A consultation will be launched this summer regarding the charges that businesses can apply when customers buy products or services using credit or debit cards.
The application of surcharges by businesses, such as airlines, has previously been targeted by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT), and resulted in voluntary agreements with some of them.
However, the government is now required to bring in legislation to prohibit businesses charging a greater fee than the actual costs of processing such card transactions by December 2013 in order to meet the EU Consumer Rights Directive.
Therefore, the 12-week consultation will consider when the ban should come into force and how it should be applied.
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