Credit card charges on transactions are a fact of life that many users simply accept, but should you build them into your rates or present them as an additional cost?
If you ‘absorb’ the credit card charges into your rates, there’s no issue for the guest, though it might mean that your rates are slightly higher than those of competitors. Take the additional cost route and, depending on the charges you make, some guests may see this as penny-pinching and may wonder why you are charging them for giving you their business instead of absorbing it yourself.
On the other hand, we’re all well used to paying a booking fee when we reserve tickets for a concert or even a seat on the train! Guests may not see credit card charges as any different.
Ultimately, it’s what you feel comfortable with, unless you’re in the European Union where certain legal conditions apply. For more details, see our earlier blog, ‘Seller Beware!’
If you go the additional cost route, a good rule of thumb is to simply pass on any credit card charges made by the credit card companies. It doesn’t make good business sense to view this as an opportunity to increase your revenues by adding a ‘little extra’ for your time and trouble (and in Europe it isn’t allowed).
As we’re all aware, different payment providers levy different fees so, depending on volume, it may be worthwhile comparing the credit card charges of the different providers before offering to accept their cards. That way, you will get the best rate for your needs.