Canadian Pizza Magazine

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Survey finds card fees worry business owners


October 31, 2013
By Canadian Pizza

Oct. 31, 2013, Toronto – The rising cost of accepting credit cards is raising concerns with Canadian restaurateurs, shows a new survey.

The Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association (CRFA) found that 97 per cent of CRFA members are “very concerned” about rising credit card transactions with 79 per cent saying card fees have a “significant impact” on their bottom line.

Seventy-two per cent do not fully understand the merchant fees they pay.

“Credit card fees in Canada have spiraled out of control and are now among the highest in the world. Clearly there’s a problem when banks and credit card companies are making as much money on a restaurant transaction as the restaurateur is,” said Garth Whyte, CRFA president and CEO, in a news release.

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Survey respondents also communicated frustration since fees not only apply to the cost of the meal, but also to the sales tax as well as tips.
The credit card fees collected on sales tax in the restaurant industry alone add up to $40 million a year for banks and credit card companies.

“We received an incredibly strong response from our members on this issue, and the message is loud and clear: it’s time for Canada to rein in the Wild West of premium credit card fees,” continued Whyte. “Many other countries have already taken regulatory action.”

CRFA is again calling on the federal government to regulate merchant fees and is meeting with stakeholders to push for other solutions.