a bit amazed at a few of the changes since I was living in Europe. I think we take some of these things for granted, like being able to use your credit card anywhere. I had this issue a few years back while visiting California of all places. I thought my Canadian credit card would work just fine.. Wrong! I was lucky to have a few back up cards with me.
It's also the same way in Europe, your US credit doesn't get you too far in Europe. Most European machines accepting cards only accept chipped cards, with some accepting your card if you know your PIN number. Ironically, the US is a bit behind in technology and does not offer these chip cards just yet from the major banks.
One great place to get a chipped card for travel without fees is from a bank offering GlobeTrek Visa. From what I read, the Visa card seems to be totally worth it if you are visiting Europe and would rather pay by VISA that works.