Retail is to take over fees for credit card purchases
Starting from 2018, paying by credit card will be free for customers. The retailers will then bear the costs, because they can no longer charge extra fees for card payments, transfers and direct debits.
Currently, businesses often charge a fee when customers use their credit card to pay. This is particularly common in online shopping, especially in the tourism sector, for example when paying for flights and other travel bookings.
On Friday 02 June 2017, it was decided in the Bundestag that from the beginning of 2018 on the most common card payments such as MasterCard, for transfers, and for direct debits, it will no longer be permitted to charge the customer a fee. With this provision, the Bundestag is implementing a requirement of the European Union (EU).
Representatives of the business sector had demanded entitlement to charge the customer fees of varying amounts for the different credit cards. Companies incur different costs depending on the card, which now they can no longer charge.
Consumer protection groups, on the other hand, were concerned about the freedom of choice of customers, who would then have to compare not only the many credit card offerings, but also the information about the fees charged by the different retailers for a specific card. This would simply be impossible with the large number of retailers.
If the new regulation comes into effect from 2018 onwards, retailers will be stuck with the fees charged to them by Mastercard & Co.