Fees & Fraud! Big Changes Coming Down The “Pipeline”

How Visa & Mastercard’s fee changes and fraud protection changes will impact you


There are big changes coming to convenience and fuel retailers that just might affect you. Spoiler: It’s not all bad. Many of these changes are intended to provide convenience to your customers and protection for you.

EMV-compliant retailers should experience increased liability protection for larger transactions. This should also help lower processing fees (depending on your processor. More about that later!)

Before we go any further, a quick disclosure: Visa has published several changes. Although some information is floating around about the changes Mastercard plans to implement, no official word has been released at the time of this article. We’ll focus on Visa and the official changes coming down the proverbial “pipeline.”

  1. Increases to Pump Limits (Effective May 22, 2022):

In response to the increase in fuel prices Visa is:

  • Increasing Custom Payment Service Qualification (CPS) transaction limits
    • Visa will increase the maximum transaction limit to qualify for CPS interchange programs to reduce “downgrades” (fancy terminology for higher interchange fees)
    • Applies to all Visa credit, debit, and prepaid products
    • The maximum limit for “downgrades” increases from $125 to $500
  • Increasing Automated Fuel Dispenser (“AFD” or “Pump with card readers”) authorization limits
    • EMV transaction limits will increase from $125-$175
    • Non-EMV transaction limits at the pump stay the same:
      • $100 for non-Fleet cards at non-EMV enabled AFDs
      • $150 for magnetic-stripe -read Fleet cards
      • $350 for chip-read Fleet cards
  1. Chargeback Protection Increases (Effective May 22, 2022)
      • Chargeback Protection for Pre-Auth: For Non-Fleet customer transactions, chargeback protection limits for AFD $1 Status Check authorizations at EMV-enabled terminals will increase from $125 to $175 (regardless of how the card is read or the country of issuance).
      • Protection for Lost or Stolen Cards: Liability for Lost or Stolen fraud for all authorized transactions at EMV-enabled AFDs will sit with the card issuer. Considering the investment made by fuel merchants to update to EMV-enabled AFD terminals, this is a welcomed change!


    For some, these pump authorization limit changes are long overdue.

    Owners of large vehicles, commercial trucks, and now even some standard size vehicles run into a problem when fuel prices rise to the point that a full tank can cost well over the authorization limit.

    !is results in swiping a card multiple times to fill up the tank or going inside the store to prepay for fuel. Both options diminish the convenience aspect of a C-store!

    Retailers are sometimes paying 2x the transaction fees for a single fill-up simply because of the number of transactions required to top off. With these changes, those who have upgraded their pumps to be EMV compliant will now begin seeing increased benefits to their bottom line.


    Glad you asked! It can be daunting to remain vigilant running a business riddled with compliance rubrics, government regulations, and ever-changing rules. Add the fact that U.S. inflation is at a record high and retail margins are inherently slim, business practices will need to evolve to not only survive but thrive.

    A few simple suggestions to consider:

    1. Update Pump limits: Review the pump limits set in your Point of Sale (POS) system to determine if they are set at the limits that best fit your business needs.
    2. Update Equipment: Rate increases and chargeback liability can largely be avoided and/or mitigated by adopting technologies designed to improve security.

    {e.g., EMV-enabled hardware, current software updates, and firewall devices provided by approved Managed Network Service Providers (MNSPs)}

    1. Talk to your Credit Card Processor about any unnecessary fees you may be paying! Do you have the right fee structure? Are you paying any recurring non-compliance fees? Are you paying penalty fees? Most can be avoided! For more about this topic visit: pixcardprocessing.com/pricing-faqs

     As with anything in life, the more knowledge you have, the better equipped you are in dealing with unforeseen and uncontrollable circumstances. Often, we cannot control or stop changes from happening. However, we can control how we operate our businesses, change business practices accordingly and partner with organizations that amplify your success. The late linguistic poet, Tupac Amaru Shakur, said it best: “!ings will never be the same, that’s just the way it is.”


KC Cook

Founder / President