A savvy merchant knows that being able to accept credit cards from customers is a lucrative part of doing business. The sobering reality of the credit card processing world is that fees associated with swiping credit cards are costly. If implemented correctly, cash discount programs can significantly reduce or eliminate credit card processing fees.

What is Cash Discounting?
Cash discounting is when a business offers a discount to customers who pay by cash, check, or with a pin-based debit card instead of paying with a credit card. Many merchants are exploring cash discount programs with increased enthusiasm as they see a potential to use these programs to negate payment processing fees. Cash discount programs are legal in all 50 states per the Durbin Amendment (part of the 2010 Dodd-Frank Law) which states that businesses are permitted to offer a discount to customers as an incentive for paying with cash.

Cash Discounting Vs. Surcharges
What is a surcharge? A surcharge is when a business posts cash prices, then charges additional fees at the register for processing credit cards. Business owners must be careful not to confuse cash discounting with surcharges, which are illegal in some states. Pin debit card and check card surcharges are illegal in all states. Merchants must post prices for a product or service, then cash discounts come into play when a customer using cash pays less than the posted price. A true cash discount program does not add any fees or surcharges at the time of purchase.

Contact Commonwealth Consulting Group to explore cash discounting as an option for your business. We are knowledgeable in the areas of surcharge rules and requirements and will help you create a program to minimize confusion for your customers, keep your business industry compliant, and, most importantly, save you money.