I need to swing by the bank when I get home

I learned an important lesson yesterday.

Last night, I took a walk down Rue St. Denis in Paris and had a reasonably nice dinner at one of the many sandwich stands that litter the street. As I munched on my food, it occurred to me that I only had about 35 Euros in my wallet and that I was likely going to need more to pay for a taxi to the airport. “No problem”, I thought as I recalled passing an ATM earlier in the evening. I made my way back.

I have a long pin on my bank card. Apparently too long. For, while the machine happily accepted my card (and advertised acceptance of the PLUS network), it wouldn’t accept more than five digits from my pin. Oops.

I asked the nice gentleman in the lobby of my hotel if he knew whether or not the taxi might accept a credit card; he didn’t know. It turns out that it didn’t. Crap. I managed–eventually–to get some Euros from the currency exchange in the airport while the cabbie waited.

I’m going to change my password on Monday to something with five digits. The reduced security bothers me a little, but being unable to get cash when I need it bothers me more.

Now… let this be a lesson for all you kids out there…

If you’re planning to travel to far off places, make sure your bank card’s gonna work. And, always bring more than one credit card. And, bring an extra pair of underwear. You never know…

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One Response to I need to swing by the bank when I get home

  1. Julia says:

    …and make sure you’ve brought a pair of pants. Especially if it’s Vegas. The shorter your stay the more important this tip is.When my credit union switched over to online banking, they tried to make it easier by having our account password default be our PIN to our atm card. I’ve probably had the same 4 digit PIN securing my web account until two months ago when I had dinner with a particularly paranoid security expert. (And well, aren’t they all?) I realized how my online newspaper subscription had a better password than my bank account, and changed it pronto. It’s sad, though. The login doesn’t even ask for my password, it asks for my PIN.

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