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What Sucks – $75 Limit at Gas Stations

Does it tick anyone else off that you can’t fill your tank all the way at most gas pumps? According to statistics that have just been made up by me, 19 out of 20 gas stations have the policy that your credit or debit card are limited to $75 per transaction. Is this the station’s policy or the credit card company’s?  Here are the reasons this annoys me so….

Unless you’re worried that you might overdraw your account, most people want to fill their tank up all the way. That’s why they’re called “filling stations” instead of “filling-as-much-as-$75-will-get-you stations”.

So why do they even have a limit on the amount you can charge on your card? At first, I thought it was a precaution your credit card company mandates to minimize charges if you have your card stolen. I realized this didn’t make sense the first time I reswiped my card at the same pump I just maxed out on. It totally let me keep filling up right where I left off!! What good does that do you if a thief could just keep swiping and swiping as much as they want?

My thinking now is that it is the gas/convenience store’s decision. Maybe they don’t want people filling up $90 worth of gas if they only have $60 in their account. That might…might….explain the limit on debit cards. But why limit credit cards? Most credit cards have limits into the thousands of dollars. Why quibble over the extra 8 or 10 it might take to fill your tank the rest of the way up. Dear gasoline merchants: I want to give you $80 or more! Why do you only want to accept $75? What will we do if gas ever goes up to 8 or 10 dollars a gallon like it already has in some European countries? Will we have to run our credit cards 5 times in a row just to fill our tanks?? Also, why does the pump ask you if you want a receipt when it never prints out the receipt??

It all seems like a big inconvenience for a place that calls itself a “convenience” store.

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