Hosed at the gas pump

MSN Money – Hosed at the gas pump — by your debit card

Via MeFi.

The terminology in this article is confusing. There are 3 different kinds of cards in question: (a) uses credit-card processing and goes against a credit limit, (b) uses credit-card processing (Visa, MC, Discover) but goes against your checking account, and (c) uses ATM processing (a PIN) and goes against your checking account. Types (b) and (c) are called “debit cards,” but when they ask you “credit or debit” for a given debit card they are differentiating between (b) and (c).

The article seems to be warning against the use of type (b) (debit cards that use credit card processing) and advises one to use type (a) or (c) if possible (credit cards which are really credit cards, or debit cards which use ATM processing).

But it sure could have been more clear. The first time I read it, I understood it as arguing against type (c).

Pity there isn’t better terminology for this sort of thing.

1 thought on “Hosed at the gas pump”

  1. I use primarily BP and Meijer gas stations, and both of them do the $1 thing. Which is sort of a pain, since my bank doesn’t know that I spent $25, so my “available” total is off. I wish they’d do it realtime, like everyone else in the world.

    The article states that BP does $75, and that it usually comes off in a couple hours. My experience is that it’s $1, and can vary from 1 day to 5.

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