Mastercard and Visa extend cap on cross-regional fees for EU travel cards

The European Commission said Visa and Mastercard had committed to maintaining caps on travel card fees for five years.

In 2019, following an EU antitrust investigation, the US payments giant agreed to reduce interchange fees for payments in Europe using cards issued elsewhere by an average of 40%.

The agreement was originally scheduled to last for five years until November 2024, but has been extended for a further five years to November 2029.

For card transactions, fees are capped at 0.2% for debit cards and 0.3% for credit cards. For card-not-present transactions, the limit is 1.15% for debit cards and 1.5% for credit cards.

Ahead of the 2019 deal, the EU competition watchdog condemned the two payment card schemes for imposing higher inter-regional interchange fees on European retailers that accept payments from cards issued outside the European Economic Area, claiming that this raises the bar for consumer goods and services in the region. s price.

Despite the extension, the European Commission warned that “Visa and Mastercard's voluntary commitments will not prevent the Commission from conducting investigations or initiating proceedings if the Commission obtains concrete evidence that the current caps are no longer appropriate”.

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