When it comes to Amazon and money, never say never. Two days before the e-commerce giant was set to ban Visa credit cards in its UK store, it has changed its tune. Visa credit cards are still welcome on the platform, for now.
On Monday, Amazon told customers in an email that was “working closely with Visa on a potential solution” to their disagreement, Sky News reported. Visa confirmed that it was in talks with Amazon to various outlets — Gizmodo reached out to the company’s European division but we haven’t heard back yet — and that customers could continue to use their credit cards in the meantime. (Visa debit cards are not affected).
The sudden truce is good news for Amazon customers in the UK, where almost 90% shop on the e-commerce site, the Guardian pointed out. Additionally, an estimated 21 million are said to have Prime membership. Reports in December stated that Amazon could have lost up to $US1.9 ($3) in sales from UK customers. Visa would have been battered by the move as well because customers would have been obligated to use other cards on Amazon.
The squabble between Amazon and Visa dates to November. That month, angry over rising fees, the e-commerce giant proclaimed it would ban Visa credit cards on its site beginning on Jan. 19. Visa shot back at the time that Amazon was “restricting consumer choice.”
Amazon has not publicly disclosed which rising fees it doesn’t like, but Sky News states that it is believed the e-commerce platform is mad over interchange fees, which it claims have increased five-fold since Brexit. These fees are paid by Amazon or its merchants and would decrease profit margins and lead to changes that could increase prices for consumers.
The fight isn’t over yet, though. The two sides are working to reach an agreement, but it doesn’t mean they will. (Although given the big bucks involved, something tells me they probably will). If the talks dissolve with no agreement, Amazon said it will give customers a heads up.
“Should we make any changes related to Visa credit cards, we will give you advance notice. Until then, you can continue to use Visa credit cards, debit cards, Mastercard, American Express, and Eurocard as you do today,” the company said in its email to customers.
Gizmodo reached out to Amazon for comment on Monday but did not receive a response by the time of publication. We’ll make sure to update this article if someone from the company gets back to us.