Some of the Fees you want to avoid,
1) Some of the airlines charge you few extra dollars if you book ticket on phone, those charges are not imposed if you book same ticket online. Few months back I came across this while buying my ticket with Jet blue
2) Keep check on your luggage overload in international flights. Call them in advance, find the limits, and then use some kind of weighing scale at home to get approximate idea.There are many airlines, which might charge you extra dollars for those extra weight
3) Renting car, check with your existing Insurance policy or credit card company, they might already have insurance feature for you. Never ever rent a car without complete coverage. I know one friend who paid more than 5000 dollars when he banged his car, and was driving without insurance.
Secondly if at all you bang into someone, do not panic. I once drove few hours New York to Boston, and while parking outside my friends place, i banged into one jeep ahead of me. I left a apology note with my Mobile number on it, mine was rented car with complete coverage. I am sure if i was suppose to call 911 there, please check with your friends what is right thing to do. I just left a note with my number. Next day one lady called me, i took her fax number and faxed her my rental car insurance claim paper.
4) While using Hotels. check on extra hidden charges. My friend had used Phone without knowing the cost. He was charged very heavily for it.
5) Cell hones, by default international calling is activated. if you use some calling card to call India(and thats the economic way) then disable international calling. One person I know was charged more than 1000 dollars when he used international calling to India by mistake. Reliance India call is most popular company to use.
6) If you ever get cheque with few dollars, telling you "congratulations!!! u have been gifted xyz dollars please deposit this cheque". PLEASE DO NOT DEPOSIT them. There are lot of catches inside. no one wants to give you free dollars. Once you deposit, in few days you will get into some of their paid program and then you will pay all those monthly fee. try canceling them, you will have to pay some cancellation fee. When you call them they will try to convince that you should keep the membership for few more days for no charge and bla bla...Just cancel the service. if you never wanted it, do not keep it.
7) Anything offered free, pls. be careful.
8) Checking accounts usually have rules. Some minimum deposit limit or they want certain amount to be deposited on monthly basis. Pls. be aware of rules. Else you will be charged for some fees. There is also some fees, when you try over withdraw from checking account. I was charged 35 dollars, when I was new in USA, I tried using my ATM card for 200 dollars, when balance in my account was less than it(I had more than 5000$ in Saving account though). After speaking to representative I got my fees canceled. Bank of America was good to help me. And then they suggested me, just to be on safer side I can activate an option wherein, if I try to over withdraw, money will get adjusted from saving account and some 10$ fees will be charged.
9) International money transfer is something I have never understood.
Money to India - ICICI money2india.com , its been always good to me. But 3 months back, it showed me rate of Rs 45.3 while making transaction and actual transfer was done at the rate of Rs 44.2 . I think I lost almost 50 dollars. I am very lazy to call them and try to get my money. I suggest you should not neglect if something like this happens t you.
10) My biggest complain, if you use your ATM card in different bank, you get fees of 2 dollars additional. This really sucks!!!
11) if you are traveling for small things avoid credit card usage. Keep 100 bucks in pocket and pay for all those coffees and food you buy on the way.
12) credit cards usage is the most imp. thing you should be careful of. keep it as safe as your wife. Try to learn more and more of how things are with it. I have no time to explain in detail about it.