Amazon.com Inc will stop accepting Visa Inc credit cards issued in the United Kingdom from next year because of the high transaction fees charged by the payment processor, the e-commerce giant says.
“As a result of Visa’s continued high cost of payments, we regret that Amazon.co.uk will no longer accept UK-issued Visa credit cards as of 19 January, 2022,” an Amazon spokesperson said in an emailed statement.
Amazon customers can still use Visa debit cards, Mastercard and Amex credit cards and Eurocard, the company said in a note to its customers.
“We are very disappointed that Amazon is threatening to restrict consumer choice in the future,” a Visa spokesperson said in a statement.
“We continue to work toward a resolution so our cardholders can use their preferred Visa credit cards at Amazon UK without Amazon-imposed restrictions come January 2022.”
Since Brexit, an EU-enforced cap on fees charged by card issuers is no longer in place in the UK.
The move by Amazon, earlier reported by Bloomberg News, has prompted the UK Trade Commission to call on the government to improve the UK-EU trade agreement and analysts to call on British regulators to look into the fees in the credit card market.
“If Amazon can’t make it work, with all their resources and ability to navigate legislation to avoid costs, then small businesses have no chance and so the government must improve the UK-EU trade and co-operation agreement to keep British businesses competitive,” Tamara Cincik from UK Trade and Business Commission said.
Fees have been a growing source of tension between Amazon and Visa.
Earlier this year, Amazon started charging customers in Australia and Singapore who use Visa credit cards a 0.5 per cent surcharge.
In any credit card transaction, there are a number of fees involved, such as an “interchange fee” that the shopper’s bank pays to the retailer’s bank and other costs like service and technology charges.