Well, back in 1981 when i first pitched up here, automatic petrol pumps didn’t accept foreign cards, same in Italy. Maybe with the uncertainty of Britain’s financial fundamentals post Brexit they are being cautious.
Though Graham, you say “foreign”, do you mean “British”?
and a full bloodied French euro card for good measure
English CC reserved for payments in Sterling in the UK why suffer at the hands of the CC company for crap exchange rates when you can manage your own money with a little care
Some people need their bumps feeling!
I still have a UK account, and UK cards, but it wouldn’t occur to me to try to use them in France - surely the exchange rates are rubbish? I seem to remember last century that we had to have a Nationwide flex account as being the only one we could use here without incurring fees.
For heavens sake! I still have my Barclaycard and I certainly use it in France. It’s invaluable at the end of the month before my pension comes into my French account. I don’t use it every month by any means, but it’s great for managing cash flow in an emergency. OK I pay for the transaction and don’t get a good exchange rate but it’s been invaluable over the years.
Interesting @anon65742194 . If Drive is not accepting a UK card then presumably the Leclerc stores won’t be either. I must try it and report back. I’ve certainly never had a problem with Leclerc accepting Barclaycard in the past.
Since the likes of Starling Bank (who I notice won Best British Bank for the fourth year in a row today) and Monzo came on the British banking scene 6 or 7 years ago and offered no fees and pure MasterCard rate the legacy banks are gradually getting more competitive, reducing or dropping fees altogether and making less markup on the rate. Virgin Money, Santander, Nationwide and Metro Bank all offer products that are effectively ‘free’ to use in the EU, and of course there is the plethora of fintechs from currency cards like Revolut and Wise or the many interesting ‘we’re not a bank but we do the same job’ accounts, almost all of which offer no fees, things are definitely changing, you just have to make the effort and not sit on your hands and use the bank you’ve been with since you were seven years old or whatever like some people still do even if it’s not good value.
Errr…and the local stores including Leclerc are still accepting Barclaycard. No change. In fact one which always rejected contactless UK Mastercard has got a new till system and is now taking it contactless.
I have a feeling that because of the peculiar way french retail works with everything being franchised to regional owners/ coops, the drive is an entirely separate centrally owned operation from the bricks and mortar stores so there could well be quirks with the online side that have no bearing to card present transactions in stores. Quite a number of ecomm sites will try to force either a french BIN or a french billing address, partly as a fraud prevention measure and partly to try and avoid any extra charges that could be levied from non EU cards, so I could potentially see a situation where ordering things online, including via drive sites, gets more difficult. I can’t see mass UK card refusals happening anytime soon but people did warn some time ago that there was a real possibility, if unlikely, that using UK issued cards could get more expensive in the EU, but of course if there’s one thing we’ve all learnt about brexit, then continued with the UK response to Covid it’s that the UK has heard more than enough from experts who know what their talking about and prefers to listen to conspiracy nutters or gammons who talk about taking back control every other sentence instead these days.
Yes and I used a UK card today but this is Leclerc Essence which is a different part of the company with its own rules. Having said that I filled up with diesel at Leclerc today using a Barclays UK Card with no problems.
Grahame are you sure your card was refused and it wasn’t the petrol pump terminal at fault. That has happened to me several times using my French bank card. The terminals get dirty and the auto message comes up saying the card is not accepted. It took some time and complaining from other customers before they gave their terminals a service and now it all works fine again.
It was/is my experience that British cards were not accepted at petrol stations with automatic pumps. I know that originally the UK chip and PIN cards were not compatible with the French system - for a while we were issued with little printed cards which explained (in French) that, although the card had a “puce” it needed to be processed as the non-chip cards. Whether the fact that petrol pumps tend not to accept British cards is a legacy of that or for some other reason I am not sure.
A couple of years back a slightly forlorn holidaying Brit stopped me at the local Super U one Sunday and asked if I knew of any stations where he could get fuel using a British card so there were still problems up to as recently as 2-3 years ago. I felt somewhat bad having to tell him I didn’t really know as I’d solved the problem by having a French card. The best I could do was direct him to the next nearest petrol station and hope that he had better luck there.