'Charge it' European style


If you've been shopping in Europe with a credit card, you might have had a merchant tell you that you can't use your card with them. What's going on?

Some merchants in Europe aren't accepting U.S. credit cards, even when they're supposed to.

Many European countries are now using credit cards embedded with microchips. These cards require users to type in a PIN number instead of signing. This is commonly referred to as a "chip and PIN" credit card system.

U.S. credit cards, however, are still "swipe and sign." The cards have a magnetic strip that is swiped instead of the microchip, and users must sign a receipt.