How to survive yesterday’s Mastercard outage?


#1

So I was in Morrisons yesterday evening, and my Monzo card wouldn’t work (using contactless). Then I tried my mobile phone, using Google Pay which is linked to my Starling card, and that also failed.

Finally I tried my Nationwide Visa credit card, using chip and pin (didn’t try contactless as I’ve never used it like that before), and successfully made my payment.

  • was yesterday’s problem with contactless payments, or with the systems that both Monzo and Starling use?

  • was it a Mastercard problem (seeing as my NW Visa card worked)?

  • this incident makes me think I should add my NW card to Google Pay as a backup, even though I would rather only have it linked to just the one card for now (only started using mobile payments a few weeks ago for the first time ever).

How would people manage if they only have one account (e.g. if Monzo was their sole account), or they only had their phone with them and no wallet with other cards (or cash)?


#2

It was a card acquirer outage which is an external problem with the shop. Nothing you can do with a 3rd party issue, it’s as likely to affect Barclays as it is Monzo or both at the same time. As this was MasterCard it’s probably best to have a back up Visa card and visa users to have a back up mastercard. There’s a couple of topics on last nights shenanigans


Empathy & responsibility when communicating issues
Curve Feedback
(Ian Lyon) #3

Spot on. In very simple terms you can think of a card acquirer as the bank the merchants use to operate their card machines; if they have problems, then the card machines will fail regardless of the bank card (MasterCard cards in this case) you as a customer attempt to pay with :pensive:


Empathy & responsibility when communicating issues
(Nick) #4

It was indeed. Or to be a little more precise, a problem that only affected Mastercards.

Unfortunately in that case there would be nothing for it other than to pay in cash, and if no cash, would have to abandon the transaction. :cry: Having checked my cards in light of last night’s outage, I’ve noticed that gives me another reason not to close my legacy bank account - it’s the only Visa card I have.


#5

Same here. I’ve decided as a result to keep my old one open with a few pounds in as a fall back just in case


(Kevyn) #6

I always carry a Visa as backup to a MasterCard Debit. There are some ATM’s which don’t allow MasterCard near me and for any possible acceptance issues in stores.


(Kieran McHugh) #7

To guard against outages on the payment network I always carry a bank card (Monzo) and my Amex.


(Jack) #8

Same here I tend to carry my Lloyds Visa, Amex & Monzo Mastercard with me.