Too many times we get so very excited about our upcoming travel plans that we forget to do some basic but very important tasks before we go. This actually happened to me, I went on a road trip with friends and once we got to Utah we decided to get some lunch. We ordered, ate and when it was time to pay, our credit cards did not work! What? Why not? Well, our credit card companies detected that the cards are being used in a place away from our usual locations, so as a precaution they placed a hold on our cards to ensure that they were not stolen and used by the wrong person. We had to call and get the cards re-activated. All this could have been prevented with a brief phone call to your credit card or banking institution to let them know that you are going to be leaving town (domestic or international). They will then add a note to your account with your travel dates, so that you can use your cards and they know that it is you. Nowadays, you can also do all of this online. Many banking institutions and credit card companies are allowing you to place the alerts by yourself via their website, so check with your credit/ATM card holder. Try to prevent being stuck in a foreign country/city without any access to money! That could easily ruin your so highly anticipated vacation.