Charging my Credit Card in AED ?

#1 Apr 26th, 2009, 21:21
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#1
Is this a scam or just a way to increase what the merchant receives?

Why would an Indian store charge me in AED and not INR ?

I have Australia credit card and AED the exchange rate means I am being charged $191 AUD and if it was INR it would be only $186

Do I have an option to not accept any other currency other than INR when I pay by credit card (MasterCard) ?
#2 Apr 26th, 2009, 21:31
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Arab Emirates dirham, it looks like the store is doing a currency play. Some have connections to the currency trade and may know which way swings in that market are going. Timing is often employed this way in Europe. You can take this up with your credit card company. But, for 5 AUD I wouldn't break a sweat..
#3 Apr 26th, 2009, 21:38
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#3
Quote:
Originally Posted by Towle View Post Why would an Indian store charge me in AED and not INR ?
Was your credit card receipt in AED, and have you had receipts at other places in INR? I'm wondering whether it's MasterCard who did the conversion automatically.

Quote:
I have Australia credit card and AED the exchange rate means I am being charged $191 AUD and if it was INR it would be only $186
According to whose exchange rates? Credit card companies usually have pretty uncompetitive rates of exchange anyway. I'm not sure what happened exactly, did you agree a price in INR then the vendor did a calcuation using his own exchange rate and tell you what the price in AED was going to be, and charge that to your credit card?
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#4 Apr 26th, 2009, 23:49
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This is common practice in tourist areas in Europe - the shop "converts" the payment into your own currency (or here, it would seem, one of their choosing) and pockets a few percent of the transaction. If you complain loudly enough, they will usually let you pay in the local currency.

Whether you win or lose depends on your bank and the exchange rate the shop applies. I don't know what the situation in Australia is, but in the UK, most banks charge about 2.75% above the Visa or Mastercard "bi-directional" rate for foreign currency transactions. If the shop charges less than this, you win. However, there are a few cards here that charge 1% or even 0%, so for these it's always better to pay in the local currency.

Personally, I always try to pay in the local currency. You should anyway always read the receipt carefully before signing (e.g. check for the right number of zeros) and make sure you retain a legible copy of the receipt in case of problems. Don't pay in a currency if you don't know the exchange rate to your own.

I've never had any problems like this in India, but have found places in Europe (especially Ireland) that will try to rip you off quite badly with "dynamic currency conversion". I now boycott Budget Car Hire worldwide because they refused to let me pay in Euros at Cork airport.
#5 Apr 27th, 2009, 00:20
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Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post have found places in Europe (especially Ireland) that will try to rip you off quite badly with "dynamic currency conversion". I now boycott Budget Car Hire worldwide because they refused to let me pay in Euros at Cork airport.
How bizarre, I've never come across that before! Wonder what European law has to say about businesses refusing to be paid in Euros...
#6 Apr 27th, 2009, 00:32
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Haylo: I wondered about this as well, but didn't have time to discuss it at length as I had a plane to catch.

I travel very regularly in Europe on business and I'd heard about this practice/scam but never actually seen it until I went to Ireland last year. Since then, I've been offered to option to pay in GBP or local currency a few times (e.g. Geneva airport), but I only ever had it forced on me by Budget. It seems to be confined to tourist areas and businesses - I've almost never come across it when travelling for work.
#7 Apr 27th, 2009, 06:59
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I just checked on the net according to Oanda.com

it has AMT INR Rs.6700.00
and beneath AED 508.35

and then it says
Quote:
I have been given a choice of payment currency and agree to pay the above total amount and accept that the choice of currency is final I understand that this facility is provided by the bank and not the card association.
The bank is J & K Bank and it was from the MCA Asian Arts Emporium Anheri (just in case this is a scam to let everyone know what they are doing)
#8 Apr 27th, 2009, 07:09
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#8
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post This is common practice in tourist areas in Europe - the shop "converts" the payment into your own currency (or here, it would seem, one of their choosing) and pockets a few percent of the transaction. If you complain loudly enough, they will usually let you pay in the local currency.

Whether you win or lose depends on your bank and the exchange rate the shop applies. I don't know what the situation in Australia is, but in the UK, most banks charge about 2.75% above the Visa or Mastercard "bi-directional" rate for foreign currency transactions..
OK thanks for that advice. We are using a Wizard Clear Advantage MasterCard for our purchases here in India, as recommended by other travellers on this forum and also recommended by Australian Consumer Magazine "Choice" who did an report on the best methods to pay for overseas purchases. So we are not paying any foreign currency conversion fees or charges that I am aware of.

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