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13 Dec 2021
Yes, you can add a credit card surcharge to customer transactions with confidence. This can offset the cost of your Merchant Service Fees. You can choose the amount that you wish to surcharge by card category and choose the surcharge amount as a percentage or a fixed amount per transaction.
Whilst there are regulations around surcharging in Australia outlined by the RBA, it is completely legal and common practice for merchants to surcharge their customers for card payments.
The main benefit of this is that you, the merchant, can recover the transaction fees that YOU pay every time a customer makes a payment with a credit or debit card. Some businesses choose to absorb these transaction fees as a cost of business, whereas others decide to pass this cost onto the customer in the form of a surcharge. The surcharge is a small fee charged on top of the price of the customer’s goods and services and will either be a percentage of the transaction, dependent on the card being used, or a fixed rate for all card payments.
Research by the RBA found that the average fee for paying with a card is 1% of the value of the transaction, however, if you do plan on surcharging it is important to understand what your “cost of acceptance” is so that you can setup surcharging correctly and you do not fall foul of the law. The RBA set out clear guidelines for businesses wanting to surcharge and you are not permitted to surcharge more than it costs you to accept card payments.
In 2020 merchant services fees topped $4.4 billion in Australia, so it’s no wonder that we see surcharging EFTPOS fees becoming the new normal.
The most important rule is that you do not charge more than what your merchant transaction fees are, and the ACCC are vigilant about enforcing this.
It is also important to note that it is your legal obligation to be open about these charges with your customers, based on Australia Consumer Law. We recommend printing this information on the bottom of menus or on signs near your POS terminals where they can be clearly noticed.
Talk to our customer service team today about how to easily setup surcharges on your merchant facility, or for more information on the specific rules and regulations by which you need to abide.
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