Hi Lifehacker, The local pizza shop charged me an extra dollar for using EFTPOS even though it was a savings account. I understand a 1 per cent surcharge for credit card but this seems excessive. Is this legal? Thanks, Pizza Penalty
Pizza picture from Shutterstock
There are guidelines around credit card surcharges — specifically that businesses can recover "reasonable" costs associated with using credit cards — but the same rules don't apply to EFTPOS purchases, as we've noted previously. It's also worth noting that smaller businesses often carry a heavier burden for accepting electronic payments due to the lower scale they offer banks, which can often lead to higher costs being passed on to customers.
So yes, as far as I can ascertain (disclaimer: I'm not a lawyer) is that it is indeed legal as long as it's disclosed prominently upfront. Having said that, $1 does seem like a relatively high surcharge in percentage terms unless you're buying a lot of pizza, so the sensible advice here would be to hit an ATM before you head in, or possibly take your business elsewhere.
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