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Having a Backup Credit Card?
Old 07-25-2018, 08:56 AM   #1
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Having a Backup Credit Card?

I saw a $5 charge I didn't recognize on my CC bill, and reported it. Now we're without a card for a week.

Once that happened when on a trip.

It makes me think it would be good to have a second card that we use only in that situation.

Will the CC company allow you to have two cards for the same account?

Anyone do that?
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Old 07-25-2018, 09:01 AM   #2
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You can have an additional member card on most accounts (like for a spouse), so presumably you could do something like that with some banks, depending if they require a unique SSN or not for the supp. (and then you just carry them both if you don't put it in the spouse's name).

Or you could just have a 2nd cc that you hardly use with another account.

A good issuer will overnight you that replacement at no fee, certainly if you ask. It's dumb not to - they are missing out on you using their product for days on end, and the odds that you use something else (debit, other CC) and then stick with that after you get there's back - too high to risk if they value your business. Penny wise, pound foolish as they say.

Amex is usually good about this, and they can do insta-replacements at most of their travel offices too.
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Old 07-25-2018, 09:05 AM   #3
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Al, I think it would be up to the credit card company. My wife and I each have an American Express card with the same number. Different security codes on the back. All other cards we have use different numbers for each of us.
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Old 07-25-2018, 09:10 AM   #4
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The Costco Visa from Citi has different card numbers for each person on the account. Mine recently had to be replaced due to fraud, but DH's card continued to work until my new one arrived.

We also have two other cards from other banks.
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Old 07-25-2018, 09:16 AM   #5
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I would personally just use a different CC with a different bank. If it's important to you to only have one CC, then this situation will be the minor inconvenience you have to deal with. If DW has a card on the same account you can just use that one. Also, I think if you tell them it's your only card they will overnight the replacement to you.
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Old 07-25-2018, 09:27 AM   #6
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I have had similar situations where suspected fraud (real fraud as it turned out) was detected by the CC company. I had to have my card number/account number changed. I was denied use until the new card showed up in snail mail! I have also been in Asia when the CC was denied due to suspected fraud. I simply used a 2nd CC that I carry to check out of the hotel. I called CC customer service and had the hold cleared, only to have it denied the next day checking out of another hotel. A 2nd call with a bit of anger in my voice actually did the trick.

Having a backup CC in my wallet (or two) is a good idea for such cases. Even better is to split those account's cards into 2 different person's wallets travelling together in case of theft of one of the wallets/purses. You'll still have at least one active card to use. I have Discover, and a few different Visa accounts thru different "sponsoring" companies that I use for different purposes.
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Old 07-25-2018, 09:41 AM   #7
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I keep my back-up CC at home. It used to be my main CC until I got a cash-back card a few years ago which relegated my old main CC to back-up status. I have one automatic, small annual charge on the now-backup CC which will keep the account open. I only carry the back-up card with me when I travel out of town for a long stretch. Otherwise, my debit card acts as a back-up card on a day-to-day basis. BTW I have never had a CC declined for any reason.
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Old 07-25-2018, 09:41 AM   #8
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We use 4 CC all with BOA for various reasons. When we travel, we always take 2 cards and I carry 2 or 3 cards at all other times.
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Old 07-25-2018, 09:44 AM   #9
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My backup card is with my bank. My main card is with my brokerage firm. This way I still only need to look at two statements. My backup card stays home and is only used once or twice a year to keep it active.
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Old 07-25-2018, 10:00 AM   #10
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I've had a bad experience with having cards closed on me due to rewards cards being cancelled as they cancelled the programs and it really mucked with my credit score as I only had 2 cards at that time so it halved my available credit.

I've also had a card stopped due to potential fraud when filling up gas at the Jersey turnpike and of course I was running late to return the car and make the flight so without a second card I would have been hosed... I got a text like 30 minutes later.. did you mean to make this purchase? Yes and now its too late.

And then there is the skimmers.. my honey had all his cards skimmed in his wallet so had 3 different cards with fraud on them all at the same time, this person ran $300 across every card at a local grocery store over and over and over until it was blocked...that was a fun day.

So I carry 2 active cards on me but with different banks and different types as there are still times when it is better to use one over the other. I have 4 cards total (one which I don't use other than a recurring charity donation just to keep it active and one that I use for all internet purchases).
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Old 07-25-2018, 10:12 AM   #11
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Pick a card that increases your ability to earn rewards. For example, if your current card gives 5% on gasoline purchases, maybe choose a second card from a different bank that gives a 3% reward on grocery purchases. I figure that it takes about 4 cards to really work the reward system well.
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Old 07-25-2018, 10:46 AM   #12
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I have 5 credit cards from different banks. Fraud happens. I think 2 have been compromised multiple times and yup, each time you wait a week or 2 for the new card to arrive.
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Old 07-25-2018, 10:47 AM   #13
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PenFed main VISA - 2% back. - my main card (DW's too).

Capital One VISA - 1.5% back - backup card (kept in my wallet)

Chase Amazon VISA - used only for Amazon purchases - 5% rebate - kept at home.

DW has a Wells Fargo CC that she uses "occasionally" when she wants to buy crap for the kids/grandkids and don't want me to know. I can't tear this away from her......
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Old 07-25-2018, 10:54 AM   #14
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I always have a backup and, as others have noted, having 2 cards with the same number won't do you any good if the account is blocked due to fraud or even if you just misplaced it. (I once drove off with it on the back of my car after filling the tank.)


I've needed the backup a few times when I got into a foreign country and the primary was rejected because I never call and tell them beforehand. Some banks seem to be more sensitive to that than others. Primary is Fidelity; my new secondary is an American Airlines card and I'm about to give up the Marriott card. I like the backup card to be one that gives me reward points for specific travel.
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Old 07-25-2018, 10:56 AM   #15
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Yes, I have a second card, and I have my cell phone bill charged to it each month (with autopay set up) just to keep it active. Many will cancel if you don't use it for long periods of time.

This second card is with BOA, which I like because they have a Shop Safe https://www.bankofamerica.com/privac...ds/shopsafe.go card number generator, which I use for "odd" new online purchases I may make from time to time. It's only good for the one time, you set the limit they can charge, and then it's no good. So if a mom & pop site doesn't have great security and they get hacked, they aren't getting your real credit card number.
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Old 07-25-2018, 10:57 AM   #16
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Some banks provide different credit card numbers for each card holder. American Express does that routinely. My Citibank issued Costco VISA is that way too - maybe because they took over the Costco Amex book.

We have so many CCs now that we don’t need backups! I have cards reserved for monthly auto bills only so that there is much less chance of disruption if a card is compromised.
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Old 07-25-2018, 11:01 AM   #17
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Through various means, we qualify for the BOA Platinum Preferred status.
Thus our cards have the following rewards:
Premium rewards - 3.5% on restaurants/Travel, 2.66% on everything else
Travel rewards - 4.125% on Travel if booking with BOA, otherwise 2.66% which we use for automated recurring charges
Cash rewards - 5.25% on gas, 3.5% on groceries. We have 2 of these cards, as it is limited to $2,500 quarterly, which we surpass.

Only the Premier card has a yearly fee, which is $95 and you get back $100 for baggage fees when traveling; thus it is effectively free.
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Old 07-25-2018, 11:16 AM   #18
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I always carry along a backup when traveling.

Never know when something my come up and I need to get home.
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Old 07-25-2018, 11:33 AM   #19
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We have multiple credit card accounts, some of which we never use and those cards stay at home. On trips we carry at least one extra, and ever since I lost my wallet on a trip to Hawaii I've learned to keep cards and IDs in different places, like one in my wallet and another in my backpack or carryon. (As an aside, this is when I learned that not having ID to check into the hotel was more of a hassle than not having ID to get through TSA. I almost slept on the beach that night.)

Our Capital One cards have different numbers for the same account. I've had other accounts where they issued two cards with the same numbers.
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Old 07-25-2018, 11:34 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
I saw a $5 charge I didn't recognize on my CC bill, and reported it. Now we're without a card for a week.

Once that happened when on a trip.

It makes me think it would be good to have a second card that we use only in that situation.

Will the CC company allow you to have two cards for the same account?

Anyone do that?
I've had a second CC as a back-up since 1986! Sometimes months go by between uses of the secondary card.
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