Tried booking through SCNF for my France/Belgium rail tickets and using Antarctic as my collection country like some have advised but the transaction was declined. Is this there way of keeping us from avoiding using the Rail Europe website?
I have found that when using my American debit card online that it us always rejected, but I'm fine when I use a credit card.
If you're trying to pre-book domestic rail tickets within Belgium, don't bother. There's no price advantage and they don't sell reservations. Just buy them at the station.
This week American Express declined the transaction when I tried to book on sncf.fr. However a call to fraud alert and the transaction went through. It wasn't SNCF doing the blocking but Amex. It may have been the fr website. Last month a purchase on DB's English website didn't generate a fraud alert. BTW, we put France and are picking the tickets up in France. If you want to use the fr website, just open the En one next to it to translate and toggle back and forth.
Bets, that's interesting. I called Amex recently to alert them I would be making some international ticket purchases over the Internet, and the representatives (I spoke to 2 different ones) acted like the calls hadn't been necessary. They essentially gave the message that I was protected anyway against fraud and didn't need to worry. Even when I explained that I was more concerned about the transactions being rejected in real time, the response was that I didn't need to worry about that. They seemed more concerned about how close my current outstanding balance was in comparison to my allowable spending limit (which I never even come remotely close to).
Indeed, it was the first time Amex has ever blocked a transaction. In fact, they've told me it wasn't necessary to call them with my whereabouts as it's a card made for travel. When I asked why SNCF but not DB, the person said something about algorithms. I think it was using the .fr website instead of the en.