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Do more and get more from your travel dollars
- TD First Class Travel Visa provides advice on avoiding the unplanned costs of travel -
TORONTO, March 8 /CNW/ - After a vacation spent down south or visiting art galleries in Paris, getting back to reality can be tough, especially when you receive the bill. TD Canada Trust Credit Cards has advice on what you need to know, before you go - so you can get more, do more and avoid being surprised by the unplanned costs of travel.
"While travel is an amazing experience, surprises on your bill are not," says Stacie Pearson, Associate Vice President, TD Canada Trust Credit Cards. "To make sure you aren't shocked by your vacation bills, it's important to do a bit of homework and planning; you will be amazed what a little prep work can do to reduce travel costs."
Take the time to budget
Pearson recommends travellers create a budget before they go. The big ticket items, like flights, are easy to calculate. It's the little costs that often get overlooked. For instance, the TD First Class Travel Visa poll showed that 43% of respondents purchase new items to entertain themselves or their family while in transit, 26% park at the airport and 14% pay for the loss-damage waiver when they rent a car.
Additionally, one of the costs that people sometimes fail to take into account when pricing a trip is the tax. A travel package might be featured at $600 but taxes can often add hundreds of dollars on top of the listed price.
"All of the incidental travel costs can really add up, so you should take them into consideration as part of your travel planning," says Pearson. "One way to reduce costs is to look at the features available on your credit card that can save you money - some cards offer loss-damage protection on rental cars and some let you use travel reward points to pay for airport parking and other travel fees including taxes."
Know the local customs
According to the TD First Class Travel Visa poll many respondents said they are unsure of how much, when, or how to tip when travelling.
Tipping 15-20% might be the norm in Canada, but that is not always the case in other countries. For example, in many European countries, restaurants automatically add a service charge of 10-15% to the bill, which means there is no expectation of additional gratuities.
To save yourself from accidentally over-tipping, research the country you are visiting to see what their guidelines are regarding gratuities. Most travel books and local tourism web sites provide this information.
Make sure you have the right travel rewards card
Forty-three percent of Canadians with travel rewards cards have used or redeemed travel rewards in the past year with 80% of those redemptions being used for airfare. However, 62% of survey respondents say their rewards card does not allow them to pay for taxes or surcharges with rewards points and a further 20% are unsure what costs their card covers.
"Ensure you are getting the most out of your travel rewards program by using a credit card that gives you the freedom to redeem your points for any travel booked with any travel agency or travel provider, the flexibility to redeem your points towards booking any seat at any time and one that covers all of your travel costs, not just airfare and accommodations," says Pearson. "The TD First Class Travel Visa Card, for example, allows you to use your points for all travel costs including taxes and surcharges attached to your airline ticket, airport parking and shuttles, not just the cost of the flight alone. You can even redeem points for those travel extras, such as a snorkeling trip or spa treatment."
Ensure peace of mind
Survey respondents say that trip cancellation insurance (56%), travel medical insurance (48%), car rental insurance (46%) and lost or delayed baggage insurance (44%) are the most important features of a credit card when travelling. Booking your travel on your credit card gives you access to your card's benefits while travelling -- before you go, check that your credit card has all of the features you need so that you have peace of mind knowing that you are automatically covered, from rental damages to lost bags, without incurring additional costs.
About the TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite Card:
The TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite Card gives cardholders the flexibility to get the travel deal they want and to use their TD Points earned to pay for it - whether through their favourite travel agent, online website, tour package provider, a last-minute deal or promotion, or directly through the hotel, airline or cruise line. With no blackout periods or restrictions on airlines, collecting and redeeming points on your TD First Class Travel Card is even more rewarding. And, while many competitor programs require their cardholders to reach point tiers to travel to specified destinations or limit the number of seats available, with the TD First Class Travel Card, redeeming points is simple and easy to understand. For every $1.00 in purchases made using the card, cardholders earn three (3) TD Points and as long as you have a minimum 10,000 TD Points they can be redeemed towards any type of travel, any time to anywhere.
Specifically for Canadians who love to travel, the TD First Class Travel Card offers additional premium features such as:
<< - Travel Medical Insurance - Trip Cancellation & Trip Interruption Insurance - VIP treatment at the world's finest select boutique and luxury hotels and resorts through exclusive hotel privileges - TD Traveller "deal alert" email distributed monthly to existing TD Travel Reward card customers spotlights some great exclusive travel deals that are available to existing cardholders - Exclusive VIP airport lounge access with the new Discounted Priority Pass Lounge Feature. Membership with Priority Pass provides TD First Class Travel cardholders access to over 600 VIP airport lounges (11 in Canadian Airports) in over 300 cities world wide. >>
For more information about the TD First Class Travel Visa Infinite Card visit: http://www.tdfirstclasstravel.com
About the TD First Class Travel Visa Poll:
A total of 1007 online interviews with English and French speaking adult Canadians who have a travel rewards credit card were conducted with Angus Reid Forum panelists between February 16-18, 2010.
About TD Bank Financial Group
The Toronto-Dominion Bank and its subsidiaries are collectively known as TD Bank Financial Group. TD Bank Financial Group is the sixth largest bank in North America by branches and serves more than 18 million customers in four key businesses operating in a number of locations in key financial centres around the globe: Canadian Personal and Commercial Banking, including TD Canada Trust and TD Insurance; Wealth Management, including TD Waterhouse and an investment in TD Ameritrade; U.S. Personal and Commercial Banking, including TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank; and Wholesale Banking, including TD Securities. TD Bank Financial Group also ranks among the world's leading online financial services firms, with more than 6 million online customers. TD Bank Financial Group had CDN$557 billion in assets on October 31, 2009. The Toronto-Dominion Bank trades under the symbol "TD" on the Toronto and New York Stock Exchanges.
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