As previously announced, in just over a weeks’ time on the 19th of January, Amazon will stop accepting payments via Visa credit cards. They have emailed all customers who pay by Visa to remind them.
“Please update your Amazon Prime payment method. Starting 19 January 2022, we will unfortunately no longer accept any Visa credit cards issued in the UK, due to the high fees Visa charges for processing credit card transactions.
Our records indicate that you currently use a Visa credit card to pay for your Prime Membership. To ensure you continue to have access to unlimited fast delivery, endless streaming with Prime Video, millions of songs and podcasts with Amazon Music Prime and the many other Prime benefits you enjoy, you’ll need to update your payment card.”
– Amazon email to customers using Visa credit card payments
The decision to stop accepting Visa credit cards and create payment limitations is due to high transaction fees. Visa had said that they were working to resolve the issue of these restrictions being imposed by Amazon but no resolution appears to have been found. The restrictions will only be implemented for Visa credit cards, customers will still be able to use Visa debit cards and other payment providers.
Visa and MasterCard increased their UK-EU interchange fees this year due to the EU fee cap for the UK being removed after Brexit. Amazon have expressed their disapproval towards Visa applying such high fees and Visa are disappointed that the marketplace will be restricting customer choice.
You might think that this will only impact consumers, but if you pay for any Amazon services with Visa credit cards then you could also be impacted. Typically, this may well include business customers signed up for Business Prime and it will impact both subscriptions such as Prime and purchases of goods on Amazon.
What’s not yet clear is what will happen if you accept Amazon Payments on your website – if Amazon puts a block on all Visa payments your customers may discover they can no longer purchase from your website using their Visa credit card.
Whilst the situation is regrettable, other credit cards are available such as Mastercard and AMEX. Amazon are also offering many customers an incentive to register a new card – £20 for Prime members and £10 for non-Prime members.