When you’re about to travel, the enthusiasm may make you forget some important things. One of them is notifying your bank that you’re about to travel. But since a lot of banks don’t require you to, you might be wondering if this applies to Charles Schwab too.
You don’t necessarily need to notify Charles Schwab of travel. But if you intend to travel overseas, it’s safer to do so. There have been indeed some reports of customers who didn’t have any issue with their cards when they used them abroad without notifying Schwab. But it’s preferable to not risk it because notifying them is way too easy.
In this article, I want to:
- guide you through the process of notifying Schwab,
- help you understand why you need to notify them,
- show you why Schwab is the best choice for traveling, and
- recommend you another bank to use for travel if you don’t want to go with Schwab
Sounds good? Let’s get to it then…
How Do you Notify Charles Schwab of Travel?
First of all, let me guide you through the incredibly easy process of notifying Charles Schwab that you’re going to travel:
- You need to first log in to the Schwab Mobile app.
- When you’re on the home screen, tap the “More” icon; it’s right in the bottom right corner.
- Then, you must find the “Client Service” from the list of options.
- Choose “Travel Notice”
- Simply tap “Add Travel”.
- Now, in the “Notice Entry”, you need to tap “Select Card or Account” and choose one.
- To specify how long you’re going to be away, simply tap the “From” window, enter the date you’ll be leaving, and then go to the “To” window to enter the day you’ll be returning (keep in mind that if your travel duration is longer than 14 days, you must call 888-403-9000.
- At this point, you need to tell Schwab the location that your account or card will show up by tapping “Add destination”. If you are going to travel to multiple locations and find out that you can’t do it online, just give them a call.
- Now, type the country or state you’ll be traveling to and select it.
- At last, tap the “Continue” button and as soon as you check your travel notice details, tap “Submit Travel Notice” and you’re done!
Fairly easy, right? Just keep in mind that you will need to notify them every 30 days if you’ll be gone for more than a month.
Why Do you Need to Notify Charles Schwab of Travel?
If you’re new to this, you may wonder why so many banks (Charles Schwab included) want you to let them know of your travel plans.
It’s simple. Banks can track the location from where you make transactions. If they detect an overseas transaction, they may block your card or account to protect you. This is because they often suspect that it can be an identity theft transaction. So, a fraud department is set up to monitor unusual behavior.
Now, when you let them know you will be traveling to a specific location, they will expect transactions to be made from there. This way, they won’t block your card or account.
Sure, some people claim that they don’t alert Charles Schwab when they travel and have no issue. But why risk it since it’s such an easy and fast process?
Why Is Charles Schwab the Best Option for Traveling?
Besides the fact that Schwab wants to make sure your money is well protected, they also want to save you money.
How? Let’s take a look at some of the perks that choosing Schwab for your travels comes with:
Many banks charge their customers foreign transaction fees when they make any transaction abroad. But Charles Schwab charges nothing at all.
- No ATM Fees
With Schwab, you can use the card to withdraw cash whenever you want without paying a penny.
- Attractive exchange rates
Relying on airports for currency exchanges is the best way to ensure that you lose money. Airport counters are determined to rip you off by giving you the poorest rate possible. Just count on Schwab to give you close-to-market rates. That’s one of the top reasons that the Schwab debit card is so popular among travelers!
Capital One: Another Great Option for Travelers
If for whatever reason you want to avoid dealing with Schwab when traveling, I recommend you going with a Capital One checking account. This bank is as friendly to travelers as Schwab when it comes to fees…
A great benefit with Capital One is that you won’t have to alert them every time you travel. They have a 0$ fraud liability policy which means that you won’t be held liable in case of fraud.
Besides that, Capital One is also a great option for travelers because they, just like Schwab, don’t charge any fee on foreign transactions.
As you can see, even though Schwab does recommend you to notify them before you travel, the process is fairly easy. Now, if you don’t do that, your card or account may be blocked because of the potential danger of identity theft. The choice is up to you, but I recommend you notify them.
Also, it’s good to know that Schwab isn’t only after protecting your money but saving you some money too. Their attractive exchange rates, zero foreign transaction fees, and no ATM transaction charges are what make them the go-to solution for travelers.
At this point, I’d like to thank you for reading this article and ask you to share it with others if you found it useful. And if you have any questions, I want to encourage you to let me know down in the comments.
I’ll talk to you the next time!
Over the past years, I have discovered several tools and products that have helped me tremendously on my path to financial freedom:
P.S.: The links below are affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission at no extra cost to you when you sign up for one of the services. Thank you for your support!
1) Take a look at M1 Finance, my favorite broker. I love how easy it is to invest and maintain my portfolio with them. I can set up automatic transfers, rebalance my portfolio with one click and even borrow up to 35% of my assets at super low interest rates!
2) Fundrise is by far the best way I've found to invest in Real Estate. You can diversify your portfolio by investing in their eREITs or even allocate capital to individual properties (without the hassle of managing tenants!).
3) If you are interested in crypto, check out Coinbase. I've started allocating a small amount of assets to the growing crypto space and Coinbase has just been a breeze to use. Once you register, make sure to also open a Coinbase Pro account to buy crypto at the lowest fees on the market (just 0.1%!).