Credit Card Etiquette (Part I)

Whether you’re a merchant or a customer, it’s always important to maintain proper credit card etiquette. When you convey tact and class to your customer base, or even another merchant, you are telling them – without saying a word – all about the true level of professionalism regarding such matters. At Vision Payment Solutions, we love educating and informing our clientele. In part one of our three-part series on credit card etiquette, you’ll learn some fundamental guidelines of the credit card-processing world. After all, knowing is half the battle, and if you follow these simple rules of credit card etiquette, you’ll enjoy a better reputation, leading to higher sales, friendlier customers, and a better experience for everyone involved.

Poor Etiquette: Advertising Problems. If you have credit card issues, consider whom you will confide in carefully. Complaining about your current balance, collections, or especially bankruptcy puts listeners in an uncomfortable position. Moreover, if your listeners don’t know you very well, they’re more likely to base your image on that negative information rather than your positive qualities.

Proper Etiquette: Always respect your audience. If they aren’t close friends or family, keep your money troubles on the backburner. Speak generally, recommends Lydia Ramsey, a business etiquette expert and writer of Manners that Sell. She says it’s more acceptable to talk about the world or national economy instead of injecting such a personal, close-to-home topic for just about everyone.

Poor: Hogging Receipts. After expensive dinners, drinks, hotel stays, and gas fill-ups, you’ve hoarded every last receipt available so you can write it off on your company, even if some of the purchases weren’t yours or for you. Especially if you’re in a group, hogging the receipts so you can write the costs off on your personal expense report is rude.

Proper: Be mindful of taking turns for paying the costs, and try to only keep your charge receipts. Don’t ask for someone else’s, either.

Poor: Card Wars. When dinner is done, your waiter brings the check, and suddenly everyone is pulling out their cards, arguing over who’s going to pay for the meal. So begins the ridiculous debate over who gets to pay for the meal. Such displays are a big faux-pas, particularly in a high-end restaurant.

Proper: If you really want to pay, don’t announce it to the world. Before you are seated, present the waiter with your credit card, saying you’ll be responsible for the bill. Also, indicate that you’d like to sign the receipt in private. When the meal begins, others will wonder about the bill. Simply tell them that it’s covered, and move on to another subject.

Stay tuned for part two of our three-part series on credit card etiquette, and remember – actions speak louder than words. Vision Payments Solutions offers a complete range of hardware, software, and support for all kinds of electronic cards and machinery. Feel free to get in touch with one of our friendly representatives today, and get started processing all forms of payment!