Amazon will stop accepting UK-issued Visa credit cards from Jan.19, the online retail giant said.
He said the move was due to high credit card transaction fees, but said Visa debit cards would still be accepted.
Visa said she was “very disappointed that Amazon threatens to limit consumer choice in the future.”
Amazon said, “The cost of accepting card payments continues to be an obstacle for companies striving to provide the best prices to customers.”
The online retailer said costs are expected to decrease over time due to technological advances, “but instead they continue to stay high or even rise.”
An Amazon spokesperson said the controversy had to do with Visa’s “quite egregious” price hikes over a number of years with no additional value for its service.
Amazon is offering £ 20 for Prime customers to switch from using Visa to an alternative payment method and £ 10 for other customers.
Visa said in a statement that it was “very disappointed that Amazon threatens to limit consumer choice in the future. When consumer choice is limited, no one wins.”
He said he had “a long-standing relationship with Amazon” and was trying to resolve the situation so customers could use Visa credit cards with Amazon UK.
Amazon declined to say how much Visa charges the retailer to process credit card transactions.
Visa also declined to comment, although it said it takes less than 0.1% of the value of a purchase on average.
Amazon and Visa said any fee changes have nothing to do with Brexit.
Both Visa and its rival Mastercard have increased the so-called interchange fee on cross-border transactions between businesses in the UK and the European Union after Brexit.
The dispute between Amazon and Visa has to do with the fees the credit card company charges Amazon for its services in the UK.
This dispute between two corporate titans is now being played out in front of their customers.
Amazon says Visa’s fees are excessive and a barrier to low prices for consumers. Visa claims its rates are competitive, have minimal effect on pricing, and that no one wins when choice is limited.
Whether or not this discussion is about taxes or whether it’s just a smokescreen is largely irrelevant to consumers using these services. They just know they may have to change how they pay on Amazon.
Still, the timing is significant. These customer messages hit hardest when people regularly use Amazon for Christmas shopping.
But it also means that there is still time before January 19 to reach a compromise.
James Andrews, senior editor of personal finance at comparison website Money.co.uk, said the move “will be a blow to the millions of Brits” who use Visa credit cards, including Barclaycard and HSBC customers. .
“With American Express being rejected even by many UK retailers, this means that people looking for rewards on their shopping or trying to split the cost of shopping with a 0% purchase card on Amazon will actually be forced to choose a Mastercard.” , he has declared.
He added that a loyalty card offered by Amazon is “powered by Mastercard”.
Mastercard Executive Vice President Ann Cairns said: “It is very important that customers have choice and have the widest variety of payment options, whether by card, bank or cash, and remember that it is never the consumer who pays commissions. “
“We always talk to Amazon because of course we are two large global companies and Amazon is one of our major customers around the world.”
Retail analyst Steve Dresser said in a tweet that Amazon could aim to reduce Visa fees with its move.
Amazon will stop accepting Visa credit cards from January next year. A challenge when such a large retailer decides to stop accepting payments … With the aim of reducing commissions? pic.twitter.com/vHYUkChO4K
– Steve Dresser (@dresserman) November 17, 2021
The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) said credit card fees “charged by the handful of card providers who dominate the cashless payment space have soared in recent years.”
“Small businesses almost always pay more for card terminals than large corporations, so when the online giants start throwing down the gauntlet, you know the situation is getting critical,” said National FSB Chair Mike. Cherry.
Businesses have had ongoing concerns about credit card fees from major vendors.
Last October, Visa and Mastercard were accused by the British Retail Consortium (BRC) of charging excessive fees. The commercial body said they had doubled in two years.
At the time, the BRC warned that retailers would be forced to pass the costs on to consumers, with credit card bills rising to £ 40.
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