Subject: Re: travelers check
Hi Chris,

I used my American Airlines Advantage Master Card for future mileage acrual in AA, which is what I used to fly to Nice, and back from Gatwick to DFW (Dallas Texas) between June 18, 2003 - July 29, 2003. Because I knew I was going even before they would make reservations I was able to use the mileage from my classes and instruments purchased prior to my trip. I was told I had to wait until 360 days prior to my flight to book.

I don't understand what the difference between a "check card", "ATM", or "debit card" is either, but I know I could use my ATM as a credit card, which takes the money directly from my checking account as soon as the vendor does their "bookwork", the ATM machines in France took the money out of my checking account immediately, or perhaps overnight. It had been recommended that I not use my ATM, due to the full accessablity to my checking account, for any charges such as food, trinkets, or anything where vendors would have access to my number. The credit card seemed to have disputablity, as I understand the process.

Because I was gone for 6 weeks, and my daughter would not know anything about what I was spending, I did not have a phone, nor call except 1 time in the 6 weeks, and only emailed a couple of times from the fabulously plentiful internet cafe's in France, and found this worked for me very well.

I knew it was going to cost to do the transaction, but so does it to find a Thomas Cooke or American Express exchange and hours determined when I could do the exchange. It was pretty easy to find ATM's even in an open parking lot in a small town north of Nice one Sunday afternoon. I usually only got approximately $200, which wasn't all that much with taxis, or food. I used credit cards for the trains, which is how I traveled the length of France, and hotels.

Frances, I never made a reservation, with the exception of the Chunnel train on Sun. afternoon from EuroDisney, and never had any problem getting a seat, although I was aware with the war and economy last year, there seemed to be fewer people/tourists. Plus it was late July when I was traveling from Nice to Mt. St. Michel, then to EuroDisney, and then London.

I really appreciate all the variety of reports and discussions on this site even though I'm home for a while.

Naomi - Dallas Texas