Credit Cards

Abigail abigail at
Tue Oct 13 22:18:46 BST 2009

On Tue, Oct 13, 2009 at 05:41:53PM +0100, Dominic Thoreau wrote:
> 2009/10/13 Abigail <abigail at>:
> > accepted my ATM card (no zip code required). I was positively surprised
> > by the ability to use my ATM card for retail, because as soon as I step
> > accross the border here in Europe, I can only use my ATM card at banks,
> > not retailers.
> I remember late last year in Amsterdam, trying to pay my hotel bill
> with my Maestro card and having it refused. Despite there being a sign
> on the desk saying they accepted it.

The problem is the protocol between the retailer and the banks. There
are differences in different countries. So you cannot use your
ATM card for retail payment outside of your country. But this
is going to change by the end of next year. See for instance

> So I applied for a credit card (and got it, with a credit limit 4
> times higher than I actually wanted) - and lo, six months later the
> bank re-issued my Maestro as a Visa Debit....

There are a lot of places in .nl where I can pay with an ATM card, but
I cannot use a credit card. The costs for a retailer when the customer
pays with an ATM card is only a few cents - far less than a credit card
payment. Furthermore, if I pay with an ATM card, money is transferred


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