Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Destinations > Europe > Europe
Reload this Page >

Credit cards usage in Europe : dynamic currency conversion.

Credit cards usage in Europe : dynamic currency conversion.

Old Mar 7, 2013, 8:13 am
  #16  
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 1,762
It is a scam if the merchant does not follow the rules which clearly state the transaction must be carried out in local currency unless the customer agrees to be ripped off by dcc. The terminals (perhaps not in China as somebody points out but throughout Europe) are programmed at the start of the transaction, if the merchant's processor pushes dcc, to state what the amount would be in both local currency and the currency of the credit card and then the cashier must push one of two button on the terminal...yes the customer wants to be ripped off or no the customer is smart and unerstand it is a rip off. Many merchants just instruct their cashiers to assume the customer wants to be ripped off oops wants to pay in his or her currency and that's when the fun can begin.

The sales slip will clearly show both amounts and you will be pressured to sign a statement on the slip stating you were offered a choice and agree to the conversion and this choice is final. Do not sign. Politely ask the clerk to void (not credit) the transaction and do it properly. He may throw out one of the lies such as the amount in your currency is just for your guidance but the transaction is going through in local currency, it's a good rate, it avoids foreign currency fees, he has no control over it, it is required by law, transaction cannot be voided. If he throws out one of these lies, ask to see the manager. The manager may repeat some of the lies or if you're not in Ireland (where this scam began), Scotland, Wales or England you may get the no speak English lie.

What you do is noted above. Do not offer to pay in cash, this plays in to what the merchant is trying to do. Rather circle the local currency amount, cross out your currency amount and write choice not offered. If you have a camera phone, take a picture of the receipt. Somtimes this is the straw that breaks the camel's back. But if it doesn't, when you get home, dispute the charge. You have to win.

Incidentally, Amex does not allow dcc on any of its cards.
JEFFJAGUAR is offline  
Old Mar 28, 2013, 7:44 am
  #17  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: HEL
Programs: lots of shiny metal cards
Posts: 14,022
Originally Posted by spc354
It would make sense to use DCC when traveling in a country where the currency is volatile and tanks on a daily basis (say Zimbabwae... or Iran during a crisis... in other words where you expect the value of the local currency to go down rapidly).
I don't quite follow your reasoning. In such circumstances I would definitely go with the local currency charge, expecting the rate to fall by the time it is handled by the CC.

(btw - afaik the Zimbabwean dollar is a thing of the past )
WilcoRoger is offline  
Old Mar 28, 2013, 5:45 pm
  #18  
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 536
Originally Posted by WilcoRoger
I don't quite follow your reasoning. In such circumstances I would definitely go with the local currency charge, expecting the rate to fall by the time it is handled by the CC.
Also if the local currency is very volatile, most likely everything is priced and charged in some other currency such as USD or EUR anyways.
Kallio is offline  
Old May 29, 2013, 9:32 am
  #19  
Ambassador, Hong Kong and Macau
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: HKG
Programs: Non-top tier Asia Miles member
Posts: 19,602
DCC on cancellable hotel bookings (card absent/card not present)

This is not mine, it's someone I'm assisting with a potential chargeback request.

Previously I've documented how hotels in China (Sheraton Shenzhen Futian) opt-in cardholders for DCC in express checkout (if you insist on signing a slip, the DCC will be voided and a regular RMB slip will be presented).

Today I've seen hotels take things one step further. This was an online cancellable rate booking, booking was in Euros throughout. The booking was made months ago and the hotel charged the cardholder in a card absent (card not present) transaction 2 days prior to check-in:



I didn't edit the signature out - there was no signature. The authorisation to charge was made on the online booking form, so the hotel processed the transaction like a mail/fax/phone order.

In such a situation (cancellable rate being confirmed cos it's past the cancellation window), how can the hotel possibly notify cardholder of the rate, much less agree to it? I don't have to delve into the VIOR (http://usa.visa.com/download/merchan...n.pdf#page=591) but it's patently obvious there can be no possible informed cardholder consent for a charge authorisation to be executed months after it was authorised.

I've never done a chargeback on this but being able to charge DCC on a mail/fax/phone order defeats the only valid point of DCC - knowing the rate in advance http://www.washingtonpost.com/lifest...1f9_story.html . It is a plain ripoff (2.7% scalp over Visa rates including our card fees (4.8% gross)).

Anyone else been DCCed on a mail/phone/fax order?


Edit 2:40AM: The hotel involved decided to comp the DCC scalp to the cardholder in full. So I've struck out its name. Hotel claims their DCC provider has promised them "best rate guarantee" - apparently not. I'm still leaving the other info here, this bank should never have processed a transaction on a mail order-type transaction.

Last edited by percysmith; May 29, 2013 at 1:43 pm
percysmith is offline  
Old May 29, 2013, 9:33 am
  #20  
Ambassador, Hong Kong and Macau
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: HKG
Programs: Non-top tier Asia Miles member
Posts: 19,602
[duplicate post, deleted]
percysmith is offline  
Old May 29, 2013, 10:19 am
  #21  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Anywhere I need to be.
Programs: OW Emerald, *A Gold, NEXUS, GE, ABTC/APEC, South Korea SES, eIACS, PP, Hyatt Diamond
Posts: 16,046
Originally Posted by WilcoRoger
I don't quite follow your reasoning. In such circumstances I would definitely go with the local currency charge, expecting the rate to fall by the time it is handled by the CC.

(btw - afaik the Zimbabwean dollar is a thing of the past )
I would just bring USD and pay with that instead.
AA_EXP09 is offline  
Old May 29, 2013, 10:21 am
  #22  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Anywhere I need to be.
Programs: OW Emerald, *A Gold, NEXUS, GE, ABTC/APEC, South Korea SES, eIACS, PP, Hyatt Diamond
Posts: 16,046
Originally Posted by Captain Schmidt
I've always assumed this to be the case, however I was recently in Portugal and I realised after the fact that one of my charges had used DCC and the payment processed in CHF. Interestingly I got a better exchange rate on the DCC payment than the other transactions that were transacted in Euro that were incurred the same day (and posted to my Mastercard account in CH the same day). I keep meaning to try this again to do another comparison.
How much above the BSR rate was the DCC?
AA_EXP09 is offline  
Old Jul 6, 2013, 6:12 am
  #23  
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Programs: Marriott Platinum, Hilton Diamond, IHG Platinum, Hyatt Explorist
Posts: 3,627
Data point: I was imposed with DCC, without my consent, at the White Hart Inn in Winchcombe, UK, at a rate of 1=$1.62, compared to the credit card's standard rate of about $1.57. I only noticed it after the trip. This was the only case of consentlessly imposed DCC out of about 20 credit card transactions in the UK. I've written to the merchant that it was not acceptable to impose DCC without my consent.
italdesign is offline  
Old Jul 6, 2013, 7:01 am
  #24  
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 1,762
Originally Posted by italdesign
Data point: I was imposed with DCC, without my consent, at the White Hart Inn in Winchcombe, UK, at a rate of 1=$1.62, compared to the credit card's standard rate of about $1.57. I only noticed it after the trip. This was the only case of consentlessly imposed DCC out of about 20 credit card transactions in the UK. I've written to the merchant that it was not acceptable to impose DCC without my consent.
It sounds like this was a hotel. One of the newest tricks that is used and a great deal in the UK is on the check in card hich they push in your face and get you to sign without reading it, they have inserted a line in the middle of it authorizing them to perform the dcc scam on you. Many of the Marriots push this garbage and try to pull it on their customers.

Such deceitful people out there, that's for sure.
JEFFJAGUAR is offline  
Old Jul 7, 2013, 6:48 am
  #25  
Ambassador, Hong Kong and Macau
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: HKG
Programs: Non-top tier Asia Miles member
Posts: 19,602
Originally Posted by JEFFJAGUAR
It sounds like this was a hotel. One of the newest tricks that is used and a great deal in the UK is on the check in card hich they push in your face and get you to sign without reading it, they have inserted a line in the middle of it authorizing them to perform the dcc scam on you. Many of the Marriots push this garbage and try to pull it on their customers.

Such deceitful people out there, that's for sure.
Given it's probably accomodation, this can happen:

1.) before check-in, without card present (prepaid rate or cancellable rate with the cancellable option lapsing): http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/europ...sion-2.html#19

2.) at check-in, when card details taken and the hotel opts you in for express check-out: http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/china...on-56.html#829

As well as 3.) check-out, in a traditional card-present transaction.

Consent is superfluous. After all, here in HK where I live (and Singaporean FTers report the same for Singapore also) it is up to the cardholder to prove he opted out, no matter what the rules (VIOR) say (bank refuses to act on cases where opt-out is proven, and regulators will not compel banks to act unless they are not acting on proven cases).

This is shxt hard for (1) and (2). You really have to persuade the bank to void the card not present charge/express checkout arrangement.

(3) works differently in UK given terminals ask you the cashier for DCC instead of ticking. But even if somehow applied by cashier error, rate will be displayed on the transaction slip and should be a big red flag to ask the cashier to void (if possible) .

With hotels, I'm routinely using my Standard Chartered HK Amex (with a approx 3 Asia Mile/USD earn rate) for prepaid rates and deposits.
Rate might be crap but not for many currencies (GBP and AUD only) and I get a decent earn rate and ease of mind.
Quite hard to figure out whether my spending is qualified spending for other HK Visa/MC promos anyway (normally requires a card-present or an internet purchase transaction, rather than a transaction charged by hand like (1) above).
percysmith is offline  
Old Jul 16, 2013, 3:05 pm
  #26  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 1,203
DCC

As far as user is given a choice, it is buyer beware.

But most of the time, choice is NOT given. Merchant after merchant in UK and elsewhere in europe have told me that DCC is automatic and they dont know how to stop their machine from doing it. Circling local ampount and writing "DCC decline choice not offered" and then disputing the charge seem to be the only way.

Even when choice is given such as Ryanair, it is so hidden and difficult to decline that I consider it as scan in layman's terms.

(when it is small amount, I just swallow it as cost of being a tourist in foreign country or insist on paying by cash)
desi is offline  
Old Jul 16, 2013, 3:42 pm
  #27  
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 1,762
Originally Posted by desi
As far as user is given a choice, it is buyer beware.

But most of the time, choice is NOT given. Merchant after merchant in UK and elsewhere in europe have told me that DCC is automatic and they dont know how to stop their machine from doing it. Circling local ampount and writing "DCC decline choice not offered" and then disputing the charge seem to be the only way.

Even when choice is given such as Ryanair, it is so hidden and difficult to decline that I consider it as scan in layman's terms.

(when it is small amount, I just swallow it as cost of being a tourist in foreign country or insist on paying by cash)
Of course they are liars. There is no other way to describit. When the card is first swiped, assuming it is not an emv card, a message comes up on the terminal asking if the customers wishes to be scammed oops wishes to allow dcc. Now if you're saying that low paid clerks with no loyalty to the outfit are simply taught to press the accept button, I won't argue with you. But every pos terminal has to have the ability to avoid the transaction (what if the clerk enters the wrong amount (accidentally or on purpose)...One time in Holland I got that story and insisted the cashier (she was a waiter) walk through the transaction step by step with me (after voiding the original one) and by and large as soon as the card was swiped, indeed a message came up asking if I wished to pay in US dollars or euro. She told me she had been instructed to press US dollars as a courtesy to the customer (of course she has no idea what a scam this is, she probably has never travelled out of the euro zone in her life) so I told her to press the euro button. She did and voila, the transaction went through in euro only properly.

While we can argue just how much it pays to argue the point at the merchant (yes most of the time the low paid help doesn't have a bloody clue) I always at least make an effort and then go through the marking of the sales slip with dcc declined etc. Now whether it's usually a waste of time, I won't dispute. But I don't like being lied to.
JEFFJAGUAR is offline  
Old Jul 16, 2013, 9:36 pm
  #28  
Ambassador, Hong Kong and Macau
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: HKG
Programs: Non-top tier Asia Miles member
Posts: 19,602
Originally Posted by JEFFJAGUAR
But every pos terminal has to have the ability to avoid the transaction (what if the clerk enters the wrong amount (accidentally or on purpose)...One time in Holland I got that story and insisted the cashier (she was a waiter) walk through the transaction step by step with me (after voiding the original one) and by and large as soon as the card was swiped, indeed a message came up asking if I wished to pay in US dollars or euro.
Void button - in Europe probably yes.

In China, no, there aren't decline buttons, or they're deliberately locked. We in China get worked up enough to handle the terminal directly (behind cashier counters) - the decline button just isn't there.

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/china...l#post15632814
http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/china...l#post17090973

And there's no regulator to ensure compliance. In fact, the regulator is motivated by policy to encourage non-compliance.
percysmith is offline  
Old Nov 19, 2013, 9:58 pm
  #29  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Anywhere I need to be.
Programs: OW Emerald, *A Gold, NEXUS, GE, ABTC/APEC, South Korea SES, eIACS, PP, Hyatt Diamond
Posts: 16,046
Originally Posted by JEFFJAGUAR
It sounds like this was a hotel. One of the newest tricks that is used and a great deal in the UK is on the check in card hich they push in your face and get you to sign without reading it, they have inserted a line in the middle of it authorizing them to perform the dcc scam on you. Many of the Marriots push this garbage and try to pull it on their customers.

Such deceitful people out there, that's for sure.
If you have a chip and pin card (and >99% of UK terminals IME are chip enabled) then you can press cancel before you enter in pin, no?
(though it may print out a cancel receipt and the merchant may demand you give back the terminal...)
AA_EXP09 is offline  
Old Nov 19, 2013, 11:27 pm
  #30  
Ambassador, Hong Kong and Macau
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: HKG
Programs: Non-top tier Asia Miles member
Posts: 19,602
Originally Posted by AA_EXP09
If you have a chip and pin card (and >99% of UK terminals IME are chip enabled) then you can press cancel before you enter in pin, no?
(though it may print out a cancel receipt and the merchant may demand you give back the terminal...)
That's only if you are asked to pay at the end. Tell me what button can be pressed in the following cases:

DCC on internet booking at date of arrival (large hotel chain property in holland http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/europ...l#post20829662 )

DCC on express checkout (Sheraton futian china http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/china...on-56.html#829 )
percysmith is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Manage Preferences - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service -

This site is owned, operated, and maintained by MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Designated trademarks are the property of their respective owners.