Wrong amount taken at petrol kiosk -advice?

I went to the Tesco garage for petrol, one of those pay at the pump affairs. I put in £10:40 ish, but it came out as £1.00. Monzo error or Tesco, do you think?

Thank you. You have dashed me making an idiot of myself at Tesco.


This is still a bit stupid from Tesco and would potentially generate losses if your card only ever had 1£ and no overdraft to cover it.

The proper way to do it is to authorize a reasonable amount (100£), and them amend that authorization in real-time to the actual price of fuel dispensed. This both covers them against fraud/theft (they are guaranteed to get those 100£ assuming the initial authorization was approved) and gives a better user experience to the buyer.

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Only a better experience if you have £100 in your account. Not much use if you need £10 of petrol but only have £15 available.


Nothing prevents it from falling back to lower amounts in 10£ increments - it’ll take a few extra seconds until it tries all of them but is definitely possible.

What if I never pay off the overdraft/overlimit? Not to mention, it still screws up with budgeting by presenting the full amount a few days later.

But still, it screws the bank or catches the customer by surprise while it really should just not have dispensed the fuel in the first place.

Why is the customer caught by surprise? They bought the fuel…

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Do that, and as well as paying :monzo: Monzo £15 a month, you’d find the tank of petrol was the last thing you ever bought on your Monzo card. Eventually, you’d find your account closed as per the terms and conditions, in court (or speaking to bailiffs) to repay your bank charges, and unable to get more than a basic bank account in the future.

I know Monzo don’t like to overcrowd the interface but maybe a little ‘i’ next to these transactions (and TfL, some hotels etc) would help those who don’t know about these charging methods?

I never really knew about authorisations and presentments until reading Monzo forums, but 90% of people don’t read the forum and may not fully understand why the charges are wrong.

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I’m talking more about the case when the account was opened fraudulently with a fake/stolen identity and the fraudster is not planning to repay the negative balance, which leaves the bank out of pocket. Would be nice if the merchant just didn’t give out more goods than what the card actually authorised so cases like this are plain impossible. :slight_smile:


+1 on this idea. Transactions say if they’re pending in the details page, but I’d like an icon or something in the feed too. Maybe you’d have to turn on a “banking nerd mode” flag?

I’m sure it’s been explained before but why do Tesco and others do this. The pump is online so why doesn’t the final charge show up the moment you get your receipt? If the £1 does then so can the £10?

It happened to me at Sainsbury’s using my Amex that other day… the actual amount (£43) has now cleared AND the £99 is still spending… Awful system imo,

Every other P@P I’ve used it’s only taken the £1 as a active card check.

Looks like what Tesco are doing is now against the MasterCard rules according to a Starling employee - merchants should indeed authorise up to the maximum amount and then refund the difference and not just take 1£ and risk putting you into unauthorised overdraft.

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Last time I used a company card at Sainsbury’s it followed the new rules and did a higher preauthorisation, £99.

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So, how they are resolving that issue for people with a low bank balance? They can’t just lock those people out. That’s stupid, and if they did do that they should be sacked, because it’s stupidly unfair.

I don’t think they will do anything about it as it is not a merchant’s hairbrained idea but a decision by the card scheme. Mastercard obviously feel if you can’t afford to pay for a full tank of fuel you don’t deserve to have a car! No more topping up £10 at a time, unless you withdraw from an ATM and pay in cash :wink: If Monzo finally get around to enabling us to categorise cash withdrawals, that would help.

Can’t the fuel pump just brute force it’s way through by lowering the authorised amount in 10£ increments until the transaction goes though?