merchant fees waived for charities- Haiti relief

We are hearing that merchant processors are offering to waive credit card fees on donations for the disaster. Is that something that your company is doing? The processors are not waiving fees to my knowledge, however the card associations are. So far Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express have all announced plans as of January 15. The good news is that over 95% of credit card processing costs are typically in interchange fees, the same fees that are being waived.

If your non-profit is not on the list, you can ask your processor to help you get on the list, but it’s pretty unlikely. Your charity will need a long track record of donor dollar efficiency to hope to qualify. Contact your merchant account provider to make this request.

The charities covered varies by the card brand.

Visa Waives Interchange Rates for Select Charities

San Francisco, January 14, 2010
Visa Inc. (NYSE:V) today announced a comprehensive commitment to help the people of Haiti following the recent devastating earthquake, which includes a $200,000 donation to the American Red Cross Haiti Relief and Development Fund. Visa will also match employee donations to Haitian relief efforts on a two-to-one basis through the end of January.

As part of Visa’s response, through the end of February, Visa will also donate revenues generated by charitable contributions to the crisis in Haiti directly to the American Red Cross.

In addition, Visa will waive interchange fees through the end of February on donations made to a select group of major, U.S.-based charities that are providing support to Haitian relief efforts. Eligible charities are:

* American Red Cross
* AmeriCares
* Direct Relief International
* Habitat for Humanity
* International Rescue Committee
* Mercy Corps
* Oxfam America
* Save the Children
* US Fund for UNICEF
* World Vision

As part of this initiative, Visa is reaching out to the U.S. and Haitian governments to explore how its payment technology can be helpful in effectively distributing relief funds, as Visa has done in the past.

Here are the plans for other cards:
Discover waives merchant fees and matches donor dollars
MasterCard Waives merchant fees
American Express rebates merchant fees retroactive

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