Personal Finance

Why are we still being asked Debit or Credit in 2017?

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  • Jan 30th, 2018 3:36 am
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[OP]
Deal Addict
Feb 21, 2004
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Montreal

Why are we still being asked Debit or Credit in 2017?

Can anyone working in the payment card industry tell me why we are still being asked CREDIT or DEBIT when we flash our cards when it comes time to play? We're in 2017, dont these cards have unique identifiers that a POS system could discern whether its credit or debit?

Was paying something at a drugstore and was asked this. Some business dont but most still do....
38 replies
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Nov 26, 2011
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HoTiCE_ wrote:
Apr 26th, 2017 1:53 pm
Can anyone working in the payment card industry tell me why we are still being asked CREDIT or DEBIT when we flash our cards when it comes time to play? We're in 2017, dont these cards have unique identifiers that a POS system could discern whether its credit or debit?

Was paying something at a drugstore and was asked this. Some business dont but most still do....
Forgot that, I get a lot of people asking me if its MC or Visa.
Deal Expert
Aug 22, 2011
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I posed the same question to a cashier and was told that they had to manunally select VISA, MC, AMEX, or Debit on the POS system; otherwise the transaction will not process.
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May 3, 2015
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masoud100 wrote:
Apr 26th, 2017 2:01 pm
Forgot that, I get a lot of people asking me if its MC or Visa.
Haha, I was going to post the same thing. Which is funny, because when I was younger I don't recall being asked that. I'm like, are these systems getting worse?? Perhaps it has to do with some type of tracking for the vendor.
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Sep 28, 2006
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forget that! Chipotle downtown on yonge street won't take debit at all, only cash and credit!! because the system is American or something and they can't accept Canadian Debit... but no problem accepting Canadian credit cards...?
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Feb 29, 2008
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yatta wrote:
Apr 26th, 2017 4:22 pm
forget that! Chipotle downtown on yonge street won't take debit at all, only cash and credit!! because the system is American or something and they can't accept Canadian Debit... but no problem accepting Canadian credit cards...?
From what I remember from my US travels, Interac is the least of your concerns at CHipotle.
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vkizzle wrote:
Apr 26th, 2017 2:18 pm
I posed the same question to a cashier and was told that they had to manunally select VISA, MC, AMEX, or Debit on the POS system; otherwise the transaction will not process.
Ya that's incorrect, at least for some places.
Often when it comes time to pay, the cashier sees me pull out my card and automatically says "debit"?
I guess I look like a person that wouldn't have a credit card Face With Tears Of Joy.
I just say yes, and off I go tapping my credit card.
Works every time.
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Even at places that I say it's credit card, I never specify Visa Amex or MC and it also goes through no problem.
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Oct 29, 2010
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First of all, debit and credit usually work on different platforms.
Second, they most likely ask because the system they use is old.
Most of the new debit cards I've seen actually use the credit system (Debit Visa or debit MasterCard cards for example).

If you use software based POS, they can most likely detect everything without asking the hardware POS are usually older, just until last week I was tasked with integrating with a hardware based API of a large payment processor, that thing is ancient, their system looks like a combination of DOS and Excel. In that system, everything matters, it's very low level system if you think about it.
Why would they use it? It's more of a direct link to the banks and because of it they usually have lower fees than talking to the newer systems.
Sr. Member
Feb 17, 2017
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yatta wrote:
Apr 26th, 2017 4:22 pm
forget that! Chipotle downtown on yonge street won't take debit at all, only cash and credit!! because the system is American or something and they can't accept Canadian Debit... but no problem accepting Canadian credit cards...?
They don't have chip card readers, so can't take Interac.
[OP]
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Feb 21, 2004
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hvwozq wrote:
Apr 26th, 2017 10:07 pm
That's why they're called POS.
lol touché
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MikeZ13 wrote:
Apr 26th, 2017 4:10 pm
Haha, I was going to post the same thing. Which is funny, because when I was younger I don't recall being asked that. I'm like, are these systems getting worse?? Perhaps it has to do with some type of tracking for the vendor.
They always used to ask that before, not as much now.
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May 3, 2015
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Chickinvic wrote:
Apr 26th, 2017 10:33 pm
They always used to ask that before, not as much now.
Not to me lol
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yatta wrote:
Apr 26th, 2017 4:22 pm
forget that! Chipotle downtown on yonge street won't take debit at all, only cash and credit!! because the system is American or something and they can't accept Canadian Debit... but no problem accepting Canadian credit cards...?
They probably use something like square card reader... Those cannot take debit cards.
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