Shopping Discussion

Do I really have to pay the Interac fee?

  • Last Updated:
  • Dec 3rd, 2009 7:49 pm
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Deal Addict
Oct 1, 2008
1593 posts
528 upvotes
brunes wrote: The typical merchant fee for an Interac transaction is 5 or 6 cents. It is a flat fee and not percentage based. There is also a small monthly fee to rent the terminals, but amortized over a month's transactions it is not substantial for any moderately active business.

So if a company is charging 25 cents or 40 cents for a fee, they are taking a profit off of it.
It depends entirely on the agreement you sign with the payment service. I volunteer with a non-profit summer camp -- our kind of organization really only takes payments during half the year, and low-volume ones at that. Therefore when I signed us on with a Visa/MC merchant, our fees were a little different (higher) than your typical store. Interac was offered as an option but the cost (monthly as well as per transaction) was much higher -- and certainly more than 6 cents. In any case Interac was wholly impractical for us since we take the majority of our "orders" (camp applications) through the mail, fax, or online.

I did some quick Googling and 8 or 9 cents was what I found typically (as well as CC rates of about 1.75%). Take into account the monthly terminal fee and I can see why a 25-cent charge might make sense.
Deal Addict
Feb 3, 2008
1665 posts
274 upvotes
Winnipeg
Next time press cancel and then pay with a credit card and the company is charged 2% of the total purchase. I always pay by cc at a restaraunt that charges for debit.
Deal Expert
Jan 7, 2002
21028 posts
14967 upvotes
Waterloo, ON
I don't understand why anyone pays by debit card when they can use a credit card and have up to month to pay. Moreover credit cards offer features like chargebacks, rebates, purchase protection, etc. But I digress...

If you don't want to pay Interac fees then pay with cash or credit card.

As for counting cash, some banks now charge merchants a fee to deposit/count cash, e.g. at TD/CT "cash (paper currency and coin) deposited per $1,000: $2.15." That's a whopping 2.15% fee!

So not only is the merchant paying staff to count, and wasting time going to the bank to make the deposit, but they're also paying the bank to check the count and process the deposit. Accepting credit cards and paying the merchant fee is probably cheaper.
veni, vidi, Visa
Sr. Member
Jul 31, 2004
801 posts
60 upvotes
Vancouver
bylo wrote: As for counting cash, some banks now charge merchants a fee to deposit/count cash, e.g. at TD/CT "cash (paper currency and coin) deposited per $1,000: $2.15." That's a whopping 2.15% fee!
Way off on the math there, that's a 0.215% fee.
Banned
User avatar
Jul 17, 2008
11042 posts
3826 upvotes
Only 1 time I have been charged a fee for using my credit card (not debit), and that was at a pizzeria that was selling slices.
Deal Expert
Jan 7, 2002
21028 posts
14967 upvotes
Waterloo, ON
Wasgo wrote: Way off on the math there, that's a 0.215% fee.
Right you are Image
veni, vidi, Visa
Deal Expert
Jan 15, 2006
15289 posts
12719 upvotes
Richmond Hill
Or the retailer can just jack their prices by $0.40 and not "charge" the interac fee...
Deal Addict
Oct 11, 2007
2270 posts
68 upvotes
Holy crap. Does that mean Pizza Pizza overcharged me? I had a delivery and said I'd pay by Interac. Their fee is $1.50. Because I don't drive, don't have a credit card and did not have enough cash on me but had hungry kids I just shrugged at the fee. Guess they are making me pay for the monthly rental of the interac machine?
Deal Addict
User avatar
Nov 10, 2003
1603 posts
139 upvotes
Hampton
Visa would dearly like to kill Interac in fact and move us to the European style debit card system, which imposes typical Visa credit card fees on the retailer - in the end we all pay for this as retailers jack up prices to incorporate it - and its a lot more than 25c per transaction!! Interac in my view is one of the best systems we have in Canada and I really hope it survives.

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