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  1. Major Annoyance says:

    I am thoroughly convinced… due to horror stories like this one and my own experiences (They once charged me a total of $140 in overdraft and return fees because their automatic bill pay sent my power company $5854 instead of the $58.54 I actually owed)… that Bank of America is one of the most evil entities on earth and that it’s peopled at its upper levels by demonic hellspawn.

    • Dunkelzahn says:

      In some cases, I’m in total agreement. In others I am not.

      The main reason I’m not in total agreement was the time where I was the victim of card skimming. I had practically no hassle disputing the charge, and had my money back within a day. Of course, it was glaringly obvious that I did not withdraw $200 from my account at a Nathan’s in New York…. especially when I live in FL and have never been to NY.

      In other situations, I did think I smelled brimstone entering a branch.

      • tbax929 says:

        I’ve found that with most big banks (I have an account with Wells Fargo) you get better service if you actually go into a branch than you do via the phone. This would not have helped the OP since the nearest branch was in another state than he was at the time. I haven’t had any problems with Wells (I only use them to make cash deposits that I then transfer to my USAA account), but if I do I’m heading to a branch, not calling on the phone.

    • parabola101 says:

      Love the comment… “Bank of America is one of the most evil entities on earth and that it’s peopled at its upper levels by demonic hellspawn.”

      I couldn’t agree more… they do the same thing my and my husband’s accounts even though we contact them via a visit to our branch office, as well as, by phone to let me know we are going out of town or out of the country and we would like access to our money while we are traveling… i finally have devised the most crazy system so that our family can ensure we have access to our funds while traveling. Multiple checking accounts are needed to function these days… I sometimes think the banks pull this kinda crap because there are usually more funds available during times when people travel — placing STUPID holds on their money allows the bank to leverage those funds for longer periods of time… OR am I just being paranoid??

    • Dutchess says:

      Wait, either you or the power company made the error. How is keying in the wrong amount BofAs error?

      What they

      • Garybaldy says:

        How is automatic bill pay keying in the wrong amount. Where did they say they keyed in the wrong amount. Where is the word keying.

      • Major Annoyance says:

        What part of AUTOMATIC BILL PAY did you not understand? I didn’t key in anything.

    • ArcanaJ says:

      When I was in college, I temped at a BofA office over one summer. Having seen how that place worked internally, I am absolutely stunned that the abyss hasn’t yet opened to swallow it whole.

      I’ve worked in a LOT of offices over the years, but theirs stands out as the worst. The internal squabbles alone should be enough to sink the place. I really don’t know how they stay in business.

  2. CherieBerry says:

    The real story here is that the UPS store faxed all your financial information to a random number. I’d be livid!

    • That's Consumer007 to you says:

      That’s why you don’t give your fax to the cross eyed retarded guy standing at the UPS store fax machine. lol. Well, to be fair, customers can’t see him if he is in the back room / have no way of knowing if the normal looking guy is dyslexic, etc.

      So, I guess good idea is to hang out and screen the confirmation page carefully.

    • Aisley says:

      Come on Cherie, get a grip! Yes is true that UPS transposed the numbers (morons), but that only happened because the people at BoA can’t do anything right. And please don’t say anything about the machines making mistakes. Machines just do what they’re told to do, they can’t think on their own. Now that I think about it, neither the people at BoA.

    • justjon says:

      Personally, I would never consider a UPS store for faxing anything. With the numerous Staples stores around, I would just go to a Staples in-store Copy Center where they allow you to fax it yourself.

    • Fineous K. Douchenstein says:

      I’ll add this to the list of effed up things various UPS stores have done.

  3. PunditGuy says:

    Travel with multiple forms of payment? I never go anywhere without at least two cards from two banks, plus maybe my debit/Visa/ATM card — and my wife has an extra card for backup. Best offense, good defense, yada yada.

    That’s not an excuse for BoA’s idiotic behavior, though. I have no problem telling a bank in advance that I’m traveling out of the country in order to avoid such situations, but are we expected to do that now for domestic travel?

    There must be actuaries who can prove that this auto-fraud detection on the part of banks actually leads to less fraud. Surely. Because why would they inconvenience their customers otherwise?

    • That's Consumer007 to you says:

      EXACTLY! Lol / high 5.

      “I’m sorry, but for your protection, you are not allowed to use your card any more, for no reason, with no notice, and at our sole discretion. Thank you.”

    • Charmander says:

      Absolutely always travel with more than one form of payment. My husband found out the hard way – one of his credit cards was canceled while he was on a business trip in Germany last year. He had a backup – but it would have been a disaster if he hadn’t had that second credit card with him.

  4. infamousjre says:

    This is why you should always call your credit card company before you travel:

    • Corporate_guy says:

      Do you read the consumerist? That does absolutely nothing. The holding and disabling of accounts is automated. A note won’t prevent it. And a note doesn’t really do much, they will still most likely require you to do something stupid like drive to a branch to unlock the account.

      • infamousjre says:

        I dunno. I’ve never had trouble when I called ahead, but have when I didn’t think to.

        • That's Consumer007 to you says:

          Actually I can verify calling ahead doesn’t work either. I had a huge car repair expense at Discount Tire when all 4 of my tires and rims were stolen. I got an estimate, called ahead to CRAPitol One from home and MADE SURE (talked to an agent) that there was more than enough balance on the card.

          Sure enough, attempted purchase flagged a “fraud alert” because the amount was too high and I hadn’t used the card recently, and even worse, when I called from the store, they wouldn’t release it.

          Kudos to the Discount Tire guys for not making fun of me while I let Crapitol One have it on the phone. They must see that all the time…

      • supercereal says:

        Three of four stories about how this doesn’t work do little to counter-act the millions of other people who have had success doing it. The problem with you, like most, is that you take everything on this site as gospel, and cannot fathom a world outside of this business-hating bubble.

        • mythago says:

          What “millions of people” are these? Do you really think “millions of people” call their bank before they travel?

    • Ragman says:

      In my personal experience, using the same CC for both trips, I found that not making hotel reservations ended up with a fraud hold getting placed on my card on the second night of the trip. The next time I traveled like that (2 years later) I made reservations and didn’t have any issues on a five day trip.

      Always, always, ALWAYS carry at least TWO different credit cards on any trip. If the only thing you’re carrying is a debit card, you’re taking a big risk like the OP did. (Not saying he’s at fault, but he could have better prepared)

    • ARP says:

      This rarely works. The fraud detection system is automated and so a note to your account often doesn’t work (at least in BoA’s case). Much depends on their system. Some systems are fairly specific. Meaning, you tell them where you’re going and when you’ll be there and they can set up the system to allow charges during that window. Other systems are more broad and simply look for increased spending outside of where you live. You may be successful at getting them to increase the “tolerance” of their system. Meaning that it will require heavy usage in a foreign country before the fraud system is triggered.

    • nl86 says:

      i just went away on a business trip to India and called AMEX (personal card) before the trip to tell them I was going to India. the AMEX rep actually told me NOT to call in the future before traveling, because their card system automatically detects moves and that it is basically a waste of my time to alert them before the trip.

  5. Tim says:

    I would get this sorted out just enough to close the account, then take my business to another bank.

    I’m all for security, personally, after a recent brush with ATM skimming. But BofA actually screwed this up to the point that the security measures that are meant to protect the customer are making it so that he can’t access his account.

  6. tbax929 says:

    I had a similar experience with B of A when I moved from PA to AZ. I was traveling across the country, using my debit card for gas, hotel, etc., and everything was fine. Then when I got to AZ, I went to a furniture store to furnish my apartment, and my card was declined. I had thousands of dollars still in my account but couldn’t use my card. They told me there were multiple transactions in multiple states, and that was a red flag. Because, apparently, nobody else ever travels cross-country in a car. Thankfully, I was able to answer their inane security questions correctly, and they lifted the hold within an hour or so. But I was livid.

    On top of that, since I’d opened my account online while still in PA (I had to switch to a bank that was out here before I moved here), the folks at the branches in AZ had a hard time even finding it anytime I went into a branch. They’d ask me where I opened the account, and I’d say “Pennsylvania”. The someone told me that the correct answer is that I opened it in Virginia, since that’s where the online accounts were processed. So I had to remember when they asked me where the account was opened to always say “Virginia”.

    Needless to say, I stopped banking with B of A shortly after I moved here.

    • Dont lump me into your 99%! says:

      I had the exact same problem when I lived in Nashville. Opened the account online, never visited a branch in Nashville (because I moved shortly after getting the welcome kit). When I came back to Michigan, there was no BoA around here, until they bought lasalle bank. But even then, just to deposit money, it would take like 45 minutes.

    • chocolate1234 says:

      Did you notify B of A about your cross-country trip? Any bank will lock out a debit card if they aren’t notified of your travel plans, simply because multiple transactions out of your normal area is a huge red flag.

  7. buttcat says:

    I think the OP needs to find out who that other fax number belongs to so he can make sure his financial and private information is destroyed.

    • tbax929 says:

      That’s what I would do. Since the fax went through, clearly the number was to another fax machine and not a voice number.

      • scoosdad says:

        Knowing which two digits were transposed would go a long way towards giving the OP some comfort. If it was just the last two of a ten digit number, and a fax machine did answer it, there’s a pretty good chance that machine was inside BofA’s phone system somewhere and not a random fax machine somewhere else. BofA probably “owns” most of the numbers in the exchange prefix that the call went to.

        Don’t you think the chances that transposing two other digits somewhere else in the number that results in a fax machine answering, and not a voice, it would be astronomically slim?

  8. tz says:

    First, switch to a credit union. They have credit and debit cards on good terms and won’t give you this kind of hassle.

    (I have to wonder if this actually stops much fraud, or is more “security theatre”). I did get calls from my credit union, but it was automated and it was “did you approve these last 5 transactions”, which I did and all from memory since it was usually when I stopped to shop in a destination city.

    Second, always have a stash of cash – get a money-belt and fold up some $100 bills just for this kind of emergency, hide some in your keyring or wallet. Enough to get you back home or to your destination if this happens in the middle of the trip. Not with the credit/debit cards – what would have happened if it was just lost or stolen?

    • tbax929 says:

      I’d correct that to: “Switch to a good credit union that comes recommended by others”. Some credit unions are just as bad as banks.

      • tz says:

        Agreed – some are bad, and there are some, perhaps many good banks. Finding them is hard, so ask.

      • Brunette Bookworm says:

        Or a local bank that’s recommended by people. I happen to love my bank. They’ve been helpful with any problems that have happened (like the one time my student loan payment was cashed by Sallie Mae for 1050.00 instead of the 105.00 I wrote on the check). Sure, they don’t have their brand of ATMs everywhere, but they have fewer fees on things than big banks. Just talk to friends and get recommendations of a good bank or credit union.

    • AustinTXProgrammer says:

      My credit union has good customer service, but then so does my mega bank and my small bank. I get the best credit card terms from the mega bank, but they have screwed so much other stuff up that I hate them (despite the friendly in branch customer service). My credit union always does things right, they will credit overdrafts if I can prove they were another banks mistake (get them to reverse the ACH transaction, which I really think is just run another), but their terms on anything but a car loan are just bad.

      My small town bank has made a comical error, but there terms have been the best and they never charged me for the error (A human saw it and the overdraft wasn’t charged automatically) I made a deposit 5x bigger than my balance. I also used my debit card for several smallish tranactions (5-10% of balance before deposit). They put a hold (expected) on my deposit in the morning, and didn’t post the deposit until that evening, causing my account available balance to go 5 digits into the red (the hold was for 7 business days, fine, but the first business day there was no deposit to offset it) . Their checking terms are the best (5% APR, now 4.25%, but still good) so I put up with them anyways. I saved the NSF letter because I find it funny.

    • pot_roast says:

      I have to agree with the other replies – there’s no guarantee a credit union would be any better, and i’m sick of people saying this. :|

      My current credit union has the absolute WORST ‘security questions.’ If it doesn’t recognize your computer, it will ask you how much money is in one of your accounts. Ridiculous, because the reason that I’m logging in is to see how much is in my &$@ account!

  9. ianmac47 says:

    Last week I called up Bank of America to let them know I would be leaving the country. After 35 minutes and the fifth associate, I was informed that there was now a temporary hold on my card. Three hours earlier I had made a deposit at an ATM. The associate was unable to identify why there was a hold, when in the last three hours the hold had been placed, and that lifting the hold required a trip to a local branch to sort things out.

    At the branch, I told a bank clerk the problem. She called up the Bank of America hotline and explained the problem. The associate offered her sympathies and after the clerk verified who I was, the associate told us both that her computer had crashed. In fact, all the computers at the call center were crashing just then and that I should call back in about an hour.

    The bank branch clerk provided me with a phone number to call. On my way back to my office I stopped at a Chase branch and inquired about opening an account. An hour later I was a nascent Chase bank account holder. After leaving the branch, I got a phone call from the woman she just spoke to. The system, she said, had me down for a coupon worth $100 when I opened a new account. She was calling to inform me that she had applied the coupon to my account even though I hadn’t brought the coupon with me, and even though I had lost the physical coupon and I hadn’t said anything about the coupon to her.

    So on the same day Bank of America turned off access to my ATM card for some nebulous reason that traveling to a physical branch couldn’t resolve, Chase was giving me free money. On my next visit to a Bank of America branch, I resolved my ATM card issue with the assistance of a bank clerk; I also closed one of my accounts, and after my outstanding checks clear, will close the other Bank of America account.

    • That's Consumer007 to you says:

      That’s nice, and true, I currently (knock on wood) am a new Chase customer, happy with my banker too. However, to be fair, there are plenty of Chase horror stories too.

      Bottom line, ANY major bank can do crap like this, and while BOA is certainly evil, none of them are perfect or immune to security melodrama theater.

      • trujunglist says:


        I only laugh because you don’t know the horrors of Chase.

        For example, did you know that B of A allows seamless deposits from other states (i.e. not the state you opened in), but if you tried the same thing at Chase, your money would be lost forever? I found that out the hard way. Chase is really the same exact piece of shit as B of A, it’s just a different color.

        • ianmac47 says:

          And if and when Chase hassles me, I’ll walk away from them as well. For now though, there is a Chase branded ATM in every Duane Reade and on every other street corner. The point is, a brand should work to earn my loyalty, I shouldn’t have to work to be loyal to a brand.

    • Rob says:

      Also keep in mind that the $100 coupon credited to your Chase account will be reported as interest income to the IRS and will have to be reported on your 2009 tax return as such.

  10. That's Consumer007 to you says:

    Bank of America is evil and wrong and deserves to lose business because of this.

    And this is advice…NOT blame the consumer, who I agree with:

    1. Don’t ever travel with only one card. Have 2 different bank’s cards, with money in each institution to cover costs, and 2 credit cards, that way you should be covered regardless.

    2. Every few months contact every bank and credit card company and make sure you pass the authentication. If you don’t pass any, FIX IT BEFORE you travel.

  11. almightytora says:

    Your main problem is that you’re dealing with Bank of America.

    Sort out the problem, close both accounts, and go to another bank.

  12. barbcole says:

    I see the “fax? why not email?” a lot. There are two big reasons why that’s how it currently works:

    1- While call centers in general tend to completely restrict a computer from accessing the internet to prevent inappropriate use by employees, in the case of financial institutions they absolutely do not want employees to be able to send any information any place.

    For underwriting/insurance and licensing concerns, the current operating procedure is to lock them down to prevent unauthorized sharing.

    The only types of call centers more restricted are dealing with health information covered by HIPPA.

    It’s very easy to control a fax (or computer fax) so it’s incoming only, tracked and logged, and somewhat secure that only the appropriate people can read it (if you send to the correct number, that is) and nothing can go out that isn’t approved.

    2- Facsimile Transmission has legal standing and established recognition. In most cases it has been legally established that it can be considered the same as the original.

    It will stand up in court, or at least the cases where there are exceptions are fully flushed out and legal counsel knows about them.

    Scanning a document and emailing it does not have the same level of legal standing. The law has not caught up to present technical ability.

    This is why to this day you see some of the most technologically advanced companies using FAX or courier to send some of their most important documents (scanning and faxing by computer still counts as fax legally, so that’s ok).

  13. Rayon Fog says:

    B of A’s arbitrary hold practices are indeed frustrating, but there is an automated number that allows you to quickly remove any security holds that have been placed on your account.

    In fact, LW chastises B of A for not using email, but when B of A places a security hold on an account, they send the account holder an email with the above-mentioned automated call-in number clearly included in bold print! You may have to sign up for this email service (I can’t recall if I did), but every time B of A places a security hold on my account, I get an email within minutes.

    I hate B of A as much as anyone, but it seems like LW didn’t exercise all of his options, either before the trip or after the hold was placed.

    Also, regarding the fax… what are the chances that UPS transposed 2 numbers in the fax number, and the resulting number also happened to be a fax?

    • Ohgodyoudevil says:

      “every time B of A places a security hold on my account”
      umm, how often does your bank freeze your account? you might want to reexamine your financial management.

      • Rayon Fog says:

        For starters, it happens almost every time I go out of country, which is half a dozen times a year or so. And often times, even though I called ahead to tell them I’ll be overseas and which countries I’ll be visiting, my itinerary changes and then B of A freaks out and holds the account when I arrive in a new country. Or, how about when I’m checking out of a hotel in Italy, which happens frequently. For some reason, many Italian hotels can’t do 3rd-party incidentals (cars, trains, etc) and room charges on the same bill, so they have to run the card twice. That one trips up B of A every time because they assume some kind of fraudulent activity is going on. Or, how about when I’m traveling overseas with my wife and we purchase an upgrade between Rome and Munich. The airline has to process each upgrade as a separate transaction, which for reasons stated above, also puts B of A’s knickers in a twist.

        It has nothing to do with my financial management, which is sound. But thanks for jumping to conclusions anyway.

        • Brunette Bookworm says:

          Unless it’s a business account that you can’t change for some reason, I’d think about a different bank. For them to cause you that much hassle, that often is ridiculous.

          • Rayon Fog says:

            I’ve thought about it often! I just need to find the time to wind everything down with them. I have 3 business accounts, 2 personal accounts, 2 credit cards and a brokerage account with them. It will take a fair amount of work.

            City National will probably soon be getting back my business. I’m really tired of B of A, and have been for several years. However, I’m not sure how I feel about B of A’s fraud-protection practices. I’ve only been a victim of fraud once with them, so I have to wonder whether some of these policies actually working. Yeah it sucks when one of my cards gets shut down, but I always carry multiple forms of payment, and they do make their hold-lifting procedure about as painless as can be expected. They even have a collect call-in number for when I am overseas.

        • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

          i jut find myself envious of your frequent trips to italy.

    • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

      if it was the last two numbers in the fax number it may have been part of a block of numbers and may still have ended up going to a BoA fax machine, just not the right one. I know my company has half a dozen fax numbers and they are contiguous

  14. wcnghj says:

    Don’t leave town with one method of payment?

  15. Tim says:

    Sometimes I actually wish my bank would do this. I traveled to Hawaii this summer and had absolutely no problems with any of my cards. What if someone had stolen my information and done that?

    Also, sometimes I wish the banks’ systems would put up red flags for other things. For example, I never take out more than $100 at a time from an ATM, and I use the ATM once a week at maximum (usually less). So three withdraws in a row totaling $900, then another withdraw the next day for $500 should be suspicious. But oh, it was in a town adjacent to mine, so there’s no reason to think it might be theft. None at all. (Still under “investigation,” but most likely an ATM skimmer.)

  16. stuporglue says:

    This is why I carry two credit cards from different financial institutions. Any bank can make a mistake, even if they deal with it well, it is handy to be able to use your other card to get out of the situation.

  17. Quake 'n' Shake says:

    What’s going on with BofA?
    I was in Vegas last week and while waiting to redeem a video poker ticket, I was in line with a guy who wanted to use the ATM (Ticket Redemption Machines do extra duty as ATM’s and bill breakers in some casinos). He was utterly incensed with BofA because his debit/ATM card would not work, despite (according to him) BofA’s insistence that everything was peachy with his card. I really didn’t chat with him too long, as he was approaching that “so angry as to become irrational” stage. Though I did suggest he change banks when he gets home if he’s so unhappy with Bank of America.

  18. KCBassCadet says:

    I tried to buy a $1800 camera from Best Buy but was getting “declined” even though I knew I had plenty of funds available.

    BoA immediately called my cell phone to ask to speak to me. I asked them why my card had been declined. I was told that my purchase raised a flag, and that it was seen as “Suspicious Activity”. This was at a retailer in my home city that sells many expensive items. The BoA rep apologized and told me this was for my “protection” and that they would immediately remove the hold on my account.

    I was pretty pissed. I didn’t ask my bank for this protection, and I am not legally responsible for purchased made with my card without my consent. The banks know this, they know THEY are the ones who are ultimately responsible for footing the bill in such cases….so this isn’t protection for the consumer, it’s protection for THEM.

    And like the people in this story, Bank of America also has in the past screwed up my security questions. They clearly do not value the importance of such matters.

  19. sheriadoc says:

    BofA seems to do these lockdowns more often nowdays. The last was a $175 purchase that I made from Swavorski. Not to mention I had purchased a $700 airplane ticket not too long before with no problems whatsoever. I’ve come to just call the phone number without bothering to try to confirm the purchases online. It once asked me for my mother’s maiden name, and then said it was wrong. I don’t even recall providing my mother’s maiden name. And when you do it over the phone, you have the pleasure of confirming the big purchase in question, along with all the mundane ones. Like $6 sandwiches, Netflix subscriptions, and take-out pizza. I wouldn’t mind, but they always want to confirm several stupid purchases like this.

  20. NarcolepticGirl says:

    I think I may be the only person who has never had a problem with Bank of America. I always rec’d excellent customer service, online banking is 10x more up-to-date than the credit union I belong to, great banking hours, tons of ATMS and I have always been able to get overdraft fees removed.

    I guess I was just lucky.
    Now I belong to an “awesome” credit union with slow deposits, few ATMS, and customer service that takes forever.

  21. thisistobehelpful says:

    Really? No BoA within 100 miles of SLC? I find that freaking amazing. I’m actually dropjawed at that. Well 100 miles is less than a tank of gas in most vehicles. Guess borrow the money for that and go. It’s a pain but unless someone’s willing to lend you the complete travel costs of going back home and you don’t have another card that sounds like what it’s going to have to be.

  22. Bog says:

    Several years ago, Bank of America really pissed me off too. They ended up charging me >$500.00 in service charges and interest on top of the $4500.00 in charges against the card. It took a few months to fix it correctly and get my money back. What they did was link my card to someone else’s (a total stranger’s) checking account overdraft protection.

    The stranger must have figured that she wasn’t bouncing her checks (all I could find out was that it was a female) so she kept writing them. I then got my bill. Frak! I had to make several calls over a few days. They then said I had to go to a branch. That branch would not help me, they said I had to go to the branch where the checking account was opened, dozens of miles away.

    How they could my credit card to someone else’s checking account? I don’t know.

    I showed the statement to the bank manager – and she said that “That’s from your guaranteed overdraft protection for your checking account.” I told her that I did not have overdraft protection to which she replied that I must. I then told her that I don’t have a checking account. She turned pale. This manager was able to fix that, but next month a bunch of interest was charged. I had to go back to fix that. A few more of those charges with fees trickled in which required more trips.

  23. roscoe says:

    This is what bailed out BOA did to me. I signed up for paperless notification of statements by email. One month they told me I was late and would be charged a late fee and my rate would go up. I checked the records on their site and they failed to send me the notice I signed up for. And some over officious jerk wouldn’t reverse the charge or interest rate. I called a customer rep and explained the situation and she put a reversal on it. I wrote the jerk back and told him his decision had been nullified. He still maintained it was my responsibility to which I told him I wouldn’t tell him he had his head up his ass. BOA sucks.

  24. gspdark1 says:

    I agree that when it comes to banks, you have to take the lesser of two evils. Where I live in NYC, B of A is the least of all evils. Citi and Chase charge exorbitant service fees on people like me who don’t carry a minimum monthly balance, etc.
    Anyway, I got a hold on my account two weeks ago because I paid my ATT bill and bought a new phone right at the ATT store. I got an email and made a few phone calls and that was that. While I was at it, I told them to note my account that I was traveling to Wisconsin (where there are no B of A’s). No problems, but I still have 2 credit cards with me.

  25. blue_muse says:

    Guaranty Bank did the same thing to us here in Wisconsin. I saved for our vacation, put the money in our checking account, and then we traveled to Montana. After a single transaction, the card would not work. I was told that security had put a hold on my account and I would need to go to a branch to resolve the issue. Since there were no branches close by, I had to use my credit card for the rest of the vacation.

    I was later told I should have called and told them I was going on vacation. My credit union never did stuff like this.

  26. theblackdog says:

    What would I do? Fire Bank of America as my bank immediately, they’ve already locked me out anyway.

  27. FrankenPC says:

    I learned a LONG time ago to contact every CC provider I’m taking with me on vacation and notifying them when I’m leaving and coming back. That keeps them off your back.