Which Credit Card Should I Have Used For This Purchase?

by joeheg

I usually know off the top of my head which is the best credit card for each type of purchase. Expenses for airfare, dining (either in the U.S. or worldwide), grocery stores, and gas stations all have a preferred card and usually a back-up.

However, during our recent trip to Germany, I was stumped for which card I should pull out of my wallet for a particular purchase. Given, I’m not accustomed to having to pay for this service.

There’s always a tidbit of information that you learn during your travels that makes life after that a little bit easier. If you don’t need to use this info for a while, you’re undoubtedly going to forget about it until you come across it again.

Thus was our experience with public toilets.

It didn’t take long to remember that using a public toilet in Europe isn’t free. No matter if you’re at the train station, visiting a castle, or at a church, you’re going to have to pay to pee. Here was the notice for a water closet outside a museum.


I was suddenly reminded of the necessity of ALWAYS having some change with you. This bathroom charged a reasonable €0.50 but I only had a €10 bill. Luckily, the entrance machine had us covered.


I wondered, would this code as travel? I was at a museum, would it code as entertainment (yes, I thought that)? Did I need to use my card with a chip+PIN?

Before I spent way more time than necessary on this dilemma (too late), I saw the change machine against the wall. Problem solved. I broke my 10 Euro note into coins and I was spared having to charge the toilet entrance fee to a credit card.

Mental note for our next trip: remember to bring change when leaving the room and when you have the chance to use a free bathroom, take advantage of it.

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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary

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