Maybe this really isn’t an IMHO, but here goes.
I was down getting pizza tonight (carryout from the local Papa John’s), and the guy in front of me put his $7.50 bill on his credit card. Needless to say, this kind of bugged me because it of course held me up as they scanned his card, waited for authorization, he signed it, etc, when I just wanted to drop my exact change on the counter, get my pizza and get out of there. Okay, maybe he had just run out of money and didn’t feel like going to the ATM.
But it made me wonder, because I don’t think I’ve ever charged anything less than $20 or so. IMHO (see I got it in there somewhere) it’s just silly to charge just a few bucks.
Any thoughts? What’s the smallest amount you’ve ever charged?
I use my debit card at grocery stores when I’m out of town because if I withdraw $$ from banks, I get surcharges. At supermarkets I can get cash back, like 40 bucks. So I save on those $2 - $4 charges. Sometimes buy $11 worth of groceries.
Maybe the guy was from out of town…
This is why I did a double-take at the McDondald’s commercial touting their new ability to accept cards. “We know you want to be able to pay fast and get out quickly…”
WTF? Then use bloody CASH!
I use my debit card to buy almost everything. I carry some cash so I can go out and buy fast food or something, but not much. In fact, when I went back to my home town, it was a shock to have to revert to cash because the stores didn’t all have card readers. Either that or shudder write a check.
Of course the debit charge comes straight out of my checking account, not charged to a credit card account accruing interest. I pretty much view it as the same as cash without the hassle of actually carrying it.
And barring some severe server crash somewhere, every one of the transactions I make has taken thirty seconds to a minute. Mayhaps a bit of patience is in order.
So ends my commercial for the Visa check card.
Four cents on my Visa check/debit card a couple months ago.
Before anyone jumps me for that, in my defense: I was at a gas station and the pump malfunctioned almost immediately after it started. The clerk refused to delete the charge and let me pay cash instead.
Otherwise, maybe $5-$7 for gas was the lowest. I use my Visa check card almost exclusively - I spend cash if I have it, so it’s easier for me personally to manage money by not carrying much cash.
I use a credit card for everything possible. If it were possible to live without cash, I would.
Plastic is convenient, easily trackable, requires only monthly refreshing and is considerably more secure. Cash is so 20th century.
I think I’ve used my check card for amounts under $2 before, back before I started paying for everything by either cash or check.
$1.04 cents for a Swanson chicken pot pie. Yum, tastes like salt.
I use my debit card for almost everything. If vending machines would take the card I’d never carry a cent. It’s nice to see where all my money has gone at the end of the week. Also, the muggers around here don’t even bother with credit cards, they take the cash and throw the rest of the wallet somewhere nearby where it can be retrieved the next day.
Another Debit Card user checking in. I rarely have more than $5 in cash on my person. I don’t think my transactions take any longer than people who count out exact change, rummaging to find the last penny in the bottom of their change purses. I’ve almost apologized when using it for tiny purchases (under $5) but money is money…
You’re in trouble now
We have one of these machines selling disposable cameras in the amusement park I work in.
I think that debit cards are a little different than credit cards, the subject of the original post. When using a credit card, there’s the whole interest part of the equation to consider (if you don’t pay it off every month). So I’d guess that people are more likely to use debit cards for smaller transactions than credit cards.
And I forgot about buying gas! Yeah, I guess I have charged as little as $5-7 to my card when filling up motorcycles. I refuse to use cash to buy gas anymore. In fact, if a station doesn’t have card readers, I will move on to the next one. I hate having to walk inside the shop and wait in line for the honor of paying for their gas.
$0.12 for a reciept in Four Corners CA. I needed a receipt from there and the first gas station wasn’t open after I filled up and didn’t get my receipt so I moved onto the next one, could only get 12 cents in it.
I charge almost everything. Why?
I don’t have to go to the ATM a couple times a week.
I don’t have to carry so much cash around.
It takes just as long to fumble with change as it does for the card to do its thing. I wish those little old ladies counting out nickels would just hand the clerk a piece of plastic and be done with it.
At the end of the year, I know how much I’ve spent on gas, travel, and whatever other categories the credit card report has. Oh, I love that thing.
I can get things like frequent flyer miles or money back or hotel discounts or other things for using a card!
And it takes up less space in my wallet.
Can’t beat that!
Once I had a desperate craving for a cigarette, no cash, and less than $20 in my account. The smoke shop guy takes ATM, but usually only over $10. I talked him into charging me an extra buck so his fifty-cent surcharge would be covered, plus interest.
[tangent]The morning of 9/11, I watched the second tower go down, then jumped in my car to go hang out in the shopping plaza until he opened. I was under the impression that LA was going to bombed into smithereens, and as such, I didn’t think it mattered if I was at home or two miles away at Albertson’s. I listened to the radio, which didn’t reassure me much, until he showed up. Again, I didn’t have cash, but as soon as he heard me say, “I wouldn’t ask if this wasn’t a crisis…” he just handed me a pack. I think he was similiarly convinced that LA was toast. I paid him back the next day; karma, yanno.[/tangent]
I try to keep ten bucks on me for minor transactions; ten dollars is my lower limit for charging or check card use. That said, I did once charge about $5 at a 7-11 when I was in college. I desperately needed tampons, I didn’t have any cash, and I didn’t think it was a matter that could safely wait while I made a trip to the ATM and then another one to the store.
Why exactly are some people ashamed to use charge cards for small amounts? Doesn’t make much sense to me. I can kinda see writing a check a little differently, it does take a bit more time than paying cash, but even in that case not much more if you mostly fill it out ahead of time.
And here I was thinking this was about the least you’ve ever charged for sex. sigh
Well, the answer is $2.69.
I can’t match 12¢ but I think I did charge 99¢ before.
But I am very courteous about it and if I notice people behind me with a small amount of items and I know I’ll charge I’ll lean back and ask “Cash?” If they say yes I wave them ahead. I’m never in that much of a hurry anyway.
I think I have you all beat. I have charged .05 on the business credit card before. The purchace?
One 5/16th bolt
I’ll check in at $1.02. As mentioned by others, use it exclusively and pay it off each month. If you do this, you do not pay any interest charges. You also get the benefit of easily tracking your spending. That can be a real eye opener!