All Smiths locations, including Kimball Junction and Heber City will stop accepting Visa credit cards next month.
The Salt Lake headquartered Smiths, a division of Kroger, announced that they will no longer accept Visa credit cards starting on April 3rd. Smith’s spokeswoman Aubriana Martindale clarified that all other current forms of payment, including Visa debit cards, will continue to be accepted.
“The reason we’ve made this decision is because of the excessive interchange and network fees that Visa and it’s issuing banks have charged retailers," Martindale explained. "Which unfortunately drives up food prices for our customers. Visa fees are the highest of any credit card brand that we accept at Smiths and they even exceed the grocery store margins in our highly competitive food industry. We know this may be an inconvenience for our customers, but we want to help them the best that we can to ease them through this transition. That’s why we’re making the announcement today and have four weeks to communicate to every single customer, so no one is surprised or caught off guard.”
The company hopes that announcing the change a month in advance will prevent inconveniences in the future. Martindale explained what would happen if after April 3rd a customer forgot about the change.
“We will allow the consumer to use any other type of form of payment," Martindale continued. "At some locations we also have banks if they need to pull those funds out. We do have some processes in place where we’ll hold that grocery cart for the customer, and they can return by the end of that day by 10:00 pm with a different form of payment with their grocery basket in hand. Again, due to that inconvenience we have some great offers to support our customers through that process.”
The chain is also offering two times the fuel points from now through May 21 as well as other promotions in order to appease customers.