About two weeks ago I took my travel bag in to have it repaired. The manager took it with a smile and said it would be ready in a couple of days. Sure enough, I received a call two days later and went to retrieve my bag. His wife brought it out with a smile and told me the price for the repair. I handed over my credit card and she immediately snapped, “Visa or MasterCard only!” “But you are refusing money,” I said. She replied, “American Express charges more for their service, so we don’t use them.” I said, “But this is the credit I use for all my business expenses!? I’ve never been told that it would not be accepted here.” She got testy and said that I had no choice because she had no choice. Be careful when telling a customer that you can’t do something when waht you really mean is you won’t do something. As a business man, I believe if American Express charges more, then either pass this fee along to the customer (who may or may not know or care about the difference) or eat the cost, because the money you make will out weigh the money you shell out to them.
I had some trousers refitted because I lost weight a few years ago. Again, when I showed up to pay I was told in an angry tone, “Visa or MasterCard only!” Several months ago a friend gave me this advice, “Never turn down money when a client offers it to you. They may not offer it to you again.” I know I won’t do business with those establishments again. I don’t know about them, but I do want business. I will take my clients payment (in whatever form they want) for the services I provide. Why leave money on the table? Why pass up a chance to make a sale right now? Get the money now; take the order now; get the contract signed now; get the commitment now. That is why I started taking all major form of payment. It beats the alternative.