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Eftpos ridiculousness

By 28 December 2012 42

Monsieur Cholet decided that we should take Master Cholet to do a spot of swimming on Boxing Day. We decided to give Woden pool a try for the first time, seeing as Erindale was closed and Tuggeranong centre never looks like it gets the once over with a wet cloth.

Had no cash on us, so took a punt that it would take Eftpos, and resolved that we would go and get cash if needed. Checked out the website before hand, but it gave us no idea either way.

Upon arrival I noted the Eftpos signage and breathed a sigh of relief but was very quickly informed that expenditure of $30 was required to use Eftpos or credit card. Whilst the chap on the counter said he would process our slightly over $10 fee electronically this once, he took exception when I suggested that $30 is a bit steep to hold customers to in this age of the cashless society. $30 by the way at Woden is the equivalent to about 5 adults swimming.

He went on to inform me that electronic transactions are no good when you have lots of people waiting to enter the establishment. To which I responded that if can manage it then perhaps they too could consider reducing the limit in the interests of customer service. How long for heavens sake does an electronic transaction take? 30 seconds?

This is not the first time I have encountered retailers and service providers in this town who have odd policies over what they will and will not accept by way of electronic payment, and by odd I mean not the standard and mostly accepted $10 limit. A newsagent in town close to my office used to only accept cash for bus tickets. And that was over $20 a pop or more each time. Needless to say I avoided his business.

It’s not a problem to carry cash most of the time and if I have it I will use it and obviously one can always avoid such retailers, but just wondering if in this climate they can be afford I be so choosy.

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42 Responses to
Eftpos ridiculousness
arescarti42 3:31 pm
28 Dec 12
#1

AFAIK, any retailer that accepts Mastercard/Visa and has a minimum transaction amount is breaching the terms of their contract with Mastercard/Visa (for Mastercard/Visa purchases).

The ones that really piss me off are cafes and the like that display credit card logos, and then only tell you that they have an electronic payment minimum after you’ve eaten.

As for the speed of transactions, in my experience, they vary greatly depending on the POS terminal used. The contactless terminals at my local Coles take literally less than 5 seconds to read the card and process the payment. The ancient looking NAB one at the Subway at the ANU takes probably 15-25 seconds (which is actually a huge delay for a business like that when cash takes maybe 5-10 seconds).

I appreciate that Mastercard/Visa slug merchants for using electronic payment, but I personally hate carrying around cash, and as such avoid businesses with EFTPOS minimums.

Masquara 3:48 pm
28 Dec 12
#2

Viz. the cafe at the National Library – Bookplate – you can’t put an $18 lunch for one on a card …they make you trudge downstairs and pay $2.50 fee to get some cash out of the ATM …

chewy14 4:03 pm
28 Dec 12
#3

I thought the minimum was simply due to the amount that the retailer gets charged for using EFTPOS/Credit card?

Under a certain amount, it’s eating into their profits.

I don’t think it’s asking too much for people to have a few physical dollars in their wallet.

I personally hate going to the shops, lining up behind people who use their cards for every little transaction.

screaming banshee 4:25 pm
28 Dec 12
#4

My merchant charges are 5c for each eftpos transaction and 0.64% of any MasterCard/visa transaction. Regardless of whether its $10 or $10,000, it’s 0.64%. I understand fees for Amex because their merchant fees are ridiculous but considering the reduction in risk associated with handling less cash and the reduction in counting/banking costs I think it’s pretty rude to be charging a surcharge on the non-Amex transactions.

Madam Cholet 4:47 pm
28 Dec 12
#5

I meant to say “if MacDonalds can manage Eftpos then perhaps they can. ” The word fell off of the screen somehow. Back at Philip pool right now and this time with nice crisp 50 dollar note. And not a queue of desperate swimmers in sight.

Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd 5:27 pm
28 Dec 12
#6

I guess the moral of story is never go to Phillip pool?

trevar 5:28 pm
28 Dec 12
#7

Madam Cholet said :

Back at Philip pool right now and this time with nice crisp 50 dollar note. And not a queue of desperate swimmers in sight.

LOL I hope you’re timing how long it will take them to change a Golden Drink Voucher; make sure you report back to us.

I don’t think it makes a significant enough difference to concern ourselves over the time involved. Even cash has the drawback that every few minutes at a busy place the attendant needs to stop and crack one of those little change thingies open, which always seems to happen right before it’s my turn to use my paywave card. I’ll admit to getting frustrated, but I also feel guilty for my frustration 30 seconds later when I’m on my way.

I think a $10 minimum is reasonable, anything higher than that is obnoxious. But the worst offenders are those who charge a percentage as a surcharge; that’s just pure extortion! I’ll happily pay another dollar for the convenience of not having to have cash on hand, but every time someone stings me over $20 for a $2000 transaction for using a card, someone gets added to my hate list.

Rangi 6:02 pm
28 Dec 12
#8

So he let you do the transaction, that was under their limit, but you continued to whinge and hassle him….nice

How_Canberran 6:25 pm
28 Dec 12
#9

Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd said :

I guess the moral of story is never go to Phillip pool?

Spot on!

An expenditure of $30 require to use EFTPOS? Walk away!
Lousy service in a shop? Walk away!
“Your call is important to us”. Hang up!

Canberra retailers will never get the message with consumers suffering these imposts. Blubbering about the experience on RA will not help either. And dont get me started on ‘no bicycle bells’.

How Canberran

Genie 6:43 pm
28 Dec 12
#10

screaming banshee said :

My merchant charges are 5c for each eftpos transaction and 0.64% of any MasterCard/visa transaction. Regardless of whether its $10 or $10,000, it’s 0.64%. I understand fees for Amex because their merchant fees are ridiculous but considering the reduction in risk associated with handling less cash and the reduction in counting/banking costs I think it’s pretty rude to be charging a surcharge on the non-Amex transactions.

As of 1st Jan retailers can no longer “make a profit” from eftpos transaction fees. They can only charge you what the bank will actually charge them. Eg the 0.64% you mentioned above not the 1.5% most places charge.

This also includes the $7.95 credit card transaction fee that airlines and ticket agencies charge for purchasing stuff online.

birder 7:11 pm
28 Dec 12
#11

I really despise the EFTPOS minimums. I know some people won’t like to hear this, but in the US and in New Zealand, there are no minimums. How come the Kiwis can do it but Australia can’t?

When we first moved here, we got caught out several times with no cash. I ordered a salad from someplace in the Tuggeranong mall. They made it up for me and then when I tried to pay with my card, they said, “Cash only.” I said, “What do you mean, cash only? Where’s your sign?” They had no sign that said cash only, but they wanted me to go to the cash machine nearby to take out cash, or else the salad would be wasted. I said, “So are you going to discount the salad by the $2.50 I’m going to have to pay to take out cash?” Of course their answer was no. I told them that since they had no sign and had given no warning, they could eat the cost of the salad and I walked away.

These days, I always carry cash. But I do find it ridiculous that I can’t use my card to pay for stuff in many places, or that they have crazy minimums. Especially because of my experiences elsewhere (in the US and NZ).

thy_dungeonman 7:59 pm
28 Dec 12
#12

Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd said :

I guess the moral of story is never go to Phillip pool?

I called up Phillip pool the other week since they were looking for kiosk attendants in the newspaper. They told me that they actually wanted a middle aged woman (which I am not) and hung up.

rosscoact 8:10 pm
28 Dec 12
#13

In many cases the minimum EFTPOS amounts are set with the express intention of upselling to people making small purchases.

Madam Cholet 8:37 pm
28 Dec 12
#14

Rangi said :

So he let you do the transaction, that was under their limit, but you continued to whinge and hassle him….nice

Where did I say that I whinged and hassled him?

Alderney 8:56 pm
28 Dec 12
#15

Madam Cholet said :

Rangi said :

So he let you do the transaction, that was under their limit, but you continued to whinge and hassle him….nice

Where did I say that I whinged and hassled him?

Dialogue is a foreign concept to some.

Martlark 9:23 pm
28 Dec 12
#16

I always buy my chocolate bar with Amex at 7-Eleven, and use if for Fredo frogs at Coles. Cash is for drug dealers, tax cheating tradies and centre link faudsters.

thatsnotme 9:38 pm
28 Dec 12
#17

I’m constantly amazed at the number of businesses that refuse to take your cash, simply because it’s presented the wrong way. We keep hearing about how tough retailers have it, yet when you try to buy something from them using a card, it’s too much trouble.

As mentioned before, the eftpos fee is something like 5 cents. For the normal $10 minimum you see so much of, that’s 0.5% of the purchase price. Lets say it takes half an hour to count the days takings, take the cash to the bank, and deposit it. You’re probably – being conservative – looking at $20 in staff costs to do that work. That’s the equivalent of 400 eftpos purchases.

The question I have, is why cash isn’t the payment method with a surcharge these days! Employee petty theft, robberies, counting and banking costs…seems to me that 5 cents per transaction is a bit of a bargain to reduce those risks – especially when you’ve already got a fixed cost to have access to the terminal, and choose to not use it.

s-s-a 10:12 pm
28 Dec 12
#18

The other super thing about Phillip Pool (at least when I last considered going there) is that there is no concession rate and you have to pay for infants. The one and only time I went there the pool was ok but the change rooms gross.

It’s the closest pool to where I live but has been on my black list ever since.

kea 10:22 pm
28 Dec 12
#19

s-s-a said :

The other super thing about Phillip Pool (at least when I last considered going there) is that there is no concession rate and you have to pay for infants. The one and only time I went there the pool was ok but the change rooms gross.

It’s the closest pool to where I live but has been on my black list ever since.

I tried taking my 10 year old after work at the end of last year and they wouldn’t let us in.. it was a stinking hot day and we really wanted to go for a swim.. apparently after 5pm they don’t let kids in..

DrKoresh 11:33 pm
28 Dec 12
#20

kea said :

It’s the closest pool to where I live but has been on my black list ever since.

I tried taking my 10 year old after work at the end of last year and they wouldn’t let us in.. it was a stinking hot day and we really wanted to go for a swim.. apparently after 5pm they don’t let kids in..

That sounds like the best thing ever! The worst thing about public pools are all the filthy children pissing in them. This is the one just opposite Westfield Woden, yeah? I should check it out.

Alderney 8:28 am
29 Dec 12
#21

thy_dungeonman said :

Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd said :

I guess the moral of story is never go to Phillip pool?

I called up Phillip pool the other week since they were looking for kiosk attendants in the newspaper. They told me that they actually wanted a middle aged woman (which I am not) and hung up.

They still have the sign up in the kiosk. Call them again and when they say that, tell them it’s discrimination and that you will report them. Or tell them you are a middle age woman and that you are offended that they obviously thought you were a man!

keiran 10:03 am
29 Dec 12
#22

Try taking a taxi with a cabcharge machine. 10% is charged to the customers card.

Spykler 10:44 am
29 Dec 12
#23

Martlark said :

I always buy my chocolate bar with Amex at 7-Eleven, and use if for Fredo frogs at Coles. Cash is for drug dealers, tax cheating tradies and centre link faudsters.

Cash is so passe’- once King Fook Chinese Restaurant in Florey entered the modern world and finally relented and installed an EFTPOS terminal, I suspected that was the death knell for the folding stuff.

LSWCHP 1:46 pm
29 Dec 12
#24

Spykler said :

Martlark said :

I always buy my chocolate bar with Amex at 7-Eleven, and use if for Fredo frogs at Coles. Cash is for drug dealers, tax cheating tradies and centre link faudsters.

Cash is so passe’- once King Fook Chinese Restaurant in Florey entered the modern world and finally relented and installed an EFTPOS terminal, I suspected that was the death knell for the folding stuff.

Gold! :-)

I used to live in Florey, and bought a lot of takeaway from King Fook, with cash. I went there for the first time in a few years with the family last week, and lo-and-bloody-behold, they had EFTPOS. The times certainly are a-changin’!

DanielK 2:32 pm
29 Dec 12
#25

I’m sorry but for the life of me I cannot understand all this hoo ha about EFTPOS limits. Unhygienic change rooms, yes;overflowing rubbish bins, yes; discriminatory practices against children, yes; but the fact that they encorage cash rather than card (possibly toreduce tax???) and then to spend a good part of the day whingeing about it, whether OP or someone else…….. really! hopefully Master Cholet can swim.

c_c™ 2:59 pm
29 Dec 12
#26

arescarti42 said :

I appreciate that Mastercard/Visa slug merchants for using electronic payment, but I personally hate carrying around cash, and as such avoid businesses with EFTPOS minimums.

Short of it is you’re lazy but don’t want to pay for convenience.
Because cash is soooo heavy to cart around.

DrKoresh 4:00 pm
29 Dec 12
#27

c_c™ said :

Short of it is you’re lazy but don’t want to pay for convenience.
Because cash is soooo heavy to cart around.

lol, true facts :D

goggles13 4:58 pm
29 Dec 12
#28

Spykler said :

Martlark said :

I always buy my chocolate bar with Amex at 7-Eleven, and use if for Fredo frogs at Coles. Cash is for drug dealers, tax cheating tradies and centre link faudsters.

Cash is so passe’- once King Fook Chinese Restaurant in Florey entered the modern world and finally relented and installed an EFTPOS terminal, I suspected that was the death knell for the folding stuff.

Erindale takeaway still only accepts cash

LegalNut 8:13 pm
29 Dec 12
#29

EFT transactions just seem like a no brainer from my point of view. There is less risk of mishandling and theft and it is quicker that having people diving through their wallet/purse/bag for change (especially if using Tap and Go technology). The fees are relatively minimal if you push enough through it (eg 5c for debit and 0.7% for credit) and are offset by the benefits gained.

As for the “but it is just so easy to carry cash” argument. I disagree. The ability to carry one single piece of plastic that can be used for all transactions is easier than carrying a range of notes and coins which can be heavy and bulky.

Frankly, the only genuine reason for a business to refuse to accept cards is if they run two sets of books and that isn’t something I particularly want to support.

thatsnotme 10:09 pm
29 Dec 12
#30

c_c™ said :

arescarti42 said :

I appreciate that Mastercard/Visa slug merchants for using electronic payment, but I personally hate carrying around cash, and as such avoid businesses with EFTPOS minimums.

Short of it is you’re lazy but don’t want to pay for convenience.
Because cash is soooo heavy to cart around.

Seriously, you’re equating not liking carrying around cash with the weight of it? Congratulations, this post has now officially jumped the shark.

I’d be happy to pay for the convenience of using EFTPOS. It’d make life a heap easier if instead of the stupid ‘$10 minimum’ signs, I could choose to cover the 5c fee myself, and pay with a card. Because cash is annoying. My bank – Suncorp, who I use because of my home loan – have very few ATM’s I can use for free. Cash often ends up costing me money – and a hell of a lot more than the 5 cents a business has to wear when I use EFTPOS to purchase something.

I have noticed in recent times more businesses with EFTPOS signs on their windows, advertising the fact they have no minimum purchases. I don’t know whether there is any incentive from EFTPOS to do this, but it’s appreciated, in the same way I know I can head to Coles or Woolworths and buy whatever I need, and pay with a card without needing to worry about how much it will cost.

I really hope that it won’t be too long before this is normal, and cash can go the way of the dodo. I’m sure generations of 24 hour service station employees would agree.

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