TWO supermarket chains which will implement a “hold” for those fuelling and paying at the pump have explained whether it will apply inside the petrol station kiosk.
Tesco and Sainsbury’s have further clarified the rules after it emerged a hold of up to £100 would be taken at petrol stations under major changes imposed by the banks.
Visa, Mastercard and American EuroJournal have told supermarkets that they will need to place a “pre-check” on all pay at pump fuel transactions as time goes on.
Read more: Drivers furious as Tesco starts charging drivers £99 deposit for fuel
The card-issuers argue that such a move is already common in European countries, and will help customers “manage” their budget in real time.
So far, both Tesco and Sainsbury’s have publicly confirmed their plans to implement the hold while it is believed Asda and Morrisons are expected to in coming months.
But both have had their fair share of criticism this week after furious drivers raised concerns over the time taken for the funds to be released, and how much is taken.
Read more: Sainsbury’s will also add £100 hold on fuel at petrol stations
However, both supermarket chains have said that the new changes will only apply at the pump, meaning drivers can still pay inside petrol stations without any “pre-check” holds.
It means that drivers concerned about a delay in the releasing of funds back into their available balance, or those who do not have £100 in their account, can pay at a kiosk.
The chains have said that when paying at the kiosk, only the amount of the fuel purchased will be charged to credit and debit cards as if purchasing groceries.
But for those concerned about paying at the pump, the chains have said any amount that is held should be released “almost instantly.”
Meanwhile, they have said if an indvidual does not have £100 available, the pumps should request a lower amount.
‘You’ll only be charged for the amount of petrol you’ve bought’
A spokesperson for Visa this week confirmed that the “ringfenced” amount should in fact be released instantly.
They said: “The way you pay for fuel at self-service pumps has been changing.
“When you insert or tap your card at a self-service pump, your bank will now temporarily reserve an amount from your available balance while you fill up.
“This could be up to £100 (a standard tank of petrol).
“Once you’ve finished filling up, this will be updated and you’ll only be charged for the amount of petrol you bought.
“This should happen almost instantly but occasionally it may take a little longer. If this is the case, please contact your bank.”
Visa has said that the pre-check or hold should be on someone’s account for a few minutes at the most.
‘The new process is designed to ensure more people’s cards can be used at the pump’
Meanwhile Mastercard have said the move is designed to make pay at pump facilities more accessible to everyone and is a system widely used in European countries.
James Thorpe, Vice President for Communications, said: “We are working together with banks and petrol stations to improve the way payments are made at ‘Pay At Pump’ sites.
“The new process is designed to ensure more people’s cards can be used at the pump.
“When you pay at pump using your card, a temporary hold of up to £100 is applied to your account prior to pumping the fuel.
“You may see this initially on your banking App, but immediately after the fuel is dispensed the precise sum is withdrawn from your account, and any remainder of the held funds are released for use.
“Should cardholders experience any issues or have any questions regarding this new process they should contact their bank.”
The Northern Echo has contacted Asda and Morrisons for comment but has not yet received a response
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