Minimum card spend

Just been to the corner shop. Bought some sausages for 2.30…the owner of the shop did not want to take my card as he said min payment by card is 3 pounds…his he allowed do do that?

Unfortunately yes they are.

They can set minimum payments but can’t charge you a fee on top to pay by card.

Luckily it’s becoming more rare.


But there is no sign for the min payment at the shop

I’m not sure if they need a sign, but it should be clearer imo. I generally avoid places like this as it’s rather inconvenient as you’ve noticed.

£2.30, I’d say you were lucky. Those are some expensive sausages

A sign isn’t a legal requirement although it’s common curtesy


There’s no law against it, but it is technically against the Mastercard merchant agreement (though I don’t have a primary source for this).

Unfortunately, Mastercard don’t enforce the rule and it’s very common amongst small shops :frowning:

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To be honest they were garlic flavoured sokolow polish sausages


Ok, they were worth it then. I retract my sausage shaming :grin:


Lool…there is about 15 in a pack…ready to eat hot or cold…just taking the casing off

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The problem is I could not even withdraw cash at that point so had to come empty hand

I really don’t understand this. For my day job, it’s more expensive to process cash than a contactless payment, and the reason I scrapped minimum card payments.


My local have now decided on a £5 min, I only wanted a bottle of Pepsi (£2.39). I left and went to Tesco over the road and got it cheaper (£1.95).


Do the small shops have to pay a fee for every transaction?

2 shops in my village, 1 has a £3 minimum and a no cash back policy, the other doesn’t. I go to the one that wants my money


Yep usually 20-40p plus a percentage 2-3%
Big customers negotiate more favourable rates

Suspect, there’s no margin below £3 for a lot of smaller shop once the payment service provider has there slice. Worldpay, Barclays and Global are the big ones and you need scale to push the fees down.

One of my two local Londis do this. Pretty annoying so just went to coop, it’s so much cheaper too as I have member discount and student discount.

Those are very outdated fees. It’s now typically 0.75% for debit cards. The rise of contactless meant a wholesale rethink of pricing.


Luckily small shops and food trucks are moving to products like iZettle which charges a flat 1.75% fee (and even accepts Amex).

When this occasionally happens to me I just offer to pay 50p for the privilege of paying by card.

So I would have thought that tesco etc might have deals with the merchant