Twice a year – in April and October – Visa, Mastercard, Discover, and AmEx release updates to their programs and fee structures. For your convenience, below is a summary of the changes that will have the most impact on merchants. A complete list of the card brand changes can be accessed here.
As always, Wind River Financial believes in transparency of all association fees applicable to merchant processing costs and passes through these new fees to our customers with no mark-ups or changes.
The maximum amount a merchant can surcharge a credit card transaction has been reduced from 4% to 3%. In addition, the requirement to notify Visa 30 days in advance of implementing a surcharge program has been removed. Only acquirers need to receive the advance notification.
Visa is removing Healthcare MCCs from the Corporate Non-Travel Level 2 and 3 interchange programs for GSA Corporate cards.
These transactions will now only qualify for the other existing Corporate Card interchange programs:
Visa is dividing its consumer reward card programs into 32 distinct interchange programs. This enables acquirers and issuers to track reward card usage by type (e.g. Signature, Signature Preferred, etc.) At present, no changes in the rates for these cards have been announced.
In an effort to improve transaction integrity and ensure the use of EMV terminals, Visa is adding a new fee of $.10 for Mag Stripe Data contactless transactions.
The new CVV2 fee of $0.0025 will be assessed on all transactions that result in a match or no match except when the authorization cannot be verified or when an attempt results in an error response.
Visa is reducing AVS from 17 values to six values. See chart below. There are no changes necessary to merchant processing environments to adjust for these reduced values.
All merchants will now be allowed to submit estimated and incremental authorizations at an additional cost of 0.02% for each. The exceptions are account funding transactions, ATM or manual cash disbursements, installments, advance payments, recurring transactions or quasi-cash transactions.
Mastercard has announced the creation of a new commercial credit program for the Mastercard Solution Wholesale Travel Program. This has resulted in new reduced rates.
Mastercard’s NABU fee will now apply to all authorization responses at point of authorization rather than at the point of settlement. The fee has not been changed.
Discover is changing its rates on several programs as indicated in the chart below.
The cashback amount at checkout is increasing to $120 – up from the current amount of $100. Merchants may opt to retain the lower cashback amount, if desired.
The Program Integrity Fee that applies on every transaction with U.S. Base Submission Level is increasing to $.10 – up from $.05 per transaction.