget – so rather than getting stuck abroad, a traveller can easily use their credit card to ensure they get to where they need to be.
When I was in Melbourne, Australia, I came down with campylobacter enteritis – an awful form of food poisoning that can be life threatening. I ended up spending 5 nights in the hospital – which wound up costing me over $2100 AUD! Thankfully I was using credit cards for travel emergencies only and my credit limit was high enough and the card allowed me certain user protections, which really helped me out in this situation.
Or how about that awful feeling when you get back to your hostel, only to find your stuff has been picked through and important items have been stolen? This may be a case where your credit card can bail you out, and hopefully you can just head down to your local store and replace the items. There would be no worse feeling than finding out your laptop or camera has been stolen and not being able to replace it so you can continue to capture the memories of your travels.
Of course, having and using credit cards for travel emergencies doesn’t alleviate the need for travel insurance – they merely provide you the ability to afford the pricier items or expenses immediately, rather than waiting for the insurance company payout. Before taking off on any sort of travels, ensure you are prepared with appropriate travel insurance that will suit your travel needs. The most important thing any traveller can do – both newbie and experienced travellers – is being prepared – get the travel insurance, acquire the appropriate credit cards (just in case), and of course, remember to have fun and not worry too much about the bad things that can happen.