Credit Card Surcharges

March 30, 2023

You may have heard me talk before about the importance of accepting credit cards for payments in businesses. When a customer wants to give you money, it’s been proven that they have less anxiety and less regret about spending money if they spend it on a credit card rather than pulling out their hard-earned cash.

New trend in the marketplace

Well, there’s a new trend in the marketplace dealing with credit cards right now that I find pretty troubling and a lot of this is perpetuated by the credit card merchant processing companies, and that is passing along the charge for the credit card to the customer, and in essence, giving a cash price and a credit price, kind of like they used to do at the gasoline, fuelers and retailers, and some still do that, but I hate it.

Honestly, I never go to a station that has a higher price for credit than for cash.

In looking at how this trend is working, this is mostly happening with restaurants where I’m seeing the pass through of the credit card fees. I went to a restaurant the other night with my mom. It was a pizza place here, local in town, and I spent probably $20 I’m rounding off the number for effect.

Credit card fees

I received my bill to sign off after I got my credit card, and so did my mom, and I was charged an additional 84 cents for a credit card fee. She had an additional 54 cents added to her ticket for her credit card fee.

I was completely turned off by this, and I’ll tell you why. I’d happily have given them $3 more for my meal if they’d just raised their price to accommodate adding in the fee all in their price.

People are not as price sensitive as a lot of people make out to be, and if I’m going to pay that price, whether it’s separated out or all combined in the price, my price sensitivity is on paying the whole thing.

Don’t do the bait and switch and bring me in at a lower price and charge me a higher price because I’m using a credit card.

They were very upfront about this, there were signs on the door on each and every table that they were charging me three and a half percent or 4%, I can’t remember which and it frankly doesn’t matter, if I paid with a credit card instead of cash.

What are we going to do?

So, what else are we going to do? Are we going to add in a fee because I come in at lunch, versus at dinner? Are they going to add in a fee because the electricity rate went up?

How about adding a surcharge to my bill for your electric or your water price is higher, or the air conditioning was cut down lower in the restaurant? Should I charge a surcharge for having the air cooler in the restaurant?

Come on, folks, step back and remember why you’re in business. You’re in business to bring in people and sell to them and provide them an experience.

Is this the last taste you want to leave in their mouth as they’re paying their bill when they leave? Take a little bit of note as to my video. I am recording this video because I was charged 84 cents. I would’ve gladly paid $5 more for my food if that would’ve been the bill.

Please don’t pass along credit card fees

I didn’t go to this restaurant because of the price on their menu. I went for convenience, I went because I knew the food was good, I did not go because the price tag went up a dollar or two from the last time I’d been there.

Inflation is kicked in everywhere, don’t kick your customers to the curb, they understand that, they’re not dumb just raise your prices.

Please don’t pass along credit card fees. You look petty and you look unprofessional in my world, because you’re not building it into your prices and being upfront with your customers.

Credit Card Cm

For additional read: Do I have to keep all of my credit card and cash register receipts?

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Donna Bordeaux, CPA with Calculated Moves

Creativity and CPAs don’t generally go together. Most people think of CPAs as nerdy accountants who can’t talk with people. Well, it’s time to break that stereotype. Lively, friendly, and knowledgeable can be a part of your relationship with your CPA, as demonstrated by Donna and Chad Bordeaux. They have over 50 years of combined experience as entrepreneurial CPAs. They’ve owned businesses and helped business owners exceed their wildest dreams. They have been able to help businesses earn many times more profit than the average business in the same industry and are passionate about helping industries that help families build great memories.