My Credit Card = DENIED!

by Darwin on July 30, 2011

I learned something new tonight. I was out picking up some Indian food (which was very disappointing by the way – new management=new crappy cook…but I digress) and my credit card was declined when I went to pay for the food.  I said, “that’s impossible, I just used it ten minutes ago for another errand”.  He ran it again and confirmed it was being declined.  I figured it had to be their crappy system, so I gave him my other card (I always carry 2 cards and we charge EVERYTHING to optimize our cash back and get $1000/year tax free).  The next card went through, confirming my first card was in fact declined.  So, I grabbed the food, got in the car and made a pissed off call to the card company.

What they told me was that any time you have more than 12 transactions in a day, the card is automatically locked out.  I found that odd, especially if someone’s on a trip, at the mall or whatever.  In our case, both my wife and I share the same card, so that’s like 6 swipes each in a day will wipe us out?!  The customer service rep said this was common across the industry.  I find it hard to believe but this is what I was told.

Have You Ever Heard of This?

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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Financial Samurai July 30, 2011 at 11:40 pm

Wow, I’ve never heard this! What you guys doing swiping 12X a day though?


Darwin July 30, 2011 at 11:59 pm

That’s what I’m trying to figure out :>
But seriously, she’s a stay at home mom. So, on Friday morning for instance, let’s say she hits the mall, buys the kids some clothes, shoes, something at the disney store, panera bread and gets gas. That’s like 5-6. Then she orders 2 gifts on line during the day for upcoming birthday parties. 8. So, I come home. I have to pick up some chemicals for the pool, pick up that card reader for the camera I’ve been meaning to get forever, grab dinner and gas. Boom! 12 uses! You’re out! It’s not an obnoxiously unreasonable day, probably under $200 spending in total – but it was 12 charges nonetheless!


krantcents July 30, 2011 at 11:57 pm

I never heard of that either. I wonder how they treat two people on the same account? Would allow twelve each or in total.


Darwin July 31, 2011 at 12:00 am

Apparently it’s 12 total no matter how many people are on the card. Seems strange, but this guy made it sound like it’s an industry standard.


Len Penzo July 31, 2011 at 2:28 pm

Wow. I never heard of that, but if it’s true it’s very disconcerting to me. I only have one credit card. Note to self: Look into applying for a back-up credit card, pronto, just in case.

All the best,

Len Penzo dot Com


Debt Consolidation Nation July 31, 2011 at 10:25 pm

I have quite a low daily limit on my card, $500 and occationally i have been caught before


Moneycone August 1, 2011 at 7:26 am

I automatically get locked out if I use my card outside the country (without informing the cc company) or with a non-domestic site. I haven’t heard of a daily limit though.


No Debt MBA August 1, 2011 at 8:48 am

I’ve never heard of that either, but I can’t think of a time when I might have hit 12 swipes. It’s much more common for me to have none!


Money Beagle August 1, 2011 at 11:38 am

I’ve never heard of this. I have called my card company before we travel because I’ve heard that if they suddenly start seeing a bunch of transactions from a location outside of where you normally make purchases, they flag it as a problem. We called before our Hawaii honeymoon in 2007, just to make sure we didn’t get locked out and stressed out!


Susan G August 1, 2011 at 2:09 pm

Yup, I’ve heard of this. When I do my Christmas shopping, I usually call the cc company and tell them that I’ll be having a larger volume of transactions than normal and they flag the account in their system (got stopped once and it was a pain to juggle all the bags and boxes and try to have this call on a barely charged cell phone in the mall with Christmas music playing).

I also call them when I travel so I don’t get stopped when I’m away. We were stopped checking into a hotel for our vacation one year because we had 3 out of town transactions, and they called our house to verify the usage – and obviously, we weren’t there (we were on our vacation). It took up 45 minutes of my vacation that it shouldn’t have, so now I call them before I do anything out of the ordinary with my card. It’s just easier that way.

It’s for my protection, so I don’t really mind.


Invest It Wisely August 10, 2011 at 11:14 pm

I read this a little earlier during my trip and did find it strange. I have not personally used so many transactions myself though, but I have run into similar limits with a debit card though it was over a month and not a day!


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