7 little-known facts about your credit card - No. 4: Your card may be denied abroad

Have a card that is likely to be accepted globally when you are going.

I was eager to take my mother out for lunch or dinner as often as possible when I was visiting family in Russia a few months ago because restaurants were a bonus category that quarter, with the potential to earn 5 percent cash back with my Discover it® Cash Back card (up to $1,500 in purchases per quarter when activated, then 1 percent).

Regrettably, I was unable to use Discover at any of the restaurants I went to in Moscow and Saint Petersburg. My American Express® Gold Card experienced a similar situation. Despite the fact that the card offers 4X points at restaurants "global," Amex's restricted acceptance prevented me from taking advantage of the offer during my trip.

On the other side, my Mastercard and Visa cards worked perfectly everywhere I went. Be warned that some of your cards might not function when you travel abroad. 

Although Visa and Mastercard are reliable options, you might occasionally even need to use cash because it's still the favored way of payment in some locations.

Also, you should inform your credit card provider in advance of any international travel arrangements. Otherwise, the issuer may temporarily revoke the ability to charge due to concerns about fraud.

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