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I have scheduled us for a group tour to Iceland next year. Most of the cost is prepaid, but I plan on having a credit card for emergency use. Are CCs that aren't chip and pin enabled usable? Are US issued cards really chip and pin or only chip and signature?
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We just got back from England/Ireland day before yesterday.

We have a chip in our MC. We still had to sign their receipts. They can use the pin or the strip successfully.

Our friends had the older US magnetic strip only card and had no issues in either country.

TicoHombre
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I meant to mention that we never had to use the PIN on our chip card.
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When I was in Italy some ATMs didn't take CCs unless they were chip and pin enabled. And in Malaysia I had a few vendors not be able to deal with the card. But mostly it's been OK without chip & pin.
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Thank you, I destroyed the PINs issued for our credit cards and was concerned that I would need a PIN.
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When I was in Italy some ATMs didn't take CCs unless they were chip and pin enabled.

I will have to think about whether or not I want to be able to use a CC at an ATM. Along with the normal cash advance fees and high interest rate there would also be foreign transaction fees. All lodging and transportation, and most meals are included in the tour. The need for cash will be very limited.
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Capital One and Chase offer some credit cards with no foreign transaction fees. Some banks reimburse ATM fees when using debit cards at ATMs outside the country.

No matter the tour, I would not assume a very limited need for cash. Things happen.
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No matter the tour, I would not assume a very limited need for cash. Things happen.

It is an estimation of risk. We have travel insurance which includes medical. Transportation, most food, and lodging is prepaid. The recommendation is to take $400 in cash. I no longer buy "stuff" on trips. Things do go wrong, but it will take something significant to need a great deal of cash, at which point the foreign transaction fee will be the least of the problem.
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Take what you are comfortable with, of course. My experience with travel insurance was that it reimbursed me but maybe yours will pay up front. If you end up in a hotel for extra days because of volcano ash or aircraft maintenance, it can eat up a surprising amount of money.

I am making a suggestion based on my travel experience.
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Take what you are comfortable with, of course. My experience with travel insurance was that it reimbursed me but maybe yours will pay up front. If you end up in a hotel for extra days because of volcano ash or aircraft maintenance, it can eat up a surprising amount of money.

Volcano is a possibility. We are taking credit cards to handle emergency situations. I was checking if our existing credit cards would be useable in Europe. My husband has a credit card with chip and pin technology. He will request a new PIN for that card. I routinely destroy credit card PINs because of the fees associated with using them. I probably would pay the fees over using an ATM card out of country.

The second less critical item is if obtaining a new credit card which wouldn't charge foreign transaction fees would be worth it. We aren't expecting to use the credit cards. The fees for a couple of hundred dollars would not be worth maintaining another account. It would take a significant emergency to rack up major foreign transaction fees.
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You're welcome.
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Are US issued cards really chip and pin or only chip and signature?

https://www.creditcardinsider.com/learn/chip-and-signature-c...

Most are chip & signature. A few are chip & pin. In general you shouldn't have any trouble with a swipe card.

Be careful about dynamic currency conversion. When you buy something be sure they don't charge you in USD. It's usually a 3% upcharge for the convenience of having the charge in your home currency. I always check, and ask to be charged in local currency.

BB
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