Back to square one: Lowered credit limits foil some vacation plans

Retailers across the country report trouble moving big-ticket items because of newly reduced credit limits, but vacation sellers are truly screwed by them. Have you ever heard of a vacation that wasn't a big-ticket purchase? Budgeting just $100 a day for a week-long vacation would be considered miserly.

Even when people want to spend money on a trip, they're increasingly finding their credit card issuer won't let them. On Tuesday, I wrote about the effect that payment slowdowns are having on our abilities to get medication at pharmacies. Pauline Frommer, who edits her own series of guide books (and for whom I write sometimes), turned me onto severe handicaps that travelers are facing over newly-lowered credit limits.

"Younger people are finding that the credit limits on their credit card may not be enough to pay for a vacation," says Pat Webb, who runs cruise broker CruiseStar.com out of Pomona, CA. Since around October, Webb told me, about 30% of customers under 40 have been declined by their credit card issuers when their cards were run through the machine. As we've reported on WalletPop before, people aren't always clearly warned when their limit has gone down.