AmEx Acceptance

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Robrus1
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AmEx Acceptance

Postby Robrus1 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 8:37 am

I'm starting to wonder a bit about the future of AmEx, as far as being a practical card to carry. I've been seeing signs similar to this one, which I saw this morning at my local coffee shop that I go to every morning. It is locally owned but there are several locations and business is very good. I read on this forum about layoffs too. Has anyone else been noticing businesses dropping AmEx? Did they raise their merchant/swipe fees or something?
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Postby DavidNY » Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:33 am

Globally, Visa is accepted at twice the locations of Amex. I wouldn't recommend going solo with them.

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Socelli
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Postby Socelli » Thu Jan 17, 2013 11:33 am

Clearly Amex is going through difficult times. Especially with the financial climate that's engulfing the U.S. today. But I just CANNOT imagine an America without American Express. But sadly, somebody probably said the same thing about PanAm, TWA, Standard Oil, etc. "They're American business icons. They can't fail." Amex will survive. Just like what they said about the New York Times, predicting the demise of it's paper edition year after year. Amex (and the NYT) will do just fine. They aren't going anywhere.
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Terry
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Postby Terry » Thu Jan 17, 2013 12:02 pm

Robrus1 wrote:I'm starting to wonder a bit about the future of AmEx, as far as being a practical card to carry. I've been seeing signs similar to this one, which I saw this morning at my local coffee shop that I go to every morning. It is locally owned but there are several locations and business is very good. I read on this forum about layoffs too. Has anyone else been noticing businesses dropping AmEx? Did they raise their merchant/swipe fees or something?



I have not noticed signs about AMEX no longer accepted in this area. My policy is that if a merchant does not accept AMEX, they will not get my business. Some merchants think that not taking that card will save money, the reality is that they will actually loose business and therefore competitor shopping is practice many loyal AMEX customers follow.
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Postby Reclusive46 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 12:24 pm

Things may be stagnent for Amex in the US but in countries like the UK and Germany, usage and acceptance has skyrocketed.
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Robrus1
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Postby Robrus1 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 1:18 pm

Reclusive46 wrote:Things may be stagnent for Amex in the US but in countries like the UK and Germany, usage and acceptance has skyrocketed.


I find this interesting. What networks are the most widely accepted in the UK? I may be vacationing, or "going on holiday," haha, there this year.
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Postby jrv » Thu Jan 17, 2013 2:12 pm

Terry wrote:I have not noticed signs about AMEX no longer accepted in this area. My policy is that if a merchant does not accept AMEX, they will not get my business. Some merchants think that not taking that card will save money, the reality is that they will actually loose business and therefore competitor shopping is practice many loyal AMEX customers follow.


I agree. Especially when AMEX customers spend almost 4 times as much as Visa & MasterCard account holders. However, I do carry a Visa just in case.
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Postby nomnomnom » Thu Jan 17, 2013 2:58 pm

Terry wrote:I have not noticed signs about AMEX no longer accepted in this area. My policy is that if a merchant does not accept AMEX, they will not get my business. Some merchants think that not taking that card will save money, the reality is that they will actually loose business and therefore competitor shopping is practice many loyal AMEX customers follow.


+1. Lack of a particular card acceptance doesn't always deter my business, but sometimes if there is a choice I definitely lean towards the AmEx-accepting place.

But between that and horror stories I've heard of AmEx dropping CL's or accounts entirely on a whim, I keep multiple merchant cards on me at a time (ESPECIALLY when traveling) just to feel secure.
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DoingHomework
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Postby DoingHomework » Thu Jan 17, 2013 3:27 pm

I don't think Amex is facing hard times. Their profits are up. They are just laying people off to plan for future industry trends.

As for acceptance, it is probably basically stagnant. The coffee shop you saw the sign at probably switched merchant banks and was too cheap to pay the fees for accepting checks and Amex.

.Plenty of other places are adding Amex to what they accept and a few places no longer accept Visa because of changes in policies. You'll see signs like this occasionally everywhere but it does not necessarily indicate a widespread trend.

Reclusive46
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Postby Reclusive46 » Fri Jan 18, 2013 6:32 am

Robrus1 wrote:I find this interesting. What networks are the most widely accepted in the UK? I may be vacationing, or "going on holiday," haha, there this year.


Visa and MasterCard are accepted pretty much everywhere. Most credit/charge cards in the UK are Amex or MC. American Express is accepted in most places, it is accepted at All supermarkets (Apart from Lidl/Aldi as they only take debit cards but they are not many of these anyway), all major petrol stations (Some really rural country Jet branded ones don't), most restaurants (The odd chinese won't), most chain shops (Apart from Shoe shops, Amex don't seem to be liked by them) and a lot of the little small shops (Beware some of the smaller shops don't even know they take it, so they will often so no even if they do), Discover/Diners is accepted at most supermarkets and some restaurants and shops. Amex is quite widely used in UK but Diners is not. Also some places like Buses will only take contactless cards.

If you don't have an EMV card, most EMV readers have a magstripe slot at the top or on the side. Some you dip in like you would a EMV card then pull out.

Last time I checked Amex had a 97% acceptance rate compared to Visa and MC (So 97% of the places Visa was accepted, Amex was as well). This has shop up from 93% last year. It has become much more popular as Lloyds, Virgin Money and MBNA now all issue Amex branded credit cards and Amex issues some of the best cashback and reward cards on the UK market.
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