For consumers, using plastic can be a hassle when a vendor requires a minimum payment for purchases. However, many merchants violate their contracts by setting a minimum when the credit card company does not require one. However, new legislation may change this in the near future.
Visa’s official website now states, “U.S. retailers may require a minimum purchase amount on credit card transactions.” Minimum purchase amounts must not exceed $10, American Consumer News reports. However, this does not apply to transactions made with a debit card. This led Consumerist.com, a credit card news site, to look into other issuers’ stances on minimum purchases.
American Express said it found it acceptable to require a minimum purchase amount if all cards are subject to the same restrictions. MasterCard, which currently does not have a minimum, says it plans on changing this in the future.
Minimum payments may affect where consumers choose to shop, but creating a standard for all issuers across the board may eliminate this factor later down the line.