AAA: Travelers' Checks or Prepaid Visa?

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by MickeyMonstersMom, Jun 24, 2004.

  1. MickeyMonstersMom

    MickeyMonstersMom DIS Veteran

    Apr 26, 2002
    I don't want to use my credit card this trip, so I'm heading to the AAA office tomorrow to pick up either a bunch of travelers' checks or their prepaid Visa card. I haven't used travelers' checks in over 15 years and have no idea how convenient they are at WDW. It seems like the prepaid Visa would be a better choice. However, pre-vacation paranoia makes me look for the "catch" to it.

    Are travelers' checks easy to use at WDW, especially at the restaurants? Is there a significant benefit to using one over the other? Many thanks!
  2. claudia

    claudia Thyroid Cancer Survivor!!

    Aug 18, 1999
    they are accepted just like cash. I use them everytime I go and have never had a problem.....just don't think you can use them to pay at the snack carts.
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  4. DonnaSue

    DonnaSue Mouseketeer

    Apr 11, 2004
    I don't think you can use credit cards at the snack kiosks either - right? So you'll need just a little cash for those. Also, cash for tips.

    Do you have a Disney store near you? You caould always get "Mickey Money". That's always a lot of fun!!!

  5. Julia M

    Julia M DIS Veteran<br><font color =red>not clever, not wi

    Jun 10, 2000
    I would check and find out what happens if you lose a prepaid VISA or it is misplaced.

    The great thing about travelers checks is that they can be replaced (make sure you keep a list of your numbers separate from the checks and update them daily......noting which ones you use)

    I only use Disney dollars if I'm giving them to my kids, so they will save for their trip. They don't have large demoninations, and if they get lost or bad.

  6. hercamore

    hercamore <font color=blue>beagle boy mom<br><font color=tea

    Dec 15, 2000
    Traveler's checks are great. I take a combo of checks, cc's, cash and dd's.

    My dd received a prepaid Visa for xmas and did not like it. She used it at Target and there was a screwup with the amount owed for her purchase.

    so they took too much off her Visa and the Visa Co. takes 5-7 working days to credit the amount back on the card. Target could not put th emoney back on the card after they had taken it off.

    Not good if this were to happen on vacation.

  7. tar heel

    tar heel <font color=royalblue>Where will we get our news i

    Aug 17, 1999
    You can use Travelers Checks at the kiosks if they have enough cash on hand to make change. We had some $100 ones and were unable to use one once when we needed $90 or so back.
  8. fam4jc

    fam4jc DIS Veteran

    Dec 16, 2003
    We used travelers cheques. no problems at all in the resorts or parks or restaurants. Like the other poster said, just be sure you leave the serial numbers with someone at home and keep a copy of them in your suitcase just to be sure you have the numbers is you need them replaced. Are they free through AAA? I was horrified at how expensive they were at my bank. We got ours through american express for free (well $3 priority shipping).

    We didn't use credit cards at all. Too dangerous for me to overspend in the Disney artwork stores!

    Have a great time on your trip.:sunny:
  9. MickeyMonstersMom

    MickeyMonstersMom DIS Veteran

    Apr 26, 2002
    The travelers' checks are free to AAA members - at least, that's what the bank teller told me when I asked her about getting some. My bank offers American Express travelers' checks, but charges a fee, and she offered the tip to save money. I like my bank! :)

    Yikes! on the problems surrounding that prepaid Visa. I don't think I'll risk that. It's good to know travelers' checks are hassle-free, and I appreciate the reminders about recording the serial numbers. Thank you all very much!
  10. toystoryduo

    toystoryduo DIS Veteran

    Jun 13, 2003
    This is a great question! We have been thinking about this for our trip in December: Prepaid Visa Card or Traveler's Checks? When we went to WDW last year, we took DD, cash, and traveler's checks and it worked out well. I think that this time around, we will do the same thing, but will buy a few Prepaid Visa cards for gas money on our way down to WDW and back home as well.

    Have a great trip!!!:jumping1:
  11. etwinchester

    etwinchester DIS Veteran

    Aug 6, 2002
    I used travelers checks but also have a prepaid Wachovia Visa Buxx Card.

    The Visa card has a one-time initial fee and that's it. You don't have to bank at Wachovia to have one. It's actually geared towards teens. You actually sign yourself up as teen if you want the card for yourself or DH. I heard about it on the news around xmas. Parents would give their kids money on a this card to spend for xmas shopping or for older teens in school away from home. You can also get emails if they shop at places they shouldn't (great idea) and you can get monthly statements of their spending habits.

    I thought it would be good idea for me to have one. I put money on it every week (either when I have extra or sometimes on a weekly basis). That is my extra spending money, either xmas shopping or vacations.

    Their is a limit for ATM withdraws, which is $100 a week. I don't use it at an ATM so that doesn't bother me. Also, you can only put up to $1000 on the card as the max amount, which I'll probably never have that much till our next Disney trip.

    Very easy to use and add money to. Great for DH who uses our debit card a lot. I get an email when he purchases things (since he never brings home the slips, they must vanish)...
  12. NALA 24

    NALA 24 Mouseketeer

    Aug 21, 2000
    I vote for the travelers checks from AAA. I always take them on vacation. Make sure you get them in different denominations. I usually take 20's and 50's. Someone above mentioned that they couldn't get change for a 100 travelers check.
  13. mom2alix

    mom2alix <font color=teal>I know he is always on my side<br

    Sep 27, 2003
    If you're staying on property it's also nice to go ahead and put some of your traveller's checks on your room and just use your room key to charge at restaurants, etc. I usually take a little "Disney Dollar" cash for the beverage carts, etc. and then use traveller's checks to keep my room charges current as we go. I love only having to carry one card and a few Disney dollars in the park rather than lugging a purse!:teeth:

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