Be on the lookout for new credit card "checkout fees"
Posted January 26, 2013
Updated January 28, 2013
As of Jan. 27, it may cost you more to use your credit card even if you have no annual fees or monthly balance. Merchants will now be able to charge credit card users a surcharge for paying with credit, up to 4% of the purchase price. According to a recent article, the checkout fees will need to be disclosed on the receipt and posted in the store. Although 10 states currently have laws restricting these types or checkout fees, North Carolina is not one of them.
What does this mean for you? If you find that a retailer has opted to charge a checkout fee if you pay by credit card, that is the time to pay by cash or check. Debit cards are also exempt from these fees.
The only reason we use our credit card is because it offers rewards in the form of gift cards. I use a credit card with no annual fee and because we pay off our balance every month, we do not incur monthly fees. If I have to pay a fee to use the card, the benefit of using credit will be greatly reduced and possibly eliminated (depending on the fees that retailers charge). If that is the case, I will move to a cash only system.
Some financial experts have mentioned that larger retailers will probably not opt to charge the fee, but that many smaller retailers and service providers may. Make sure you ask if you will be charged any extra fees the next time you decide to use your credit card.