Author Topic: "I'm never shopping THERE again!" Share your story!  (Read 1143917 times)

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wolfie

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Re: "I'm never shopping THERE again!" Share your story!
« Reply #5760 on: April 15, 2014, 11:28:09 AM »
Thank you! I've never had to swipe the credit card before dining, even with a 3 generation party of 40, but maybe our being in the midwest US and  being seen as 'reasonably dressed polite party' got us by that. Like it or not, people are profiled.

With gasoline, I don't even look. I just follow the instructions on the pump.

Now that I think about it, about 20 years ago we used our credit card to put $20,000 on a purchase and the seller did call to make sure we were good for it. I couldn't look online at the time to view the account, but didn't much care. (We had been saving for the purchase and had a CD coming due before the due date - so no interest charges even!)

Thank you again for your explanations and patience.

It's not that you swipe the card before dining - you swipe the card before adding on the tip. So they aren't sure if you will be paying the $100 they charge and then tipping in cash (or not at all) or if you will put the tip on the card so now it is $115 that they will be charging you.

nuit93

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Re: "I'm never shopping THERE again!" Share your story!
« Reply #5761 on: April 15, 2014, 11:39:58 AM »
I nearly had a heart attack once when I pumped gas at my grocery store's station and saw my account balance was negative because they'd charged me $99 even though I'd only pumped about $10.  Turns out they do the hold thing, and by the time I got into the store to ask about it, the situation resolved itself and my account was no longer in the red. PHEW!

There are gas stations in my area that do this, but they also make it clear in signs next to the pumps that their bank may authorize a higher amount than they actually pump and that they have no control over it (basically "take it up with your bank and don't bug our employees about it").

MissRose

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Re: "I'm never shopping THERE again!" Share your story!
« Reply #5762 on: April 15, 2014, 12:03:14 PM »
I prefer to prepay for gas not at the pump but inside to avoid the hold issues on my cards. I don't mind them for online shopping though.

Yvaine

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Re: "I'm never shopping THERE again!" Share your story!
« Reply #5763 on: April 15, 2014, 12:17:31 PM »
Thank you! I've never had to swipe the credit card before dining, even with a 3 generation party of 40, but maybe our being in the midwest US and  being seen as 'reasonably dressed polite party' got us by that. Like it or not, people are profiled.

With gasoline, I don't even look. I just follow the instructions on the pump.

Now that I think about it, about 20 years ago we used our credit card to put $20,000 on a purchase and the seller did call to make sure we were good for it. I couldn't look online at the time to view the account, but didn't much care. (We had been saving for the purchase and had a CD coming due before the due date - so no interest charges even!)

Thank you again for your explanations and patience.

It's not that you swipe the card before dining - you swipe the card before adding on the tip. So they aren't sure if you will be paying the $100 they charge and then tipping in cash (or not at all) or if you will put the tip on the card so now it is $115 that they will be charging you.

This.

I've taken to using cash in direct proportion to how small the business is. First, a small business is more likely to have an antiquated CC system that does something weird, and second, I figure the fees from the CC company hit them harder too.

Reika

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Re: "I'm never shopping THERE again!" Share your story!
« Reply #5764 on: April 15, 2014, 12:29:22 PM »
Yeah, with small businesses I generally try to use cash only, or debit (I've been told they get less fees for debit than credit).

As for the main subject of thread, I think I might add Igloo to the list. I bought one of their inexpensive ice makers (it had some fabulous reviews) from an online vendor. Worked fantastic the first night I had it, didn't work the second night. Since then I've been trying to get assistance from one of their techs (per their customer service), but so far no luck in getting a hold of one.

Mom even tried calling them for me (I had authorized her and her phone#) and she keeps being told someone will call back. I figure if I don't get anywhere by the end of the week, I'll see what the seller has to say. The only problem is that the original box got thrown out, but I have everything else.

Might end up calling it a learning lesson of who to avoid in the future.

Luci

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Re: "I'm never shopping THERE again!" Share your story!
« Reply #5765 on: April 15, 2014, 01:58:46 PM »
Being a small town, most of the businesses here are one of a kind, so we use cash at those, up to about $200.

We only use the credit card at Walmart and a couple of chain restaurants up by I-80. Even out of town, we still usually tip cash if we only have one server - Applebee's and Olive Garden are examples of where we have many servers.

Even when we vacation, we use cash except for chains and campgrounds. Islamorada, Florida, really sucked up our cash last winter!  :)

Queen of Clubs

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Re: "I'm never shopping THERE again!" Share your story!
« Reply #5766 on: April 15, 2014, 03:59:27 PM »
nytimes.com is on my list right now.  I paid for unlimited access to their site via PayPal and now that I am a paid member, the only way to get that turned off is to call their 1-800 number.  It's not a huge deal, but it would be so much easier to just be able to stop the paid function of my account online. Most other subscription sites offer this service, so I'm not sure why nytimes.com can't.

If it's a recurring charge, you might be able to cancel it via PayPal itself.  I know I had a similar situation, and PayPal gave me the option to cancel it instead of having the amount go out of my account every month.

Kaymyth

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Re: "I'm never shopping THERE again!" Share your story!
« Reply #5767 on: April 15, 2014, 04:13:17 PM »

What is a "hold"? Thanks.

A hold is just another name for a preauthorization.   When I log on my bank's website,  it has my balance and available balance shown.   The available balance is the things I've purchased,  that there is a hold on,  but haven't officially cleared my account yet.

What is a "preauthorization"?

I have had bank accounts and credit cards for 50+ years and have never heard of anything like this except for a deposit of a check taking a week to clear, which now is 2 days with electronics so efficient. My "available balance" is just that, except for not having the deducted whatever they haven't received yet - like the check is in the mail type of thing.

(Sorry. I tried searching and got nothing.)

It's money that's not actually gone from your account yet but that you can't access. It's like the bank saying "This money is still here, but we think you're about to have a charge go through for this amount, so you can't use that money right now."

How do they know? Who is messing in the account? (I wish I had put this in the "little things that don't deserve their own thread", but I'll try this last question. Thanks.)

Nobody's messing in the account except the merchant and the bank/card company. I really don't know what else to say.  :-\

Last question - I promise:  Is this a debit card thing?

If so, Bingo! I'm out of here and will never be affected.

No, I think they do the same thing with credit cards.   It really doesn't have much of an effect unless you're really close to your limit.

Essentially, a "preauthorization" is when the point of sale system dials in to the credit card company to determine whether your card is A) valid and B) has enough on the credit line to cover the transaction.  It comes back with an authorization code and prints the receipt.

Later (usually that night), the merchant "settles" the machine - i.e. they transmit the day's batch of invoices to their credit card processor.  This is the file from which they are paid, and from which the card companies actually bill you.

So the auth shows up and puts a hold on your account.  A day or few later (depending on the processor and how many different companies the invoice has to travel through before it reaches your bank/credit card provider) the actual transaction reaches your account and it resolves into a real charge.


My job involves credit card support for merchants.  I deal with this stuff every day. :)



Kaymyth

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Re: "I'm never shopping THERE again!" Share your story!
« Reply #5768 on: April 15, 2014, 04:16:47 PM »
I nearly had a heart attack once when I pumped gas at my grocery store's station and saw my account balance was negative because they'd charged me $99 even though I'd only pumped about $10.  Turns out they do the hold thing, and by the time I got into the store to ask about it, the situation resolved itself and my account was no longer in the red. PHEW!

There are gas stations in my area that do this, but they also make it clear in signs next to the pumps that their bank may authorize a higher amount than they actually pump and that they have no control over it (basically "take it up with your bank and don't bug our employees about it").

That is....disingenuous of them at best.  The amount is NOT determined by the bank, but is a preprogrammed amount in the pump.  The amount could be set by the merchant location themselves or the processing company they use for their credit card transactions.



Ms_Cellany

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Re: "I'm never shopping THERE again!" Share your story!
« Reply #5769 on: April 15, 2014, 06:17:05 PM »
A friend of mine was day manager at a local Gentleman's Club (strip club). He has a good story from a bad credit-card authorization.

Famous Athlete came to the club and ran up a huge tab.

The next day, Famous Athlete's accountant discovered that FA's card had been charged for BOTH the hold and the actual amount. It all got settled out, no problem.

That evening, Famous Athlete came in with literally a bag of cash, and paid for everything from that.
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Seven Ate Nine

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Re: "I'm never shopping THERE again!" Share your story!
« Reply #5770 on: April 15, 2014, 07:09:56 PM »

Essentially, a "preauthorization" is when the point of sale system dials in to the credit card company to determine whether your card is A) valid and B) has enough on the credit line to cover the transaction.  It comes back with an authorization code and prints the receipt.

Later (usually that night), the merchant "settles" the machine - i.e. they transmit the day's batch of invoices to their credit card processor.  This is the file from which they are paid, and from which the card companies actually bill you.

So the auth shows up and puts a hold on your account.  A day or few later (depending on the processor and how many different companies the invoice has to travel through before it reaches your bank/credit card provider) the actual transaction reaches your account and it resolves into a real charge.


My job involves credit card support for merchants.  I deal with this stuff every day. :)

What happens if a charge is never made?  I know I had (have?) 2 holds from a company that kept telling DH they were unable to charge our CC.  The CC company had no idea what problem they were having because the holds were going through.

Kaymyth

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Re: "I'm never shopping THERE again!" Share your story!
« Reply #5771 on: April 15, 2014, 07:49:49 PM »

Essentially, a "preauthorization" is when the point of sale system dials in to the credit card company to determine whether your card is A) valid and B) has enough on the credit line to cover the transaction.  It comes back with an authorization code and prints the receipt.

Later (usually that night), the merchant "settles" the machine - i.e. they transmit the day's batch of invoices to their credit card processor.  This is the file from which they are paid, and from which the card companies actually bill you.
So the auth shows up and puts a hold on your account.  A day or few later (depending on the processor and how many different companies the invoice has to travel through before it reaches your bank/credit card provider) the actual transaction reaches your account and it resolves into a real charge.


My job involves credit card support for merchants.  I deal with this stuff every day. :)

What happens if a charge is never made?  I know I had (have?) 2 holds from a company that kept telling DH they were unable to charge our CC.  The CC company had no idea what problem they were having because the holds were going through.

The hold drops off of your account after a set number of business days if no invoice settles through; authorization codes actually expire.  How many days varies by card company.



kherbert05

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Re: "I'm never shopping THERE again!" Share your story!
« Reply #5772 on: April 15, 2014, 11:18:45 PM »

IME, usually they'll charge you the full bill (but not the tip) as a hold, bring you the receipt, and then you write in the tip. The hold will often sit there for a few days before the money actually comes out of your account, so that money is kind of in money limbo--it's not available to you, but it's not really "gone" either. Then, whenever the restaurant processes the bill, they'll charge you the amount+tip for real. Sometimes--I think especially when a place has a crotchety old credit card system--there'll be an overlap where the hold sits there for a while even after the money has also come out of your account for real, or there'll be a gap where the hold has vanished but the real charge hasn't happened yet. It's annoying. It's weird for them to charge a random small amount instead, at least for restaurants; I've seen that more often at gas stations. But maybe they just meant it didn't include the tip yet, which is usual.



Is this hold - the same as pending. I know with my bank I called because I had 2 pending charges - same amount same company. I called my bank - and honestly it was yes Ma'am there has been an error. I'm fixing it now but it will take about 2 hours for it to go through and show up on your online account. I checked a little over 2 hours later and it was fixed.


Also I've seen people hear and other places talk about large holds put on their cards at gas stations and hotels. Holds that were larger than the actual purchase but put there before the transaction was completed - and stay there for a while after.


I've never had that happen here. I was wondering if maybe it was a Texas law. I know we used to have banking laws that were very different from the rest of the nation. Like branch banking was illegal here back when I was in HS. A fact that helped save my Aunt when she was carjacked. (carjacker made her drive to her bank to ransom herself. Her bank was a small bank out in Sugar Land. She was able to communicate there was a problem by using wrong names for various people including referring to her daughters and husband. The teller got a supervisor who called the cops.
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RooRoo

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Re: "I'm never shopping THERE again!" Share your story!
« Reply #5773 on: April 16, 2014, 02:06:37 AM »
Could the hold/pre-authorization discussion be moved to its own thread, please?

Thanks!
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iridaceae

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Re: "I'm never shopping THERE again!" Share your story!
« Reply #5774 on: April 16, 2014, 03:43:09 AM »
Hotels are the classic example of the preauthorization. At the hotel I work at at check in (we'll assume this isn't a prepaid third party reservation)  a hold is put on the card tor the total stay for room/tax/resort fee plus X amount per day- it's assumed that you'll charge a meal to your room or hit the gift shop or go crazy in the bar. If you go over the amount the system will ask for an increase from the credit card company.

The night of the day you check out during night audit the system tells the bank "Bob didn't use $150 of the hold; we're releasing that." Then it gets released back but may take some days to do so.