Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Why My Credit Card Is Not Working

Don't Miss

How Do Emv Cards Solve The Problem

Credit card chip not reading easy fix

Earlier when magnetic stripes were in use, thieves quickly copying our information after getting card swiped. But in EMV technology, the card generates a unique code for each transaction while the cardholders information remains the same.;

So even if the thieves somehow managed to copy the code from POS transaction, they could do nothing with that piece of information as your card will generate new code in the next transaction. This makes it impossible for fraudsters to use credit or debit card information.

You Have Incorrect Billing Information

Sometimes a credit card decline can come from something as simple as misinformation. If you input your credit card number or even your billing address incorrectly, it could lead to a declined charge. Fortunately, a second attempt should remedy the situation. Just dont try too many times or it may be flagged as fraudulent activity.

Is The Gift Card Balance More Than The Purchase Amount

Visa gift cards are linked to bank accounts that cannot be overdrawn. If the purchase is greater than the funds available, the card may be declined. To use a Visa gift card for partial payment, ask the cashier to split the purchase into two transactions. First, deduct the full amount of the gift card, then pay the balance of the purchase with another form of payment.

It used to be that you could not use a Visa gift card to buy anything that cost more than the balance of the gift card, but payment processing terminals are much more sophisticated now. I always make a point to tell the cashier that Im paying with a gift card and whether or not I believe it will cover the full purchase price. This allows both of us to be prepared for a split-tender transactionor completing the transaction with a second form of payment.

Read here for more information on Split-Tender Transactions.

When the gift card balance is less than the transction amount, use this trick to make a partial gift card payment online.

Read Also: How To Pay Best Buy Credit Card On App

Your Bank Has Placed A Hold On The Card

Sometimes a bank will refuse a charge because the attempted purchase is not a normal or expected purchase for the customer. Banks have automated fraud detection systems that looks for suspicious purchases, and exactly how they make these decisions is something of a mystery.

You may need to call your bank to ensure that you card has not had a “hold” put on it because it suspected that the charges you have been attempting were fraudulent.

This particular problem often affects customers with non-US based credit cards, since banks outside the U.S. may be suspicious of a sudden charge to the card from a U.S. address.

If this is the problem, it can usually be corrected by calling your bank, telling them that the charge was declined and asking if there is a “hold” on the card or anything else that would prevent the card from being used.

No Other Payment Option

Why Is My Credit Card Not Working?

It happens. Sometimes you leave the house with only your ID and a credit card. If you find yourself in this situation weigh your options. Can a friend cover you? Can you leave your purchase, run home and come back later? In many cases the grocery store will hold your order, although you may need to put the ice cream back before it melts.

If these are not an option, speak calmly with the merchant about your options. Depending on the size of your purchase they may take your information or hold your ID and allow you to pay later, Make sure you are comfortable with the reputation of the establishment before leaving your ID.

Also Check: Does Td Bank Have Visa Gift Cards

Your Purchase Was Flagged As Fraud

Because is the most common type of identity theft, card issuers are constantly on the lookout for suspicious activity. While a legitimate purchase being flagged as potential fraud can be annoying in the moment, it can ultimately protect you. If identity theft goes undetected, someone could steal and sell your personal information and run up significant charges on your card.

When your card is declined and you know you have plenty of available credit, call the phone number on the back of the card. A representative should be able to lift any freezes the issuer put in place.

If you’re planning to travel abroad, call your card issuer ahead of time and let them know. They can add a note to your account so you’re less likely to get declined while you’re away. However, it’s smart to carry backup cards or other forms of payment when you travel internationally.

When possible, consider using a card with an EMV chip, a contactless card or a mobile wallet for payments. EMV chips tend to be more secure than magnetic swiping strips, though they can still be copied by fraudsters. Contactless and mobile payments lower the risk that the card data will be copied or that the card itself will be stolen.

Still, it’s helpful to review your transaction history every few days to check for unauthorized purchases. You also may be able to set up text alerts or smartphone notifications for every purchase, or purchases over a certain amount, charged to your card.

Its Been Demagnetized Or Scratched

The magnetic stripe on some credit cards may stop working after the card has been too close to a magnet or even a cell phone. When the credit card has been demagnetized, you may experience a credit card read error or, in certain cases, nothing will happen after the swipe.

Scratches or bends on the magnetic stripe may also prevent your credit card from being swiped. Your card number can still be manually entered, but youll have to get a new credit card to make swipe purchases.

Recommended Reading: Cabela’s Credit Card

Exposure To Strong Magnets

The magnetic strip on your credit card doesnt play well with other magnets, although it takes a fairly strong magnet to actually cause your card to stop working. Bringing your card into a room where an MRI machine is operating could do it, for instance.

To be safe, limit your cards exposure to magnets and magnetic devices.

Why Does The Payment Terminal Say Transaction Cannot Be Processed

Why is my Visa gift card not working?

The most common cause of that lately is a contactless card that is EMV chip card-only and the merchant doesnt have contactless EMV enabled, but they do have magnetic stripe enabled.

Video: How EMV chips are made

So, the card reader detects a contactless card, but at that point, it doesnt know that its a chip card. And sometimes it picks up that contactless signal from the card even if the consumer is trying to swipe or insert it.

It depends on where the contactless antenna is located on the terminal. If the card passes by the antenna on its way to be inserted, it may try to start a contactless transaction, but then cant proceed because it doesnt support chip card-only contactless.

Also Check: First Premier Program Fee

Why Isn’t My Credit Card Working Online

If your credit card isn’t working online, then there are two likely culprits. First, double-check what you entered into the text fields. A typo or accidentally using an old zip code could result in a declined transaction. If a typo isn’t the problem, then the issue may be with your account. Call customer service and ask if they know why your online purchase is getting denied.

Do Magnets Ruin Credit Card Chips

Some people believe strong magnets can damage computer chips. I think this is a holdover from the days of floppy disks, when strong magnets did indeed demagnetize and erase floppies. Magnets can damage the magnetic strip on a credit or debit card for the same reason they can damage old-school floppy disks. A generation of people grew up being told that magnets damage computers, so thats hard to unlearn.

But the chips themselves dont use magnetics. Theyre made of silicon and nonferrous metals, so theres no reason for magnets to have any effect on them.;In 30 years of upgrading and repairing computers and other electronic equipment, Ive never had a problem with magnets damaging any computer chip. I frequently use magnetic screwdrivers so I dont lose screws.

Ive heard stories about magnets destroying chips, but its never been firsthand, and never from another computer professional. Its far more likely that it was static electricity, not magnetization, that damaged the chip. Chips are very sensitive to static electricity, even small static shocks that dont produce a spark you can see or feel.

Keeping magnets away from your chipped credit or debit card is a good idea to protect the magnetic strip. Not touching the chip directly is a good idea to protect the chip from static shocks. But I wouldnt be paranoid about magnets coming near the chip.

Also Check: Is Target Credit Card Good

What Can You Do If Your Card Was Declined Online

Use an alternative payment method

Many online businesses and merchants offer more than just one payment method. The payment alternatives can be anything from direct debit to their bank account, online payment providers , or money transfer services .;

Check if you can get a virtual card with your bank

Many modern-style online banks allow you to get a virtual card or disposable virtual card for one-time use.

Dont use someone elses card

When your card gets declined, and you run out of options, it might seem like a great idea to use your husbands or friends card instead. However, all secure websites , dont let a transaction get through unless the card holders name matches the accounts name.

Why Did I Suddenly Receive A Replacement Card For A Chip Card Thats Not Even Close To Expiring With No Explanation From The Card Issuer Are They Wearing Out Already

Why ban on credit and debit card charges may not be such a ...

They wont ordinarily need to do that unless its a security issue or the application on the card has changed substantially. And sometimes they purposely dont tell people why, especially if theyre updating the card because they found a security flaw in their application.

Suffice to say, issuers wont do this unless they have to, because it costs a lot of money to reissue .

You May Like: Where Can I Use My Bestbuy Credit Card

Your Card Is Worn Out

While countless transactions can take place through the cloud without skipping a beat, your actual physical credit cards arent immortal, and sooner or later theyre going to wear out. This could happen if your card is scratched, bent, split, or cracked. In addition, if the strip on the card wears out or the chip is damaged, it may cease to function properly.

When that happens, youll need to replace the card to use it normally again, although retailers can often still directly input the card number itself into their payment system to complete a purchase.

Youve Incorrectly Entered Your Information

When your fingers are flying across a keyboard or tapping on a phone screen, its easy to make mistakes. Thats certainly true when youre entering information for an online credit card purchase. Perhaps the card number is off by one number, or maybe youve mistyped your address or birthdate.

Whatever the case, incorrect information could lead to your credit card being declined. Fortunately, the fix is simple: Either plug in the correct data, or be sure to update automatically stored data.

Don’t Miss: Cabelas Club Card

The Type Of Card You Have Isnt Accepted

The Issue

Not all credit cards are created equally. Certain boast wider acceptance than others, with Visa and Mastercard leading the pack.

Discover is accepted widely in the United States, but not as much in other countries. And in some countries Discover cards arent accepted at all.

American Express is a popular network, but its known for the higher interchange fees it charges businesses that take its cards. As a result, Amex cards are accepted in a considerable selection of countries, but whether theyre widely accepted within a given country varies.

Insider tip

Theres also the occasional merchant that wont take a particular credit card. Costcoonly accepts Visa credit cards, for example, and credit cards on other networks arent allowed .

The Solution

Most merchants make it clear which types of credit cards they accept. If youre shopping online, look for the websites FAQ section. Youll usually find a network list with other common payment questions. Or you can do a Google search and you might find the answer on a different site.

As for brick-and-mortar stores, youll probably find signs or stickers depicting which cards the merchant accepts on the door or near the cash register. If all else fails, ask a cashier, and he or she should be able to tell you.

Issues On The Side Of Payment Processor Or Merchant

Why is my Visa card not working?

During the electronic processing of credit card transactions, your information passes through several stages before the transaction can be approved. If there are any technical difficulties or disruptions along the way, your credit card may be declined. Or, more often, the merchant will hold your information and try to run the transaction again once the problems have been resolved.

Theres not much you can do to fix this issue, since your card itself is working as intended. Try contacting the merchant and/or your credit card issuer and inform them of the problem. They will likely ask you to wait until they figure it out, or instruct you how to fix it.

Read Also: How To Pay Best Buy Credit Card On App

Are You Trying To Make An International Purchase

If your Visa gift card is not working, check to see where the website is located. I know that might seem strange, but Visa gift cards issued in the United States must be used in the United States. Visa gift cards may not be used for purchases outside of the U.S. and that includes purchases on non-U.S. websites or by telephone.

Although Visa gift cards may not be used outside of the country, here is a list of gift cards that can be used in Canada and other countries.

Fix The Magnetic Stripe

Magnetic stripe cards are more prone to damage than contactless cards and may stop working due to wear and tear. Keeping them close to your mobile phone or other devices, such as MRI machines, can speed up this process, says Discover. If your card’s magnetic stripe is worn out, cover it with clear tape when paying in stores. This technique is said to reduce the signal loss caused by heavy usage or physical damage.

Unfortunately, clear tape won’t help if your debit or credit card is bent. In such cases, you should first try to flatten the card. Place it on a flat surface and then cover it with a towel. Run the iron over it for up to 30 seconds, applying slight pressure to the magnetic stripe. Repeat if necessary just make sure you use a low-temperature setting.

Another option is to use a hairdryer to heat up and flatten your credit card. Since most cards are made from polyvinyl chloride , they become moldable when exposed to high temperatures. Place the card on your desk or table and then heat it with a blow dryer for about 30 seconds. When you’re done, try to flatten it out with your hands or place it under a heavy object and leave it there for a couple of days.

Recommended Reading: What Is The Annual Fee For First Premier Credit Card

How To Manage Your Credit Card Responsibly

Admittedly, when you get your first credit card, it can be tempting to spend. While theres nothing wrong with charging your purchases, you want to make sure youre being responsible with your credit card.

First off, if youre concerned about costs, look for a no-fee credit card. There are many credit cards available that have no annual fee and offer some benefits. If youre paying your entire bill on time every month, you wont be paying anything.

When you get your first credit card, the limit offered may shock you. You could easily be approved for $5,000+. That doesnt mean you need to spend all of it; you just have access to that amount. If youre worried that you may spend to your limit and run into debt issues, you can quickly call your provider and ask for a lower limit.

Another way to easily manage your finances is to use any available tools. For example, the student edition of the RBC mobile app has a built-in feature called NOMI Insights. It analyzes your spending and gives you insights so you can make better financial decisions. For example, it might tell you that youve spent more on utilities, food delivery, and ridesharing apps this month compared to previous ones. That might encourage you to cook at home, take public transit or turn off your lights.

Youve Made A Purchase While Traveling


The Issue

Purchases processed in an unusual location may lead to a flagged card. Whether youve driven to another state for the weekend or youre looking to charge a luxurious meal in the heart of Paris, you run the risk of a declined transaction if youre not normally associated with that location.

The Solution

Most major issuers make it simple to set travel notices online, but you can set a notice by phone, too. Informing your issuer of your plans before taking off should prevent security measures from interfering with interstate and international purchases, although it can still happen.

You May Like: Which Credit Card Has No International Transaction Fee

Your Bank Detects Fraud

If you attempt to make several purchases in a row or try to charge an unusually large amount of money in a single purchase, it may trigger a fraud detection;alert from your banking institution. If that happens, your card will decline the transaction and you will have to call or go online to confirm that you were the one attempting to make the charge.

More articles

Popular Articles