09:56 18 April 2013
New rules for credit and debit card chargesare being analyzed by the Office of Fair Trading (OFC) and have led to some significant and positive changes in some internet establishments.
One of the main concerns was the travel industry which might sometimes have additional fuel surcharges or other fees that were not previously stated up front, and resulted in unhappy consumers who were surprised when checking out at the difference in quoted costs.
There have been a few benefits from the first phase of this plan to make credit and debit card charges more fair:
There is bound to be additional discussion throughout the year as the OFT attempts to force immediate changes this month, and part of the struggle may be attempting to adequately identify applicable charges.
This can vary a great deal based upon the nature of a business, so the application of a percentage rate, or other formula, may not be sufficient to help curb the costs. At the moment the OFT has requested that the total charges on travel related sites reflect any type of applicable fees in the displayed price, but many travel companies still need to comply.
In addition to this obstacle, the OFT will need to determine the best way to enforce these changes and to fairly judge any complaints against companies who do not comply with the new credit and debit card charges threshold.
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