6. Ask questions before you leave
Will your card work where you're going? And is it commonly accepted?
Don't just ask card-issuer customer service. Before you leave, also talk with your travel agent (if you have one) and your hotel, innkeeper or concierge, too.
If you're still using magnetic stripe cards, find out if you'll be able to get by, or if the area is predominantly chip-and-PIN territory, Ridout says.
Bonus travel tip: Even if you primarily use one card at home, it can help to take more than one on a trip, especially from different issuers, says Tiffany. "Not every card is universally accepted." Plus, if one card inadvertently cuts you off or suspends privileges, you have a backup.