Can Debit Cards Be Used In Places That Accept Credit Cards?

Can debit cards be used in places that accept credit cards? Merchants that may accept only credit cards, or debit cards with the Master Card / Visa signature option include restaurants, hospitals, hotels, small stores and boutiques.

Debit cards can be used in many retail establishments that do accept credit cards, but not debit cards. This may sound like an oxymoron, but some special debit cards that have MasterCard or Visa logo are validated with a signature instead of a pin number.


Gwen Evans, banking professional with ten years experience in the industry states, "It is common for some smaller merchants to have only one form of electronic payment due to the cost obtaining and having payment services. The merchants often choose the credit card option over the debit card, because they assume more customers will be able to use this payment option."




While it might make sense to go ahead and use a credit card when debit cards are not accepted, the consumer should always question the merchant to see if their debit card is accepted. The main reasons to use debit cards, for world wide acceptance, convenience, money management, and peace of mind, are why you should only use the credit card when absolutely necessary. Using the credit card when you could actually have used the debit card, will cost you interest, and you will lose the benefit of good money management and peace of mind when the bill comes in next months mail. It is far better to use what you have in your checking account first, before you use costly credit. This is especially true for every day items.

While many consumers like the fact that their debit card cannot be used without a PIN, more and more banks have changed the card function to eliminate the necessity of a PIN number. This allows the debit card to be used in place of a credit card.
When signing for purchases like a credit card, the consumer should be aware that it might take one to three days for the deduction to be made from your bank account. Many people overdraw their accounts because they assume the "credit" transaction has already been withdrawn from their account and continue to spend. Always be aware of your account balance, or you will risk becoming overdrawn and getting charged fees by your bank, which can be as much as $35.00 per incident.]

Merchants that may accept only credit cards, or debit cards with the Master Card / Visa signature option include restaurants, hospitals, hotels, small stores and boutiques. In restaurants and over the phone transactions there was no safe way use of a PIN when making purchases. Therefore, without a Credit Company Logo, debit purchases were impossible. Now that debit cards may be used in the place of credit cards for telephone and internet purchases as well, credit cards can be saved for real emergencies, and not just for the must-have blender or necklace.

In service situations, there are companies that will not accept credit cards for deposits, but will accept debit cards for payments after the service is completed. Such services include Hotels, motels, car rental companies, moving trucks or services, house cleaner services and other service-oriented businesses.

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