Here’s an easy way for pensioners to save money on holidays
RECENTLY, a reader emailed with a problem that is becoming increasingly common for retirees.
She and her partner had long had a credit card with the principal card in his name, and her card held as a supplementary card.
She had read my columns recommending both partners have a card in their own names because if a couple are travelling and the primary card or the supplementary card is lost, both cards are cancelled.
This could be particularly embarrassing if you are travelling overseas.
Her problem was that no bank would give her a credit card. She was 70, with no income of her own – the couple were living on his superannuation through an account-based pension.
They did not get any age pension because they had substantial assets, but their taxable income was zero.
The solution was to get a debit card.
This does not require any credit application because the card simply allows you to access the funds you hold in the bank account that is attached to the card.
In my experience the perfect card for this is an ING Direct Orange Everyday account, which I have been using for years.
This card has no fees, and provided you deposit at least $1000 every month all withdrawals from ATMS in Australia, and throughout the world are free of fees.
I am writing this from London, and I have been using this card for the entire trip.
The rate is extremely competitive, and a particular feature is the app on your phone which enables you to keep track of the balance.
It’s lightning fast – transactions are usually on the app within a minute of purchase.
The app also shows the fees being charged by the overseas banks which ING refund immediately.
Most of these are more than two dollars with some over $10.
My ING card has become one of my favourite travel tools.
This card doesn’t cost money, it saves it.
Her problem was that no bank give her a credit card.