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tigerpawl
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This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


This is a pet peeve of mine. My card of preference (for a number of reasons) is American Express. I understand it costs the merchant a little more in processing fees than the other cards (VISA, MC etc.) but it seems petty to whack AMEX.

My Optometrist just stopped honoring AMEX. He charged me $113 for contacts so I begrudgingly paid with my VISA. Rough estimate is $1.15 difference between his Amex and VISA fees.

Businesses already factor in Credit Card fees in their cost of operating their business. It's just petty, IMHO...



This post was edited on 5/4 at 12:27 pm



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OFWHAP
LSU Fan
Member since Sep 2007
4772 posts

re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


Look at me! I'm rich!!!





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TigerScratch
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West Monroe
Member since Oct 2005
847 posts

re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


quote:

Look at me! I'm rich!!!


Not at all. The AMEX perks are just so much better than other cards. Would you for accept a free Delta Airline ticket? I get one every CC anniversary, plus things like one free bag for up to 8 people flying with me, and other things.






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TigerScratch
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West Monroe
Member since Oct 2005
847 posts

re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


quote:

tigerpawl


I got into a pissing match with a guy working the Johnny's Pizza drive-thru in WM last week over this very thing. He wanted to explain to me how much more their fees were than all other cards blah, blah, blah. Yeah,like that .29 cents is going to be the reason this place lays you off kid.

He was also quick to inform me that they do accept Discover Card though.






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Putty
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Member since Oct 2003
20862 posts

re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


quote:

Merchants that don't accept American Express


I try to use AMEX for everything too, but I get it when merchants don't want to accept it. First of all, it's not hurting business because you're buying there anyway. (Don't get me started on the a-holes that only serve Pepsi products).

However, don't look at the fee differential in terms of total transaction price. Look at it in terms of margin. If they are in a business that operates at say a 30% margin, your extra 2% is another 6.7% of their margin eaten up. That crap adds up over the year. Also, I suspect a lot of merchants don't want to agree to AMEX terms of service which are more customer friendly than others.






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tigerpawl
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Can't get there from here.
Member since Dec 2003
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re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


quote:

He wanted to explain to me how much more their fees were...
Hearing this BS from a merchant is insulting. Their presumption is that only merchants are privy to the fee structure and customers are clueless. It's disingenuous and opportunistic.

Back to my main rub on this: it's petty... and it also gives you insight into the mindset of the merchant. If they quibble about this, chances are they'll quibble about a customer service related issue and stick you in the long run. That's why I'm shopping for a new Optometrist. I vote with my dollars.



This post was edited on 5/3 at 4:46 pm


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tigerpawl
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re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


quote:

First of all, it's not hurting business because you're buying there anyway.
I don't buy in to this for a minute.This is what unscrupulous merchants want you to believe. He can continue his no AMEX policy, and I can shop elsewhere. We do have a choice, and these merchants should pay particular attention to the online option.

quote:

Look at it in terms of margin. If they are in a business that operates at say a 30% margin, your extra 2% is another 6.7% of their margin eaten up.
Why demonize AMEX? Don't kid yourself - the merchants know what percentage of their business is from AMEX transactions. Why can't they adjust accordingly - just like they do with VISA/MC. It's takes a little high school algebra. Not rocket science.



This post was edited on 5/3 at 4:54 pm


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Putty
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Member since Oct 2003
20862 posts

re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


quote:

This is what unscrupulous merchants want you to believe.


How is it unscrupulous to make a business policy decision designed to cost you the least amount of money?

quote:

I can shop elsewhere. We do have a choice,


then exercise that choice and stop complaining about how the businesses you choose to patronize run their operations.






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OFWHAP
LSU Fan
Member since Sep 2007
4772 posts

re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


I was being mostly facetious with my previous post, making fun of people on the OT who bash the OPs for using their "problems" as ways to show off their wealth, status among women, etc.

quote:

He was also quick to inform me that they do accept Discover Card though.



Just from a quick glance Discover seems to charge a little less, but I really don't feel like going through the comparison of V/MC/Discover. However this is a pretty good primer on merchant fees.






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CoolHand
USA Fan
Member since Dec 2011
1482 posts

re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


I have noticed doctors to be one of the few places we have to pull out the Visa. I'm not changing doctors over it; though.





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OFWHAP
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Member since Sep 2007
4772 posts

re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


I love how merchants complain about credit card fees but then willfully ignore the fact that accepting credit cards drives sales volume by as much as 23%, according to some studies.





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foshizzle
LSU Fan
Washington DC metro
Member since Mar 2008
28578 posts

re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


quote:

I love how merchants complain about credit card fees but then willfully ignore the fact that accepting credit cards drives sales volume


I run a soccer team and routinely collect fees from players using credit cards by using the Square app on my phone. Sure, it costs me about $15 extra per season but gone are the days when I have to hound people for checks or cash.

That said, it does cost me money and event though it's only $15 that's a substantial part of whether I make or lose money that season (it's a soccer team, not real business).






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BACONisMEATcandy
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re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


Not only are the fees higher but Amex is more likely than the other 3 to withhold payments because a customer complaint

They just take it out of the next time an Amex is swiped. I am a huge Amex fan but I certainly understand why some refuse it.

I respect any business that doesn't take any credit cards because of swipe fees.






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gsvar2004
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Deep in the woods
Member since Nov 2007
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re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


I'm a small business owner and one who cannot accept amex. Not by choice only because my choiced vendor I use for cc processing only allows a 500 dollar PER YEAR amount of Amex purchases. Stupidest thing I've ever heard honestly. For most my clients that's one swipe if the card. So all the time it's not the vendors choice to not take Amex it could be there cc processor.





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cwill
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Member since Jan 2005
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re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


Not everyone has an Amex....everyone has a visa and it's cheaper...what's not to understand?





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Da Hammer
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Folsom
Member since May 2008
2632 posts

re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


So Tigerpawl lets do a hypothetical....

So your Optometrist raises his exam fee by $15 AND his contact lens fees by $15 to offset your complaint about taking Amex. So you return next year and he says I now take AMEX but it costs $30 more this year would you bitch about that? How loyal are you to your Optometrist? If you are going to leave over what card to use I would say not very loyal. In a competition market I would say if your Optometrist raised his fees by $20-$30 many patients would leave as "the guy down the road is cheaper mentality".

In a world of decreasing margins in the medical field I can understand his position. There is almost no markup on contact lenses anymore add decreasing reimbursement from insurance and as a business owner I can see his perspective. We take AMEX in my business however it's a PIA they pay you at least 48-72 hours after the transaction and charge you more for it.






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tigerpawl
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re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


quote:

How loyal are you to your Optometrist?
The presumption here is that the onus always falls on the customer to be loyal, regardless of the level of goods, services and value rendered by the merchant. You're also presuming the merchant is ambitious and has done his homework in building an A+ business model. That may or may not be, and always asking the customer to take a hit for the merchant's shortcomings comes into question. The perception here is that merchants have done everything they can to optimize a cost effective business model. Have they?






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Tigah in the ATL
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Atlanta
Member since Feb 2005
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re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


quote:

Rough estimate is $1.15 difference between his Amex and VISA fees.
would you be ok if he charged you 114.15?

1% is pretty significant margin impact in any business.






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tigerpawl
LSU Fan
Can't get there from here.
Member since Dec 2003
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re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


quote:

would you be ok if he charged you 114.15?

Yes. As mentioned, it's not the trifle difference that I'm annoyed with - it's the lack of convenience and his quibbling position that bother me. Just like he does with VISA/MC, adjust accordingly in the price - and let the customer make the decision on how to pay.... or do business with him at all. We all have our own thresholds of "value".






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BACONisMEATcandy
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My opinions are my own
Member since Dec 2007
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re: This is a pet peeve of mine: Merchants that don't accept American Express


It's more than just the fee though... They would have to increase the price due to higher liability.

So you want the business to increase its prices when people continually flock to the store with the lowest prices. I just don't see it.






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