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New credit card fee for shoppers

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POSTED: Friday, January 25, 2013 - 8:29pm

UPDATED: Friday, January 25, 2013 - 11:14pm

January 27th retailers in 40 of 50 states will now have the option to charge consumers a swipe fee on any purchase made with a credit card. Fortunately, Texas is not one of those 40 states.

The CEO and President of Better Business Bureau of  East Texas, Michelle Mills, tells KETK News that Texas residents can still be affected by the new fees if they travel out of state or shop online from companies located in other states.

The new credit card fee came out of a settlement between retailers and credit card companies. Merchants used to have to pick up the tab for swipe fees-- now this settlement lets them pass off the cost to consumers.

Mills says, "a retailer can charge you between 1.5 and 3 percent but they can't charge more than they would be charged so they can't make a profit from it. "

If you're shopping outside Texas and that includes shopping online and the merchant is out of state you can be charged those fees but they have to disclose that upfront. Which means shoppers might want to use cash or debit card.  Mills says "some retailers have began to charge reduced rates if you pay with cash because they want to avoid those transaction fees both with debit cards and credit cards."

Denise McAndrews tells KETK News the new fees would make her think twice before using a credit card out of state. Andrews says, "it would definitely deter me because that's money that I worked really hard for. To me that would be just like throwing it away.

Mills says there are ways around the credit card fee--you can ask for a discount, pay with cash, or simply not shop at a place that charges thee fees.

For more tips and information you can also visit their the East Texas Better Business Bureau.

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