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Jan 13, surcharge fees can apply

Valued Contributor

Jan 13, surcharge fees can apply

So starting Jan 13, except in 10 (mainly big states), MC and Visa have to allow merchants to charge surcharge fees for using credit cards, see, e.g. http://usa.visa.com/personal/using_visa/checkout_fees/index.html

 

Do people here expect to get impacted much?  I also wonder if merchants are going to be less likely to accept cards in the 10 exempt states.

Message 1 of 19
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Valued Contributor

Re: Jan 13, surcharge fees can apply


bs6054 wrote:

So starting Jan 13, except in 10 (mainly big states), MC and Visa have to allow merchants to charge surcharge fees for using credit cards, see, e.g. http://usa.visa.com/personal/using_visa/checkout_fees/index.html

 

Do people here expect to get impacted much?  I also wonder if merchants are going to be less likely to accept cards in the 10 exempt states.


Maybe at smaller retailers (aka small businesses) it would be an impact. I don't forsee big retailers doing it just yet (would definitely result in less purchases). It's already done on gas (well, they have a higher price for paying with credit as opposed to gas) which is a pain in the butt Smiley Mad Then I only use my Shell card just to have a purchase on it or a card that may be giving me 5% cash back to counteract it. Before I had the collection I did, I would run all the way to the bank, take out about $40 or $60, depending on what car I was filling up, then go allll the way back to my local gas station to pay with cash. Not fun.

 

Also retailers are beginning to accept PayPal, so I wonder how this plays into the mix...


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Message 2 of 19
Valued Contributor

Re: Jan 13, surcharge fees can apply

I dont think so for me because I live in FL.

Message 3 of 19
Senior Contributor

Re: Jan 13, surcharge fees can apply


bs6054 wrote:

So starting Jan 13, except in 10 (mainly big states), MC and Visa have to allow merchants to charge surcharge fees for using credit cards, see, e.g. http://usa.visa.com/personal/using_visa/checkout_fees/index.html

 

Do people here expect to get impacted much?  I also wonder if merchants are going to be less likely to accept cards in the 10 exempt states.


Wow. That's not good. I could definitely see big corps using this to their advantage, since they must pay a pretty penny in bankcard discounts. I pay nearly everything w/a CC, mostly for the rewards: satellite, internet, cell phone, regular phone, water bill, etc. If these companies decided to start charging a fee to pay w/a CC (which BTW would also include debit cards AFAIK, since they run through the Visa or MC network), it would be a major PITA.

 

I don't think non-necessities would charge a fee because they WANT your business. Like, Amazon would be shooting themselves in the foot if they did that. So, discretionary purchases probably wouldn't be affected.

 

I guess time will tell...

 

 

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Message 4 of 19
Valued Contributor

Re: Jan 13, surcharge fees can apply


bichonmom wrote:

bs6054 wrote:

So starting Jan 13, except in 10 (mainly big states), MC and Visa have to allow merchants to charge surcharge fees for using credit cards, see, e.g. http://usa.visa.com/personal/using_visa/checkout_fees/index.html

 

Do people here expect to get impacted much?  I also wonder if merchants are going to be less likely to accept cards in the 10 exempt states.


Wow. That's not good. I could definitely see big corps using this to their advantage, since they must pay a pretty penny in bankcard discounts. I pay nearly everything w/a CC, mostly for the rewards: satellite, internet, cell phone, regular phone, water bill, etc. If these companies decided to start charging a fee to pay w/a CC (which BTW would also include debit cards AFAIK, since they run through the Visa or MC network), it would be a major PITA.

 

I don't think non-necessities would charge a fee because they WANT your business. Like, Amazon would be shooting themselves in the foot if they did that. So, discretionary purchases probably wouldn't be affected.

 

I guess time will tell...

 

 


Re debit cards: from the link 

 

  • Retailers are permitted to apply a surcharge to only credit card purchases and cannot impose a surcharge for purchases made using a debit or prepaid card.

 

 


As you say, time will tell.  There is an upper limit on the surcharge (the actual cost they pay capped at 4%), but stores could compete by offering lower surcharges than others without not having one.   Also stores in the 10 states that aren't allowed charging will end up at a cost disadvantage to others, so it will be interesting to see how that shakes out.

 

In the long term, I wouldn't be surprised to see swipe fees decreased, forcing less generous rewards programs.  Hope not, but that seems to be the position that makes sense for most!

Message 5 of 19
Valued Contributor

Re: Jan 13, surcharge fees can apply

Also see http://www.knowyourcard.org/glance/glance_credit_cards

 

Visa and MasterCard reached a legal settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice and seven state attorneys general to resolve investigations into Visa’s merchant acceptance rules. American Express is still under investigation. This gives merchants more ability to influence – or steer – how you pay. Retailers may guide you to other forms of payment and offer discounts if you choose to pay with cash, check or PIN debit. Since the settlement:

 

  • A merchant may offer a discount for paying with a specific card network.
  • A merchant may offer a discount for paying with a non-rewards credit card.

 

That will be interesting!

 

Edit: This was allowed since July 2011, and I have never seen the non-rewards card bit happen.  Has anyone?

Message 6 of 19
Valued Contributor

Re: Jan 13, surcharge fees can apply

doesn't apply to me as i live in mass but question. 

if gas stations are charging more for gas for use with a credit card (including debit) is that more or less a surcharge? 

or a discount to people who use cash? 

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Message 7 of 19
Valued Contributor

Re: Jan 13, surcharge fees can apply

Discount!  From link in OP:

 

Discounts for Cash Payments are allowed in Massachusetts

Discount offered to induce payment by cash, check or other means not involving a credit card not considered a finance charge if offered to all prospective buyers and disclosed clearly and conspicuously.

Statute: Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 140D, § 28A(b) (West)

 

 


Of course, it may not sound very different, but I think it's more something like:  The book has a RRP of $10.99.   In certain states, the merchant always has had the option to sell it to you for $10 if you paid cash.   Now I think the difference is I can sell it to you for $11.25 if you use a credit card.  Hopefully, most merchants won't!

 

Re in MA:  Not sure if you buy from an internet merchant located outside the 10 states  Does the prohibition on surcharge apply where the buyer is or where the seller is?  If the latter, you could get a surcharge.

 

Remember that this was considered a big enough deal for an expensive law suite to go on for years, so I would be surprised if at least some merchants didn't want to reap the benefits of the win.

Message 8 of 19
Established Contributor

Re: Jan 13, surcharge fees can apply

Rewards may improve so that consumers will keep using the cards so Visa and the others can keep their revenue stream where it is now. 

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Message 9 of 19
Valued Contributor

Re: Jan 13, surcharge fees can apply


FutureBillionaire wrote:

Rewards may improve so that consumers will keep using the cards so Visa and the others can keep their revenue stream where it is now. 


That would be interesting.   I guess for cash back rewards, the calculation is easy (2.5% surcharge, but I get 4% back), but for some rewards programs, much harder to evaluate

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