Carrying money while travelling abroad is always risky and moreover most of us are confused which is the best option. Is it cash/international debit card/credit card or others, as all has its pros and cons. And when it comes to students who are travelling abroad for higher studies and have to manage various expenses such as admission fee, hostel fees etc. This is the reason why there are cards especially for students – travel cards and ISIC Student ID Forex Cards. These cards are best recommended because of following reasons:
- Accepted as identity card for students in most of the countries such as US, UK, and others.
- Card can be used for making payment towards school fees, booking air tickets and others.
- Available in major currencies such as US dollars, Euro, GBP and others. So if student is travelling to US for higher studies then INR can be converted to US dollars and then added in the card.
- SMS & E-mail alert: Real time alert facility. This helps when card gets stolen and then used, as you’ll receive an SMS alert. So that you can report respective bank and block it immediately.
- Security: They have highest level of security and highly preferred over carrying cash.
- Discounts: Since these cards are especially made for students travelling abroad for studies, they offer good discounts on various services such as online and retail shopping, accommodation and many others.
- Funds can be added from anywhere and parents sitting in India can refill the card as per the need.
- Cards also offer insurance cover providing protection for loss of baggage, accident, lost or stolen card.
Who offers these cards for students?
As of now in India, ICICI bank and HDFC bank offers such cards especially made for students going to foreign countries for higher studies. ICICI bank has launched student travel card (that can be used to avail International Student Identity Card (ISIC) membership) whereas HDFC has launched ISIC Student ID ForexPlus card. Both these are pre-paid cards and can be loaded with funds for meeting financial requirements.
Since these cards are especially made for student’s community, documents required are very minimal as follows:
- Passport size photograph
- ID proof
- Date of birth proof
- ID of the college or official letter which states that you are the full time student
- HDFC also requests for form A2 and passport photocopy
These card carry fees for:
- Cross currency
- ATM cash withdrawal
Apart from these charges, HDFC also charges for funds reloading, PIN reissuance, balance inquiry and few more. So before choosing the card, get detailed information on various charges.
If used wisely, these cards can save lot of money due to the discounts offered and various other benefits.