How To Use Your Credit Card At Businesses That Don't Accept Them

by Tom Egelhoff

This tip of the week comes from and old friend of mine. Angela Bauer is the Business Development Rep for our local Costco® here in Bozeman, Montana. I ran into her at a recent trade show and was asking here if there were any plans to accept Visa® or MasterCard® in the future. They presently accept Amercian Express as their only credit card.
She had a great suggestion. Most Visa and Mastercard accounts offer printed checks that you can use that are charged back to your account. So, if you have suppliers or small companies that you deal with that do not accept credit cards here is a way to still use your card. You can order five or ten from the customer service number on the back of your credit card.

Using a check does two very important things. 1.) You receive the supplies and have 25 to 28 days to pay the bill. 2.) If you have a credit card that you use only for business (highly recommended) the check expense will still show up on the credit card statement so there is less chance of missing it as with a personal or business check. ( I always forget to write what the check was for in the memo area.) All your expenses are still on one statement.

Caution: The credit card company may pass the merchant fee on to you for using a check instead of the credit card. Make sure you know how much the fee will be for using this kind of check and weigh the value against out of pocket cash today. The bank that issued the card should have this information for you.


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