I tried a purchase with cashback today — I spent some money at the pub and got £20 back in cash. This used not to work with the prepaid card (the merchant’s terminal would prompt for it because it knew the card was a debit card, but authorisation would fail before the transaction was sent to Monzo) but it does work with the current account.
The terminal clearly knows the amount of cashback because it prints it on the receipt:
Am I allowed to jump in on top of an important person?
So, looking at the receipt I can guess the type of terminal they used. Most pubs, when you ask for cashback, just add £X to your total bill - there is no specific option on the terminal your pub used to “add cashback”. Unless they used a POS at which point it gets complicated…
When you get cashback from a supermarket you’ll enter the card and the POS will check the card type then offer the cashier options - so, to comply with their payment processor requirements (ie. not offer cashback on credit cards and some prepaid) cashback won’t be offered as an option. This is all done on the POS end and then I believe and then the POS just adds £X or whatever and sends it to the terminal for it to do it’s thing. I wouldn’t have thought there was any room in the authorisation to accommodate the split but I’m very happy to be corrected!
The terminal was an Ingenico iWL 250. The amount of cashback was entered into the terminal and you can see it printed it separately from the purchase amount on the cardholder voucher. (Discourse seems to be truncating the scan of the voucher at an unfortunate point in the preview but you can see the whole thing if you click on it.)
It’s definitely in the authorisation, because that way they know what to bill the merchant for in processing fees!
P.S. I don’t use my debit card often, but I’ve NEVER been offered debit card cashback in the UK even when I have used it. Occasionally it’s offered in the US, but even then only at Walmart that I can remember. Is this something you have to ask for?
(If there's the wrong end of a stick, you'll find me holding it.)
If you are ever not offered it, is always worth asking. It used to be only larger supermarkets who offered it, but I guess you can always ask anywhere
It used to be more common than it is now (presumably a combination of more merchants accepting cards now and there being more cash machines around). Offering cashback on debit card transactions is a choice the merchant can make. Most supermarkets still do it, for example, but they don’t push it as hard as they used to and you may have to ask.
I run pubs: I find it convenient to offer cashback in them for a number of reasons. It gets cash off my hands without me having to pay to put it in the bank. (A “purchase with cashback” transaction costs me the same flat rate fee as other debit card transactions, so getting rid of some cash at the same time is a bonus.) People who may be having multiple rounds but only want to use their cards once can pay by card the first time and get cashback, and then give the cash back to me later!
The only real downside is the possibility of disputes, the most common being “I had cashback on my card but you didn’t remember to give it to me!” — which comes down to staff training. CCTV covering the till helps here too.
I think I just realised why I’ve never been offered this in the UK and only rarely in the US - Application Usage Control only allows purchase with cashback for contact chip transactions, if I recall correctly. Something I rarely make (Walmart US, my example above, has contactless disabled on all their terminals due to a dispute with the card networks).
Cashback can currently be done with chip and PIN or magstripe and signature (but not contactless; you are correct about that). These days it’d be a foolish merchant that permitted cashback on magstripe and signature!