That is rubbish, in many establishments their setup is set to a default so there is as little intervention or interaction by staff or customer as possible to make the process simpler and quicker. Some default all card transactions to the local currency and others to the card currency rather than present a screen asking the cashier to chose or override. In can be a hassle when you are given no choice for DCC or not, but worse when the retailer thinks your card is USD rather than GBP or EUR
It’s more than a hassle, it’s illegal and/or against the card network rules.
European law states the currency that customers are charged in must be agreed before the transaction, and if currency conversion is offered the customer must know all charges and the exchange rate beforehand too.
Mastercard and Visa, which facilitate the majority of consumer global payments, also say a customer must always give permission for a company to bill them in their own home currency rather than local currency. This means any business, wherever in the world you are paying, should not be overriding or changing your choice after you enter your PIN.
And this isn’t rubbish, it’s reported to be a problem.
It may be against the rules but it is widespread even in the UK so is not a problem limited to our travels abroad. While ‘European law states the currency that customers are charged in must be agreed before the transaction’ there is a legal argument that as prices are not displayed in multiple currencies a customer agreeing a purchase is effectively agreeing to the displayed price and currency before the transaction by taking an item to a till if any price label displays a currency symbol, as for DCC options some terminals skips these options and do not give customers the choice. But even if they legally supposed to have the choice, who is going to check all retailers and force them to upgrade terminals or their software it just isn’t going to happen.
I guess that’s exactly why a feature like the one that’s been requested would be useful then
That’s the article I’d remembered! It was driving me mad as I knew I’d read it but couldn’t remember where.
I linked it in my DCC guide, and yes, I’m only replying to make a shameless plug!
It would be great to have the option to auto-decline all DCC transactions (currency of transaction matches the home currency of the card, not the merchant’s home currency) as these are a rip-off and generally done without consent.
Unfortunately this isn’t really possible at Monzo’s end given that the whole point of DCC is that the issuer only gets the authorisation in the home currency (Sterling).
It’s very possible. If the currency code on the authorisation is GBP and the merchant is in a country that doesn’t use GBP, decline the transaction. Obviously, it could cause issues with online merchants and stuff so needs to be switchable.
Yeah, I guess that could work. But as you say, online transactions would need to be accounted for.
And situations like Hong Kong where the authorisation is almost always DCC, even if the settlement isn’t (since you pick on a paper slip - watch like a hawk, dishonest merchants ignore your choice frequently). It should be a switch, an optional security feature those of us who want can switch on and off.
Hi Allie, welcome to the community!
We had a similar (but not the same) discussion before, so I merged your posts with this topic, to keep it’s nice and tidy in one place.
Thanks Marta! I looked through quickly, but not well enough I’m afraid, sorry!
I’ve been thinking about this… I’m not sure how you’d implement it in the forum, it would seem to be a lot of clutter in the wikis, but a database of all DCC offers would be very helpful! That way, people could search for a country before shopping and get a list of everywhere that offered them DCC and how (active customer choice on screen, active customer choice on paper [risky as not always honoured], cashier choice but actually offered, cashier forced).
It would be so useful… but where?
I feel like that would create a lot of confusion (esp if the list went into detail on how to avoid) and might end up giving inaccurate info since even the same chain might have different practices at different locations… everyone’s experience is different too. You might get a particular staff member that selected DCC, others might not. Even within countries, cities differ- Eg with issues of card acceptance, I had no issues in Munich but someone else remarked otherwise when they visited it.
I think a general warning could be included in Wiki like the one you wrote about HK but expecting a comprehensive list of every store and how wouldn’t be feasible.
I agree, that’s why I don’t think it would be good for a wikipost. A database of some kind of experiences could be useful. Yes, YMMV, but it would show trends.
For example, watching others check out in Harrods I feel confident to say it is cashier controlled but they always ask.
I hope I’m not sounding dismissive but I think most people using Monzo wouldn’t bother, or wouldn’t know/ care to look out for in detail. Many don’t even know DCC exists. Even with each country’s Wiki, unless I’m going to a really obscure place like- North Korea or something- I don’t check it, and I certainly wouldn’t scroll through a massive list of stores to find one I would possibly visit and find out about DCC (?) how would it be arranged? By location (?)
I think @Avishai’s guide is informative enough without needing to go into details about specific shops. I confess I go by the general rule of “always ask to pay in the local currency” instead of bothering about how it’s supposed to work
Mostly just thinking it would be a lot of effort for something that could possibly differ, be difficult to organise, and run the risk of misleading people/ confusing them But you seem really enthusiastic about it, so maybe it could be something that exists elsewhere, not affiliated with Monzo so people don’t think it’s an official endorsement/ guarantee that you will be able to skip DCC.
Definitely not a guarantee or anything, more like a database of experiences, that could easily have multiple entries per shop.
But how many people would really contribute? It’d take a lot of interest from a wide variety of people to be of value.
I agree totally on always asking to pay in the local currency if you’re in an at-risk situation, which means that my experience can be very different from others. For some countries, where paper slips are used (like Hong Kong) or the card is taken away (like US restaurants) it’s Amex-only time (I’ll be sad if MBNA ever discontinues the Everyday Plus…).
I was thinking about this just today. I could really use having DCC locked out, even if that is something I have to configure manually.
DCC serves no other purpose than to rip people off. I have yet to see a bank offer such god awful rates that DCC would ever be attractive.
Basically, offer the feature as a switch with a currency (or list) associated with it, then reject all transactions that are not in the specified currencies while the switch is enabled.
Problem solved. Gougers cry, Monzo users happy. Win win.
It would be good to avoid this kind of situations: Trying to pay with my Australian card in Europe. I want to pay EUR and not in my card’s currency, as it offers 0% FX fees. And the messaged displayed is so confusing it is impossible to know which button to select.
YOU CAN PAY EITHER : AUD / EUR
You select: NO or YES ?
Well in this case to pay in EUR I had to select Yes! About $50 FX fees if you would select No…