New Zealand's Commerce Commission has come to an agreement with Visa, a credit card issuer, that will allow retailers to pass on transaction costs to customers.
You see, in the past, retailers took the cost of providing credit card facilities as a "cost of doing business" and factored it into their prices.
When you use your credit card (as from 17 April next year), you'll likely see a surcharge of 1.8% on your bill.
And knowing the way that almost everything in New Zealand is micro-managed - go to a restaurant on a public holiday and they'll surcharge you, because wage costs are higher on those NINE DAYS out of 365... - you'll also be charged for paying cash ("because someone has to count the money and take it to the bank and then there's the theft insurance premium to pay") or by cheque ("because we then have to hire people who can read...")
Forget the fact for a minute that a BIG chunk of a retailer's sales on credit cards are either impulse purchases or planned purchases that are brought forward out of the convenience of "being able to pay later".
And if you take it to extremes (which someone surely will) they'll start charging at supermarkets if you don't use self-checkout ("because we have to provide staff, you see").
And buying a bottle of wine will attract a "Supervisory Charge" ("because an adult has to walk over to the till to approve your purchase")
File this under "Disappearance of common-sense".