Travel and banking have always shared an important relationship. Bank customers who travel away from home and especially out of the country need access to a different set of features and options than customers doing everyday banking at home. Travellers will need to set up extra security, limitations, or credit limits to protect their accounts and spending ability while on vacation. Many travelling customers are savvy enough to look for great card deals on travel spending while others are incredibly careful about card theft prevention.
As a modern bank, the next natural service is to craft a unique mobile banking app (or extension of your current app) to provide a custom dashboard for use by customers when they are travelling. Your travel banking app will need a faster interface and unique features designed especially for the needs of banking customers away from home. Here are six innovative feature ideas that your travel banking app should include:
One of the best things about modern banks is the ability to red-flag expenditures that are likely to be fraudulent. Charges in another country from where the customer lives, for example, can be immediately flagged and declined. However, fraud protection gets more complicated when customers travel.
One clever way to help customers protect their cards from theft and fraud is to track their itinerary. Create a helpful tool so customers can log where they’re flying to, where they’re staying, and all the big expenditures or withdrawals they plan to make. Customers can use an itinerary to protect their checking and high-limit credit cards from serious losses while traveling simply by coordinating their expenses through an online itinerary.
Expense Alerts and Approvals
Of course, splurging is another major part of travel spending and customers shouldn’t be at risk of card declines when they decide to splash around a little cash on vacation. One way to do this is through coordinated mobile authorisation.
Pre-authorisation can allow a customer to log into their banking app while, say, sitting at a fancy dinner table to authorise their card right before charging the dinner bill. This way, the unscheduled expense is acknowledged to be safe and accepted in a way no card thief could replicate.
Post-authorisation can be used for any larger expenditures that were not scheduled or pre-approved. A quick alert asking “Did you buy this?” will help customers protect their cards and respond instantly in case an unauthorised charge is made.
Exchange Rate Calculators
Whether or not your bank offers international ATMs and branches, you can still provide a helpful service with a simple exchange rate tool. Keep your customers informed of the exchange rate on currencies relevant to their travel plans. With the right integrated APIs, you can even guide your customers to the best nearby exchange location or ATM to serve their travel cash needs.
Travel Checking Accounts
Many traveling customers may prefer to use a separate checking account for their travels in order to keep their primary account completely safe from the usual risks of theft and fraud. Your bank’s travel app can make it easy for customers to set up a separate travel checking account that will only be active for the duration of the customer’s travel plans.
Give customers a secure way to transfer money into their travel checking account, then use only that account for ATM withdrawals and debit expenses on the road. When the card expires after the trip, you can even offer a quick and convenient transfer of the remainder back into the primary checking account.
Quick-Order Travel Cards
You can also make it easy for customers to quickly order a new set of cards with new numbers for the purpose of travel. Your travel banking app can feature a card ordering platform that allows customers to order same-week delivery of their travel checking cards and to set up special credit cards just for travel.
Purpose-built travel credit cards might include a higher emergency spending limit or even a low daily limit for unexploitable pocket money. Traveling with these cards will be safer for customers than traveling with the cards they use at home.
Easy Theft Prevention Controls
A travel banking app should also include simple and responsive controls to help customers both prevent theft and reactivate cards once they are recovered. Let’s say a customer can’t find their high-limit emergency credit card. Your travel banking app can allow them to toggle-off it’s functionality without shutting down the card in a way that will be hard to be reactivated.
If the card is then found under the hotel bed, it can be quickly re-activated to resume its role as the emergency credit line. you might even give more fine-tuned controls for travel cards like an adjustable daily limit, approved/blacklisted spending venues, or even updating the pin on the go.
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