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Strange Credit vs. Debit Situation at Local Market

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Strange Credit vs. Debit Situation at Local Market

Old 03-13-08, 05:01 PM
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Strange Credit vs. Debit Situation at Local Market

I work near a small market and shop there regularly. Recently they started a weird policy. I tried to use my debit card for a $4 item, but I was told I could not use my card unless I wanted it ran as credit instead. I told her, "whatever" and charged it and went on my way. The next time I went in I asked another person that works there about it, and she said that they are not to run sales of less than $5 as debit, because too many people were using the cashback option as a cheap ATM (I admit that I have done this). So, I can see having a policy of "no cash back for purchases under $5", but why would a store ever push a credit sell over a debit sell? They still get charged a percentage when running a credit card and no percentage when running a debit card, right? Unless I am missing something, they are losing money with this policy.
Old 03-13-08, 05:15 PM
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They may get charged a fee for running card as debit too for under a certain amount.

But typically, it's bad customer service to have any kind of minimum purchases for a certain tender type.
Old 03-13-08, 05:24 PM
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I think it's actually illegal to do this, but I will have to do some research before I can say it for a fact.

http://www.bankrate.com/brm/news/cc/20010418a.asp

EDITED TO ADD that it is not illegal; however, it IS a violation of the merchant's contract with the credit card companies.

Last edited by Vibiana; 03-13-08 at 05:27 PM.
Old 03-13-08, 06:18 PM
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Yeah a local store here does it too. I think I posted a thread about it awhile back. It's a violation of their merchant policy. This store actually charges you fifty cents if you spend under $5.00.
Old 03-13-08, 06:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Vibiana
I think it's actually illegal to do this, but I will have to do some research before I can say it for a fact.

http://www.bankrate.com/brm/news/cc/20010418a.asp

EDITED TO ADD that it is not illegal; however, it IS a violation of the merchant's contract with the credit card companies.
The link talks about it being a violation to set a minimum for a credit purchase, but what about debit purchases?
Old 03-14-08, 08:08 AM
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Originally Posted by WallyOPD
The link talks about it being a violation to set a minimum for a credit purchase, but what about debit purchases?
It is still a violation of their merchant agreement. You can report them if you want to be mean about it, they could lose their ability to take plastic.
Old 03-14-08, 02:03 PM
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Yeah, a ton of mom and pop places do it, and they know it is a violation.
Old 03-14-08, 03:19 PM
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I do that all the time at the local supermarket. Not sure of their policy, because I never spend under $5.
Old 03-14-08, 05:06 PM
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If they are still willing to take your check, putting a lower limit on your debit is legal.
Old 03-14-08, 07:39 PM
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They should charge a buck (or more) for people who still write checks! It seems like those who still live in the dark ages of checkwriting, suddenly wake up at the register AFTER they get the total and then begin filling out a check! Why in the hell they don't go ahead and fill everything out except the amount BEFORE the clerk is finished ringing everything up is maddening!
Old 03-14-08, 07:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Sonicflood
Why in the hell they don't go ahead and fill everything out except the amount BEFORE the clerk is finished ringing everything up is maddening!
Because they have to watch the clerk and the display to make sure everything is being processed accurately. Can't do that while pre-writing a check.
Old 03-14-08, 08:01 PM
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^^^ Bullshit ^^^ It's because they are dumb asses. I often see them stand there looking everywhere BUT the register display. They don't even have their checkbook out of their pocket/purse.
Old 03-14-08, 09:01 PM
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For most retailers PIN based debit cards are charged a relatively high transaction fee ($.50) plus a low percent of the charge (0-1.0%).

Credit cards are usually charged a lower transaction fee ($0-$.35) but a higher percentage of the charge (1-2.5%).

Under five dollars the debit transaction is really cutting into profit. A guy spending $2-$3 on a debit card probably costs them money.

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