Discover card acceptance?

I read this in another thread, and decided to start new discussion instead of potentially derailing that one.

I’ve heard this a million times, but I’ve never had a problem with anyone not taking my Discover Card. How big of an issue is this?

Used to be a big issue, but not anymore. I haven’t seen a place in over 15 years that accepted Visa/MC but didn’t accept Discover. Usually they either accept all four major cards or none at all. And none at all is pretty rare now, too.

One of our major wholesale club stores accepts Visa and MasterCard but not Amex or Discover.

The groceries and gas stations around here all accept Discover.

Which one? For a long time, Sam’s Club didn’t take anything but Discover, but I haven’t been in a Sam’s for eight years so I can’t speak to that anymore.

Every so often I run into it. My hair salon doesn’t take it, and every so often a restaurant. It’s okay, I have another card.

I think part of that is because they’re in house credit card is run through Discover…I think.

Also, I remember a few years ago someone asking a similar question about this Family Guy clip.

It’s not so much major chains not taking it but rather the local, mom and pop places.

Edit: The same goes for Amex.

Amex tends to be more expensive for the merchant to take, I’m not sure about Discover.

IME, Amex is less likely to be accepted than Discover, although that’s s still pretty rare. Except in Oregon. Seemed like half the places I went wouldn’t take Amex.

Here in Dallas, everybody takes Discover and maybe 10% don’t take Amex. Apparently the fees are too high to be worthwhile.

Discover exists only because it has some of the lowest merchant rates around - about half that of Visa/MC, all other things being equal. That’s why Sam’s Club takes (took?) it. The bite for a large merchant is well under 1%. If there was any downside, it’s that merchants had to set up to deal with another merchant provider, which may or may not have been worth the hassle. (These days, most smaller businesses use an integrated provider that nicks them for a little more overall but lets them take almost any credit card issued.)

Amex is the opposite, hated by most merchants because it has very high annual and transaction fees and a discount 2-5 times that of Visa/MC. It wouldn’t exist were it not for the endless marketing about how exclusive and upscale it is. (Yes, I know, it’s very useful to that narrow tier of business people who travel a lot at a comfy level… it’s a shuck or a scam for everyone else.)

Our Sam’s Club has always taken Discover. It was Master Card they didn’t take. They’ve taken MC for a couple of years now. (I know because we shop at Sams every week, and Discover is our primary payment method).

My dentist doesn’t take Discover, but that’s the only place I regularly go that doesn’t.

I’m in the Caribbean so you may never have heard of our warehouse clubs. Priced Right takes Discover. They are the wholesale club side of a local grocery store chain. As far as I know they don’t have stores outside of Cayman.
Cost U Less does not take Discover. They are a part of the North West Company that mostly services rural towns in Alaska and the Northwest Territories of Canada… and a few assorted tropical islands under the Cost U Less brand in places such as Grand Cayman. Apparently they do take Amex at other corporate locations, just not in Cayman.

Sam’s Club takes Master Card and Discover, as noted above. You can only use Visa if it’s a debit card.

About the only time I see Discover not being accepted (when Visa and MC are) is online shopping. IME, it’s not uncommon for smaller web stores to only take the big two.

Discover used to be accepted at Sears in Canada; I think it was Sears’ house brand of card back then. Now, it seems to be extremely rare or nonexistent in Canada, other than on ATMs.

Here in Canada, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a merchant mention that they accept Discover. Visa and MasterCard are accepted everywhere, AmEx is accepted in most non-fast-food restaurants and large stores.

ETA: Ninja’d

I’ve used a Discover Card as my primary credit card for something like 10 years. I think I have one doctor that doesn’t accept it. I use it at grocery stores, home improvement stores, restaurants, etc.

I’d say I run into this maybe once every other month, and it’s usually smaller businesses like non-chain restaurants. The sort of business where I wouldn’t be too surprised if they didn’t take credit cards at all. It doesn’t really bother me because I have other cards, but that said, the main reason I keep my MasterCard is for the few times a year that i can’t use my Discover.

Yup; it was developed originally by Sears in the 1980s, when they were trying to build a financial-services group (they also owned Coldwell Banker and Dean Witter at that time). They spun Discover off, along with Dean Witter, in '93.

My current employer doesn’t take Disover or AMEX. Again, it’s a small “mom-and-pop” business.