Time for merchants to use the tools already at their disposal to control
credit card acceptance costs
OTTAWA, Aug. 26, 2013 /CNW/ - The Consumers' Association of Canada (CAC)
released new polling today that shows consumers overwhelmingly support
the decision of the Competition Tribunal to reject a challenge of rules
put in place by MasterCard and Visa to protect consumers.
The challenge was launched by the Competition Bureau and was supported
by merchant lobby organizations, who falsely claimed to be representing
consumer interests in their effort to impose surcharges on credit card
purchases and to obtain the ability to reject certain MasterCard and
Visa cards while accepting others.
"Merchants do not speak for consumers. We have our own voice and our
polling clearly shows it is time for merchants to accept the Tribunal
ruling and drop their campaign to impose anti-consumer policies on
Canadians," stated Bruce Cran, President.
The Harris/Decima poll found 80% of Canadians support the Competition
Tribunal's decision to uphold the rule that prevents merchants from
imposing surcharges on consumers who pay with a credit card. In
addition, 68% of Canadians believe they should not have to worry about
their particular credit card being declined by a merchant. Merchants
oppose a MasterCard and Visa rule that requires them to accept all
credit cards under their brands if they choose to accept that form of
The polling also showed consumers highly value their credit card
rewards, with 68% saying they would be upset with anything that reduced
"Merchants should consider how important rewards are to their customers
before they campaign for measures that would reduce their value,"
stated Cran. "Merchants have been pursuing these anti-consumer
policies for almost five years now. It is time to turn the page and
focus on the tools already at their disposal to control credit card
To that end, the poll revealed that 70% of consumers would be likely to
pay with cash or debit instead of using a credit card if offered a
discount by the merchant - something that is allowed under the
government's Code of Conduct for the Debit and Credit Card Industry in Canada. Another 21% of consumers would be willing to consider it.
"Discounting is a solution that could easily be implemented by merchants
and would avoid alienating their customers. It does not require
regulation, government intervention, changes to the Code, or another
five-year lobbying campaign," suggested Cran.
The polling was conducted between August 8-13, 2013 by Harris/Decima and
involved telephone interviews with 1,000+ Canadians.
Image with caption: "Consumers' Association of Canada Harris/Decima poll August 8-13, 2013 (CNW Group/Consumers' Association of Canada)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20130826_C8091_PHOTO_EN_30111.jpg
Image with caption: "Consumers' Association of Canada Harris/Decima poll August 8-13, 2013 (CNW Group/Consumers' Association of Canada)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20130826_C8091_PHOTO_EN_30112.jpg
SOURCE: Consumers' Association of Canada
For further information:
Bruce Cran, 604-418-8359
Mel Fruitman, 905-832-3909