COSTA MESA, Calif., Dec. 13, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The tickets are purchased, the gifts are wrapped, and itineraries are finalized as consumers get ready for one of the year's busiest travel seasons. freecreditscore.com™ suggests consumers help themselves this year by keeping a watchful eye on holiday travel expenses, reducing the potential for post-holiday financial stress.
"We know that consumers typically spend more this time of year, using their credit cards to help offset the volume of purchases," said Ken Chaplin, senior vice president of marketing for freecreditscore.com. "Because of that, it's even more important to understand the factors that affect a credit score, such as a missed payment or a high debt ratio."
Here are a few guidelines to help keep holiday travelers jolly:
- Rudolph with your nose so bright, notify your bank tonight
Before embarking on a holiday vacation, notify the bank of travel dates to avoid unintentional freezes to accounts. Banks have begun enacting more stringent identity theft protection procedures for their customers, including monitoring for irregular transactions occurring out of city, state or country; larger spending amounts also can trigger a freeze. The last thing any traveler wants to encounter is an issue with his or her credit cards while on the road.
- Give yourself a gift and use credit cards with lower interest rates
Review your credit cards' interest rates and fees before determining which cards should accompany you on your winter escape. Cards that have lower interest rates and that offer travel rewards are ideal to use for big purchases. Travelers who are going abroad for the holidays should be aware of any currency conversion fees and opt for processing purchases using the local currency option to save money and keep their budget on track.
- Planning ahead keeps credit cards "fiscally fit" after the holidays
Many people don't think about losing the extra pounds they gained during the holidays until it's time to make New Year's resolutions. The same can be said for getting finances in shape following holiday spending. Using tools such as online calculators can help determine the estimated amount and rate of paying off credit card debt, saving potentially hundreds of dollars in interest.
Keep your holiday finances in check by monitoring your credit score by enrolling in a product like freecreditscore.com. Consumers can access their credit score at no cost for seven days, while also gaining access to additional finance tools and resources. After seven days, a monthly fee membership is charged.
Additional information about credit and credit scores is available at http://www.freecreditscore.com.
freecreditscore.com is part of a family of online consumer credit reporting sites belonging to ConsumerInfo.com, Inc., an Experian company. ConsumerInfo.com, Inc. was founded in 1995 to give consumers quick, easy and inexpensive access to their credit profile. It is now the leading provider of online consumer credit reports, credit scores, credit monitoring and other credit-related information. ConsumerInfo.com, Inc. provides credit monitoring to its more than 3.1 million members and has delivered more than 20 million credit reports on the Web. As part of the Experian family, it continues to grow its membership base and develop innovative products to help consumers better understand and manage their credit.
Experian® is the leading global information services company, providing data and analytical tools to clients around the world. The Group helps businesses to manage credit risk, prevent fraud, target marketing offers and automate decision making. Experian also helps individuals to check their credit report and credit score, and protect against identity theft.
Experian plc is listed on the London Stock Exchange (EXPN) and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 index. Total revenue for the year ended 31 March 2012 was US$4.5 billion. Experian employs approximately 17,000 people in 44 countries and has its corporate headquarters in Dublin, Ireland, with operational headquarters in Nottingham, UK; California, US; and Sao Paulo, Brazil.
For more information, visit http://www.experianplc.com.
Experian and the Experian marks used herein are service marks or registered trademarks of Experian Information Solutions, Inc. Other product and company names mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners.
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