Why do BA partner with AMEX?

Old Apr 25, 2017, 6:01 am
  #16  
 
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Originally Posted by beany_bot
I live in Scotland and find a LOT of places won't take it. Any local shops, coffee shops, independent restaurants all don't take it.

Sure big chains (McDonalds etc) do take it. But many local places do not.

Just seems a bit mad they would partner with a CC not widely (certainly compared to VISA and MC) accepted.
Well, the machines used by small business do in fact take Amex, it's usually just the store trying to avoid amex's high fees compared to MC/VISA.

I used to work at a large Scottish retail store, that has a large showroom in every city in Scotland. Policy was to tell customers we didn't take amex. If they didn't have anything else we would get another member of staff, pretend to be makings lots of effort computer and then process the transaction.

I use my Amex around the highlands and 8/9 out of 10 places accept it, or I just used my lloyds avios MC which only earns 0.25 avios per 1.
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Old Apr 25, 2017, 6:01 am
  #17  
 
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Originally Posted by beany_bot
Just seems a bit mad they would partner with a CC not widely (certainly compared to VISA and MC) accepted.
If a large corporation makes a decision that seems a bit mad to you, you're probably failing to understand the reasoning.

i) Amex is able to charge merchants much higher fees than MC/Visa, which in turn allows it to offer more generous avios rates/benefits to you, and provide more revenue to BA. Amex acceptance would probably have to drop well below 50% of card-spend to outweigh this.

ii) You can get an avios-earning MC: https://www.avios.com/gb/en_gb/colle...t-card-account . The feeble earning rate on the MC proves the point. Someone who spends 20k/yr on the Mastercard to collect 5k avios is hardly of value to BA, or be driven to any sort of BA-loyalty (compared to 30k avios on a BAPP Amex).
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Old Apr 25, 2017, 6:02 am
  #18  
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A mixed collection here in JER. Grocery = yes @ Waitrose, no @ Co-op.

A few surprising outlets take Amex, such as a large Garden Centre, but then my usual Wine Merchant doesn't. That's why I also have a Visa card.
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Old Apr 25, 2017, 6:06 am
  #19  
 
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I Understood the commission rates AMEX charged the retailers used to be high ; up to 3.5% but now they have rationalised them to being similar to the mainstream and hence wider acceptance. In a way its good that BA choose a more niche partner rather than VISA etc . The same can't be said for TESCO!

(Has the time come to partner with M&S ; 2 quality brands...... don't go there)

Last edited by allturnleft; Apr 25, 2017 at 6:12 am
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Old Apr 25, 2017, 6:35 am
  #20  
 
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Originally Posted by squawk
It is quite hard to predict Amex acceptance, although in broad brush terms, most large chains (major supermarkets, department stores, restaurants, etc.) will accept it; and often smaller shops or non-chain restaurants will not.

But there are a few dynamics which make this broad categorisation more interesting and at times misleading:

1) Quite a few of we think of as 'chains' are actually franchises or otherwise federated, and in many of these it is hit and miss whether it is accepted or not. For example, I've found some branches of Costa don't accept it; a surprising number of petrol stations don't either.

2) A large number of smaller shops are using iPad-based point of sale systems such as Square. These do support Amex, and I've been able to use it at some really very small places that I had not expected to manage.



Yes, I've come across this quite a lot (even when contactless works for other cards). No idea why this is, I'd have thought it would work the same for all contactless cards?
There seems to be a widespread issue with some card readers in the UK not accepting Amex contactless - despite accepting Amex Chip & PIN. See website for more information. It's unpredictable and very annoying!
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Old Apr 25, 2017, 6:50 am
  #21  
 
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Ive noticed the Nero acceptance is hit and miss, which is entertaining as Nero is always on an AMEX Offer! Perhaps some stores are franchises.
Similarly Costa at hospitals/canteens are almost always franchises and no Amex. As a general rule they use hand-held card reader and you can't scan a costa card using the app, they swipe the physical card.

Originally Posted by IndochineTN
There seems to be a widespread issue with some card readers in the UK not accepting Amex contactless - despite accepting Amex Chip & PIN. See website for more information. It's unpredictable and very annoying!
Indeed. I've found Apple Pay generally gets around it (I imagine Android Wallet would too).

I rarely ask if a company accepts AMEX or not, just wait for the beep of shame and carry on with my Lloyds MasterCard. Its better than getting nothing. Oh for the days when Curve was linked to my Lloyds Amex (I was getting double Avios as it was my first 6 months too). It was short, but sweet!
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Old Apr 25, 2017, 6:51 am
  #22  
 
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Originally Posted by beany_bot
I'm sure this will have been mentioned before but its madness that BRITISH airways partner with a card that's hardly accepted in BRITAIN. Surely Visa or MC would make much more sense. I have no intention what so ever in getting their AMEX card as I had AMEX before and got tired of being told "we don't accept that".
Just seems so odd.
When I got my first Amex (the wonderful bmi one) about 8 years ago, I walked around my local (near London) town seeing who had an Amex sticker in the window....the majority did, certainly most of the chain stores did. Today nearly everywhere I shop accepts Amex. The few places that don't are also the ones that grimace when you try and pay with Visa/MC anyway. Every year new places start taking Amex, and that is only going to improve. Not long ago Ikea didn't take them, now they do.

And of course I can use Amex to take the bus/tube here in London. I certainly think the rest of the country should invest in contactless technology for public transport....dealing with coins getting on a bus just seems so archaic.

All that being said, I don't have a BA Amex as it doesn't work for me, but I do have the "straight up" Amex, plus one from MBNA which comes with a Visa for non-Amex spend. Of course, if you don't shop anywhere that takes Amex, then by all means don't get the card. Or you could change your habits, and make it work!


Originally Posted by T8191
A mixed collection here in JER. Grocery = yes @ Waitrose, no @ Co-op
Co-Op in London and NI certainly take Amex, as do most the cheaper supermarkets (like Iceland) and even Poundland (probably not a BA customer staple!) without a minimum charge.
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Old Apr 25, 2017, 7:01 am
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Originally Posted by beany_bot
I'm sure this will have been mentioned before but its madness that BRITISH airways partner with a card that's hardly accepted in BRITAIN. Surely Visa or MC would make much more sense. I have no intention what so ever in getting their AMEX card as I had AMEX before and got tired of being told "we don't accept that".

Just seems so odd.
Why the BOLD? Visa and Mastercard aren't BRITISH either

Amex is very widely accepted in the UK as most other posters have pointed out. I'm not sure when you had the card to be told everywhere "we don't accept that" as it very rarely happens to me, both online and in store. It works for a substantial number of people, too, given Amex is continuing to grow both in userbase and (subsequently) acceptance.
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Old Apr 25, 2017, 7:16 am
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Originally Posted by mikeyfly
... I did have to provide a lot more "evidence" when making a Qatar booking recently on my Amex. Is this usual ?
Depends. They're OK with my UK issued card, but when I used my US issued corporate one for a booking I got the 3rd degree at DWC at 5am when I arrived to check in. It was such a hassle I won't use my US Amex on QR anymore.

Regarding acceptance, there are a few weird anomalies in the UK. Poundland will take an Amex but B&Q won't, for example. On the whole, however, most retailers I find will take it without a fuss.

When travelling, I find most places in the GCC take it without a fuss, but I can hardly use it at all in the Netherlands. So I always make sure I've got MC/Visa back ups.
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Old Apr 25, 2017, 7:18 am
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Originally Posted by shefgab
Not long ago Ikea didn't take them, now they do.
Same with the Post Office.
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Old Apr 25, 2017, 7:20 am
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Originally Posted by Wozza2404
When travelling, I find most places in the GCC take it without a fuss, but I can hardly use it at all in the Netherlands. So I always make sure I've got MC/Visa back ups.
Abroad, my Amex cards remain stagnant. The ForEx fees (and Amex exchange rate) are ridiculous.
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Old Apr 25, 2017, 7:25 am
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Nearly everywhere takes Amex these days, even Poundland!

I sometimes find that places that claim they don't take it (my butcher for one) either don't want to admit they do (higher fees?) or don't realise that they do until my iPhone processes the transaction with Amex.

The few large places I come across that don't take it are easily be replaced by another that sells exacly the same stuff at identical prices (e.g B&Q/Screwfix, which is the only one I can think of really).

Online I use PayPal linked to Amex if a retailer accepts Paypal but not Amex, athough I'm wary of losing section 75 protection on purchases over 100.
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Old Apr 25, 2017, 7:28 am
  #28  
 
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Originally Posted by Virazuno
Abroad, my Amex cards remain stagnant. The ForEx fees (and Amex exchange rate) are ridiculous.
My initial thought here was 'they're work cards', but thinking about it I do tend to hand over an Amex for personal purchases abroad as well. I should probably look into that.
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Old Apr 25, 2017, 7:31 am
  #29  
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shefgab, we are behind the times here on the rock, and a little bit foreign! Our local Iceland outlets don't take it.
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Old Apr 25, 2017, 7:32 am
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Most KFC don't take Amex

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