Amazon is paying UK customers $27 to delete their Visa credit card as a payment option

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Amazon is paying UK customers $27 to delete their Visa credit card as a payment option
Amazon won't let UK customers pay with Visa credit cards from January 2022.Karol Serewis/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
  • Amazon announced that from January 2022 it won't let UK customers pay with Visa credit cards.
  • It said Visa's high fees were behind the decision.
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Amazon is trying to entice UK users to ditch their Visa credit cards by offering gift cards of up to $27.

Amazon announced Wednesday that from January 19, 2022 its customers will no longer be able to pay using Visa credit cards issued in the UK.

Amazon has been in a long-running fight with Visa over the charges it levies on online transactions. Last month Visa started charging 1.5% on online credit card transactions made between the UK and the EU — up from a previous 0.3%.

An Amazon spokesperson told Insider the company is offering gift cards to customers who either only have a Visa credit card tied to their account or who have it set as their default payment method.

Amazon Prime members are being offered £20 ($27) gift cards and non-Prime members are being offered £10 ($13.50) cards to switch their preferred payment method from a Visa credit card. This includes if they switch to a Visa debit card.

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"The cost of accepting card payments continues to be an obstacle for businesses striving to provide the best prices for customers," Amazon's spokesperson told Insider.

"These costs should be going down over time with technological advancements, but instead they continue to stay high or even rise," they added.

Visa's stock price fell 6.7% following the news that Amazon would stop using it in the UK.

"We have a long-standing relationship with Amazon, and 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," Visa said in a statement.

Per a Cowen analyst's note reported by The Wall Street Journal, Amazon's net sales in the UK are only a tenth of sales in the US and so the move is likely to only have a small impact.

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Reuters reported Amazon is currently in talks with all its payment networks in the US including Visa, Mastercard, and American Express. Amazon's spokesperson confirmed this is the case, and said it was a standard process.

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