Warning: Why you need to pay attention when you “tap and go”
Consumers are being warned to keep an eye on additional surcharges that have been tacked on to their contactless payments, which include payments made via payWave or PayPass.
Businesses currently have permission to charge a bit extra for “tap and go” payments due to the fees that are incurred by offering the service, but the law prohibits businesses from making a profit by charging the fee.
According to RateCity’s spokeswoman Sally Tindall, this isn’t always the case. She told Yahoo:
“(Consumers) could be getting hit with unfair surcharges if retailers are doing the wrong thing.”
Tindall has urged consumers not to use contactless payments if they are aware that a surcharge will be incurred.
“A lot of surcharges can be avoided with a bit of planning – always have a little bit of cash with you up your sleeve,” Ms Tindall advised.
The ACCC’s deputy chair Mick Keogh explained that businesses are allowed to charge a flat fee for contactless payments, but it must not exceed what it cost the business to process the transaction.
“Businesses should be careful about imposing a flat fee surcharge where the amount of a transaction is relatively small … In those circumstances the surcharge is likely to be excessive,” Mr Keogh said.