Sorry – No Credit Cards for Orders Under $15!!

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About a month ago, I went to a Thailand restaurant (picture below) at Matsonford Road. It was lunch time and I happily ordered the set menu, which cost about $7 or so. The lunch was ok, a nice spicy soup, noodles and a small desert.

Well, when it was time to pay, I produced my credit card (my Blue Cash to be precise). Lo and behold, the waitress said they did not accept any credit card for orders below $15.00 ! This was how the conversation went.

Waitress : Sorry Sir, but we do not accept credit cards for orders below $15.00.

Mr Credit Card : Where did that come from?

Waitress : We have stated that clearly at the door!

Mr Credit Card : Well, I did not see it and I do not carry cash. So you have to accept my credit card.

Waitress : Let me speak to my manager.

Manager : Sir, I’m very sorry but we do not accept credit cards for orders under $15.00.

Mr Credit Card : Well, I’, very sorry as well because I have no cash in my wallet and I do not carry my bank card around.

Manager : Well, there is an ATM machine across the road. You can use your credit card to withdraw cash.

Mr Credit Card : Well, I do not know my pin number and I don’t withdraw cash from a credit card (fees are too high).

Manager : In that case sir, we will have to charge you $15.00 for your meal.

Mr Credit Card : In that case, I will be walking out of here and paying nothing. It’s not that I do not want to pay, but I only have my credit card!

(I literally got up and was about to leave when they changed their minds).

Manager : OK Sir, we will make an exception this time. Please remember the next time you come here.

Mr Credit Card : Well, there won’t be a next time even though your food is quite good!

Moments later, when she gave me the bill for me to sign.

Manager : Sir, I hope you were not angry!!!

What idiots these jokers were! If they cannot cover the cost of a credit card charge, then raise the prices of the set lunch. I wonder how many customers have they pissed off because of this stupid credit card issue.

Anyway, a couple of weeks later, I was at the same area and this time I took my digital camera and took a few shots of the restaurant from outside. I did not find any sign saying credit cards are not accepted for orders below $15. But even if there was a sign that specifically said that, that was no way to treat a customer. They could have made the exception right from the start and explained to me nicely that in future, they would rather get paid in cash for orders below a certain amount.

Thai Restaurant
Thai Restaurant 2

Well, I’ll finally reveal the name of the restaurant – ChiangMai by Matsonford Road off Highway 476 (Exit 16) in PA. You can even see the number at the sign! They clearly stated that they accepted Visa, Mastercard or Discover (no Amex). But they sure handled me the wrong way. And I really guess you do not want to p*ss off Mr Credit Card when it comes to credit card payments!

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5 Responses to “Sorry – No Credit Cards for Orders Under $15!!”

  1. Ray Says:

    That’s pretty idiotic of them to set that high of a limit. I can understand they wouldn’t want lots of $1-$2 transactions as fees can be 2-3% + .15 to .25 per transaction and that is where they would be losing money over larger charges.

    I don’t think a $5 minimum especially at a restaurant is a bad idea, but $15 is just not worth it, to cover an additional cost of .15 to .25 per transaction fee.

    I think you should eat there again and have someone else pay for the meal that’s under $15 and do the same thing, especially since there is not sign anywhere.

  2. unconflictive credit cardholder Says:

    You are very persistent person! if I were you i would just pay 15$. I know that you are right and thanks to me (and people like me) we have such quality of service. But i hate conflicts and try to avoid them even somebody swindles me.

  3. Ramiro Says:

    Next time you run into this type of situation, contact Visa/Mastercard and report them. They are required, under written contract, not to charge a minimum. They can be penalized and stripped of their credit card acceptance service.

    Great example article.

  4. billybob Says:

    unfortunately, visa and mastercard do not care if the the owner generates money. I work with the bank. the business does loose money under 5-10 depending on their rate.

  5. Callow Says:

    I haven’t researched this much, but there is a merchantcouncil article about this kind of thing. According to them, American Express is the one card issuer that doesn’t forbid minimum purchase requirements. If true, the card you tried to use is the one card you had no leg to stand on as far as your complaint goes.

    Another interesting thing the article stated is that merchants can if they wish indeed raise their prices, and then give discounts if you pay cash. I never seem to see this though. Frankly I’d love to skip the whole rewards game and just pay less for things by using cash.

    http://www.merchantcouncil.org/merchant-account/operation/charge-minimum-pay-credit-card.php

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