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Accepting American Express & Diners Club

Hi all,

I have a credit card terminal to accept Visa & MasterCard for my business. I've also received quotes from American Express/JCB, and Diners Club - although these cost approximately twice what Visa/MC do.

The dilemma is: either accept AMEX & Diners (which may attract new clients), pay the higher fees, but also risk paying higher fees for client payments who were already happily paying by Visa/MC, or: not accept these card types, keep card fees low for existing customers, but risk a potential lost sale.

For those in business, what is your approach and decision towards the card types you accept (and associated fees)?
First a question, What type of business? If your business is high-end or seems to have more high-end customers, the American Express and/or Diner's Club might prove useful as they trend towards those cards. Personally, I won't pay for the privilege of carrying a credit card.
Second question, Have your customers asked to American Express or Diner's Club?
Remember also besides large processing fees, the added monthly statement cost.

Since my business is primarily on-line, so everything goes through PayPal (Visa, MasterCard, American Express & Discover). Yes, a higher processing fee but no monthly fee so it works best for us.
I know exactly what your saying. My parents have there own business and they have been working fine with out using american express or discover. Most people that come tend to use Mastercard or Visa. Those who first pull out an american express or discover also seem to have master and visa and are just as happy either way.

Like Standready said you need to tell us what type of business and such. My parents business is a deli so its less expensive needs therefore not worth it.
Thanks for your input Smile

The industry could generally be defined as corporate entertainment and event management. While AMEX originally offered a much higher rate, I was able to negotiate them down to be only ~0.1% higher than the rate I pay for a corporate Visa or MC, and considering I'm targeting corporate clients, I decided to accept it. There is also no on-going cost - only the transaction fees.

Diners Club on the other hand won't budge on their fee (~1% higher than Amex), but there are no other fees - except for the transaction percentage. Although these cards are more of a rarity in Australia, I'm tempted to set it up as a just-in-case (in case a certain company use DC corp. cards and can't pay any other way), but I doubt I'll promote my acceptance of these cards in any case.

Having said that, another option in Australia is to surcharge for particular types of credit cards (although this is often against merchant agreements or law in other parts of the world, but is legal in Australia). Because my AMEX rate is so close to that of Visa/MC, I don't plan on surcharging for AMEX... although I may consider doing so for Diners.

If you've personally encountered a surcharge for using a credit card (or a surcharge specific to your type of credit card), how do you usually respond (pay surcharge, use a non-surcharged card or cash, cancel purchase etc)?
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