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Old June 25th, 2007, 07:24 AM
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Default Anyone Use Debit Card Instead Of CC?

Going on Pearl to Alaska July 8th, want to use debit card for on board account. It states they contact bank for pre-authorization, but does NCL put a hold on a fixed amount in that account?

Any experiences/problems you've had using a debit card?

Thanks
Frank
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Old June 25th, 2007, 09:23 AM
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We had problems because I didn't call the bank ahead and raise my daily maximum amount. We received a note in our cabin, so we just used a credit card. If you put everything on a credit card then pay it off when the bill comes in, you can float your money for a couple of weeks or more to be sure your charges are correct. I also read it was safer to use a cc in port in case of identity theft.
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Old June 25th, 2007, 02:59 PM
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i would use a CC we used a debit card and had a ton of problems they take a hold of a certain amount and then they charge but with debit cards the hold is sometimes release later so you can end up having twice the amount accounted for during your cruise(about ten days to two weeks it was straightened out), but it can be embaressing to have to find money when your account is overdrawn by accident....trust me
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Old June 26th, 2007, 10:52 AM
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Would never use debit card...........and use one particular credit card that gives me cash back at the end of the year .instead of points I get cash collected, kind of a nice bonus at the end of the year, always seems like piddly small amounts, but a few major things like paying the cruise, and we get a nice sum back. ( pay with credit card but we have the cash waiting to pay credit card balance, hardly worth it if you dont pay your balance and have to pay interest!)
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Old June 26th, 2007, 02:24 PM
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Something that works great for us is to just use cash or traveller's checks. I don't have to worry about waiting for pending charges to clear from a debit or credit card and it also keeps us from going hogwild and buying a bunch of stuff we really don't really need to spend money on. It is very easy to do and gives you a level of control over what and how you spend your money.
I budget what our tips will be, then $25/day for wine, and another $25-$50 day for incidentals and approximately what I feel we'll spend in the surcharge restuarants and that usually covers it. If we should go over, which we have only done once, we can pay the balance any way we like with credit cards, cash, etc...
I recently took a short trip and when I returned I reviewed my credit card statements and had over $500 in "pending charges" that eventually disappeared over the course of a week or two. Those pending charges were holds put on my card to cover incidentals, damages etc...for hotels, rental cars and stuff and basically tied up $500 of my credit line for nothing.
If you have a huge credit limit then this is not a problem, but if you're like us, we try hard not to run up a lot of credit card charges and it also limits the amount of damage that can be done if someone tries to fraudulently apply charges to the card, since the credit limit isn't that high.
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Old June 27th, 2007, 07:56 AM
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Those are pretty much the same reasons I want to use the debit card.I'm using the debit card for setting up my on board account and using a CC and cash for off the boat purchases. I have a CC with a small limit ($1,000.), don't want to have the temptation to overspend, the debit card I can put more money in it for the ship

Just want to avoid any potential problems people may have had , one person mentioned not having notified the bank to increase daily limit, won't be a problem for mine.

Thanks for all your input?

Frank
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Old June 27th, 2007, 08:01 AM
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Opps, forgot to ask Beenie Weenie, for cash did you have to leave a deposit when checking in? How much?

Thanks
Frank
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Old June 27th, 2007, 10:19 AM
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Frank, yes you need to make a deposit when checking in when using cash or traveler's checks. I know on a 7 day cruise I will spend $210 on tips for two adults and two kids. I will spend at least $125 on wine and adult beverages. I will spend at least $150 on surcharge restaurants on NCL, since there are lots of them to try. So for me a good deposit to start with would be around $500 for the four of us. I know we'll likely spend a few hundred more than that, but you can always add more money to your onboard account if you need to. I almost always spend more out of pocket on NCL than Carnival or RCCL (usually because of the surcharge restaurants) . Except for one Carnival Cruise on the Liberty when I had a really bad spa addiction. However, usually I pay less for my cruise fare on NCL so it all comes out about the same in the end.

Hope that helps!
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Old June 27th, 2007, 05:15 PM
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Thanks beenie weenie, I decided I'll give them travelers checks so I don't have to carry the cash, then I can get back anything I don't use.

Frank
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Old June 27th, 2007, 06:57 PM
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They will refund any unused monies left in your onboard account whether you use cash or Traveller's checks. I like Traveller's Checks though and they can be cashed in at the purser's desk if you need cash too.
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Old July 2nd, 2007, 12:04 PM
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I don't care what anyone else on this board says, ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS call your bank or credit card company & alert them that you are leaving out of the country, what islands you will be at and on what days.

Most people I've seen that have posted, "not my responsibility" to alert anyone. Guess what? You own the card, your responsibility.

I did it for my credit card when I went on a cruise two years ago. On their return reply (not computerized response, a real person!), they thanked me and noted it on my account.

They also said that had I not alerted them I was going to be out of the country, they would have declined all the transactions on the card.

Nobody on here works (that is, nobody has posted they do) for a credit card company or a bank dealing with debit cards. So you never see what goes on behind the scenes with identity theft & such. It's big, we all know it. You can't leave it up to your card company to be responsible for your account, its your account, you are the responsible one.
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