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Author Topic: Stores Can Now Charge You Extra Just for Using a Credit Card  (Read 1847 times)
Yankee (BitInstant)
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January 29, 2013, 07:55:44 PM
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This.

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Starting this past Sunday, January 27th, retailers can now charge up to 4% extra on purchases made using a credit card.

The actual fee will vary, as it's pinned to the cost of how much it costs the retailer to accept the card. That's typically 1.5 to 3 percent, but can go higher. Debit cards are not affected, nor are, obviously, purchases made with cash. The new fee allowance stems from an antitrust suit filed by merchants who were being strong-armed by credit card companies who were found to be conspiring to fix the fees merchants pay to process the fees. So really, this is just merchants passing the cost on to you, which is sort of questionable (accepting credit cards brings more business, etc.) but understandable.

Source: http://gizmodo.com/5979917/stores-can-now-charge-you-extra-for-using-a-credit-card

Credit Card costs are becoming too high for merchants, and Im really happy something like this is passing as itll push Bitcoin further, Ill explain why.

For as long as I've been involved in Bitcoin, a question that I always get is "Well, why would people want to use Bitcoin, it dosent cost me anything to use a credit card"

Yes, but now it does.

I'd always respond to that with a few answers, a common one being "Sure, but merchants will offer steep discounts for you paying in Bitcoin because they dont have to worry about fraud, chargebacks, high % merchant fees, and cash flow to name a few"

However, now my argument is totally different.

What will happen is people will see merchants charging 4% to use a credit card, but offer 5% discount if paid with Bitcoin..thats almost 10% difference!

......It's starting my friends  Grin

-Charlie

"In a free society, private payments should be covered by merchant-customer privilege just as attorney-client privilege covers confidential legal communication." - Jon Matonis, Director, Bitcoin Foundation
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January 29, 2013, 08:01:25 PM
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Agree fully!

For a long time the cost of credit cards has been hidden to the public. It's paid by the merchant, and only indirectly borne by the customer in higher prices that they're never aware of. More and more, you'll start seeing merchants adding the explicit fee on top of the shelf price, now that they can legally do so.

It'll take a while for this to take effect, but I'd imagine in 2-3 years people will be used to paying X% more when they use their cards. Just one more macro driver of Bitcoin adoption.

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January 29, 2013, 08:20:34 PM
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the only reason i pay with VISA is to get my 1% bonus dollars....  Cry

thank fully this appears to be in US only, so I'll keep taking advantage of the bonus dollars for a little while longer

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January 29, 2013, 08:26:27 PM
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I feel this has a weird relation back to Bitcoin since this fee is applied to credit cards and not debit cards, meaning it is only affecting people that are spending money they don't have.  Something that you can't do (yet?) with Bitcoin.
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January 29, 2013, 08:31:24 PM
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I feel this has a weird relation back to Bitcoin since this fee is applied to credit cards and not debit cards, meaning it is only affecting people that are spending money they don't have.  Something that you can't do (yet?) with Bitcoin.

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January 29, 2013, 08:32:23 PM
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There is a law here that prices cannot be cheaper for cash purchases (and at the same time, cannot be more for cc purchases)... it's funny that it was brought in by VISA/Mastercard.  So we're safe from that crazy law here, but who knows, we always pick up the dumbest of USA laws it seems.
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January 29, 2013, 08:37:36 PM
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So let me tally this up right, and correct me if I'm wrong...

1)  Retailers/Merchants complained about credit card fees being too high so they got Dodd-Frank, limiting the fees they get charged on transactions, plus the ability to say no to credit cards on small purchases and provide incentives to pay in cash etc.

now a short while later....

2) Retailers/Merchants complain about credit card fees being too high and being "strong armed" into not being able to directly make the consumer pay (above the already increased shelf prices)....

sounds to me that the credit card companies are not 100% of the problem......  but yes this will be good for bitcoin/cryptocurrency adoption in any case!

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January 29, 2013, 08:40:55 PM
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Shouldn't the title be "Stores are now allowed to let you pay your credit card fees" or something like this?

IMO, I found it OK that the CC Companies let a store only use CCs if they agree to not let their customers charge extra for using them.

What I didn't find OK is that they weren't allowed to give customers paying cash any special Bonuses (f.e. 1% off when you pay cash), while CC Users get Bonuses all the time, Bonuses paid by the stores.

Now Stores are allowed to give Bonuses for paining cash and that's fair.

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January 29, 2013, 08:41:56 PM
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This.

Quote
Starting this past Sunday, January 27th, retailers can now charge up to 4% extra on purchases made using a credit card.

What will happen is people will see merchants charging 4% to use a credit card, but offer 5% discount if paid with Bitcoin..thats almost 10% difference!

......It's starting my friends  Grin

-Charlie


I agree this is good for helping people see what is going on, and for hitting CC users with the fee instead of all customers seems good. But why would there both be a CC fee and a BTC discount? I thought the main point of the BTC discount idea was that it let the merchant avoid the CC fee. Of course if a merchant was trying to acquire BTC they might be willing to pay to avoid the fees and work involved with getting BTC, but those fees and waits are small and getting smaller all the time.

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January 29, 2013, 08:43:42 PM
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Shouldn't the title be "Stores are now allowed to let you pay you credit card fees" or something like this?


Yes, I wonder how many stores really will pass the fees on. Many stores may not want to discourage customers from buying things they can only afford by charging it to a card. And in any high markup business it might just not be worth giving your customers a negative surprise at checkout.

Otoh, in some cases people using CC will be less price sensitive and being able to charge them a bit 'more' could be good for stores.

I don't use a CC, but in general if I am charged more than the tag I get a little peeved. Even when I expect it (sales tax) it still seems wrong. I don't care how common it might get, if you offer me something for X and then tell me "Wait, my brother/friend/boss/cat needs a bit too." that's annoying.

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January 29, 2013, 08:47:36 PM
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Shouldn't the title be "Stores are now allowed to let you pay you credit card fees" or something like this?


Yes, I wonder how many stores really will pass the fees on. Many stores may not want to discourage customers from buying things they can only afford by charging it to a card. And in any high markup business it might just not be worth giving your customers a negative surprise at checkout.

I don't think many. But I can imagine it goes a little this way:


What I didn't find OK is that they weren't allowed to give customers paying cash any special Bonuses (f.e. 1% off when you pay cash), while CC Users get Bonuses all the time, Bonuses paid by the stores.

Now Stores are allowed to give Bonuses for paining cash and that's fair.

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January 29, 2013, 08:48:54 PM
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Most store may choose not to raise the fee, at least not immediately.

Actually, the whole thing is just so odd. At what time before that charging one payment method a higher price is illegal?

Isn't you can charge a price you like?
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January 29, 2013, 08:49:40 PM
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Shouldn't the title be "Stores are now allowed to let you pay you credit card fees" or something like this?


Yes, I wonder how many stores really will pass the fees on. Many stores may not want to discourage customers from buying things they can only afford by charging it to a card. And in any high markup business it might just not be worth giving your customers a negative surprise at checkout.

It's only a matter of time once this gets started where it is no longer a surprise and instead normal business.  Merchants apparently want to have their cake and eat it too as I highly doubt we will see a mass 1 to 4% general price reduction in goods (because these fees were already factored into your shelf price) and services but we will see the 1 to 4% surcharge for using your credit card I bet, it will start small-ish (however wal-mart seems to be on the pro-charge consumers side of the fence so it may spread pretty rapidly...) but once merchants really realize that they can get a 2 to 8% improvement on their bottom line with this non-sense they will soon all migrate and it'll become the norm that people are just used to being the way things are.

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January 29, 2013, 09:06:37 PM
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The auto repair guy I go to gives me a discount for paying with cash instead of credit cards. Around Detroit, gas stations typically charge 10 cents more per gallon if you pay with a credit card (they have been doing this a couple years now). I don't know how they have been getting away with it before this, but they have all been doing it.

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January 29, 2013, 09:25:30 PM
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This is definitely a scenario where bitcoin makes a lot of sense.  Now that I can pay less with cash, I'll definitely be more tempted to do so despite the annoyance of dealing with bills & change.  Hopefully that annoyance of sacrificing convenience for cheapness will spawn a greater demand for bitcoin.  Bitcoin isn't necessarily free either, but its a lot less than 4%.  I'm willing to pay a fraction of a percentage for convenience, but 4% is high enough to tempt me to using cash over credit card for sure.  I guess I'm slightly thankful I live in a state that has a law against charging a difference even though I would vote against the law due to principle if I had a vote.

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January 29, 2013, 09:39:24 PM
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Most store may choose not to raise the fee, at least not immediately.

Actually, the whole thing is just so odd. At what time before that charging one payment method a higher price is illegal?

Isn't you can charge a price you like?

There was no law in most states.  The credit card companies made you sign a contract stating you will not charge more for cards.  If you don't agree you can't take cards.  This law says that part of the contract is not legal anymore and the merchant can charge for cards and CAN NOT be terminated for this. 


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January 29, 2013, 09:52:54 PM
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My wife's store used to give a 5% discount for cash.

We looked up our CC agreements and it said we could not charge extra for using cards.

American Express charges the most, if we could have charged more for Amex we would have.

People were usually willing to pull out cash when we told them about the discount.

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January 29, 2013, 11:08:39 PM
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Shouldn't the title be "Stores are now allowed to let you pay you credit card fees" or something like this?


Yes, I wonder how many stores really will pass the fees on. Many stores may not want to discourage customers from buying things they can only afford by charging it to a card. And in any high markup business it might just not be worth giving your customers a negative surprise at checkout.

It's only a matter of time once this gets started where it is no longer a surprise and instead normal business.  Merchants apparently want to have their cake and eat it too as I highly doubt we will see a mass 1 to 4% general price reduction in goods (because these fees were already factored into your shelf price) and services but we will see the 1 to 4% surcharge for using your credit card I bet, it will start small-ish (however wal-mart seems to be on the pro-charge consumers side of the fence so it may spread pretty rapidly...) but once merchants really realize that they can get a 2 to 8% improvement on their bottom line with this non-sense they will soon all migrate and it'll become the norm that people are just used to being the way things are.

This is essentially a claim that almost no customer cares about a 2-8% change in price. Since for the most part people actually do care a business that simply does not raise prices will have booming business at the expense of all others. It is slightly counter-intuitive since businesses are the ones writing the actual price tags, but really sellers don't set the prices of things.

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January 29, 2013, 11:40:36 PM
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I feel this has a weird relation back to Bitcoin since this fee is applied to credit cards and not debit cards, meaning it is only affecting people that are spending money they don't have.  Something that you can't do (yet?) with Bitcoin.

Many people use credit cards because of cash back every month, and pay their balances off. They're essentially just getting back some of the bs fees. Debit cards can also be run as credit cards and are charged the same visa/mc fees. My credit union pays 3% interest on up to $10k as long as you use your debit card 10 or 12 times a month without using the pin. If you use the pin, it's a debit tx and they don't make money.

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January 29, 2013, 11:52:51 PM
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This.

Quote
Starting this past Sunday, January 27th, retailers can now charge up to 4% extra on purchases made using a credit card.

The actual fee will vary, as it's pinned to the cost of how much it costs the retailer to accept the card. That's typically 1.5 to 3 percent, but can go higher. Debit cards are not affected, nor are, obviously, purchases made with cash. The new fee allowance stems from an antitrust suit filed by merchants who were being strong-armed by credit card companies who were found to be conspiring to fix the fees merchants pay to process the fees. So really, this is just merchants passing the cost on to you, which is sort of questionable (accepting credit cards brings more business, etc.) but understandable.

Source: http://gizmodo.com/5979917/stores-can-now-charge-you-extra-for-using-a-credit-card

Credit Card costs are becoming too high for merchants, and Im really happy something like this is passing as itll push Bitcoin further, Ill explain why.

For as long as I've been involved in Bitcoin, a question that I always get is "Well, why would people want to use Bitcoin, it dosent cost me anything to use a credit card"

Yes, but now it does.

I'd always respond to that with a few answers, a common one being "Sure, but merchants will offer steep discounts for you paying in Bitcoin because they dont have to worry about fraud, chargebacks, high % merchant fees, and cash flow to name a few"

However, now my argument is totally different.

What will happen is people will see merchants charging 4% to use a credit card, but offer 5% discount if paid with Bitcoin..thats almost 10% difference!

......It's starting my friends  Grin

-Charlie


it sounds a lot better when you say it the other way. i.e. stores can now offer a discount for using cash!

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