Money Hack: Avoid credit card surcharges with Afterpay, Openpay and zipMoney

Elizabeth Barry 28 February 2017

shopping online

Why pay more than you have to?

Let's face it, credit cards are convenient. However, credit card providers know how convenient these pieces of plastic are and charge you a premium for it. On top of usual credit card fees and interest, credit card surcharges can sting you considerably depending on how much you spend.

While surcharges on credit cards are technically charged to cover the cost of the merchant processing the payment, some extend into the realms of the ridiculous. The situation got so bad that the government stepped in to regulate them. Currently, you can be charged between 1-3% of your purchase for an in-store or online payment.

Long story short: surcharges still exist. Here is how to avoid them.

The hack

Instead of using your credit card to purchase something, sign up for an interest-free payment plan with Afterpay, Openpay or zipMoney. You can either link your credit card to your Afterpay or Openpay account and have your payment automatically deducted, or make a BPAY transaction from your credit card with zipMoney (also zipPay for smaller purchases).

You aren't charged to use these platforms, except for a small processing fee of between $2.50 to $3.95 charged with long-term Openpay plans and a $5 monthly fee with zipPay if you have an outstanding balance after 60 days.

So, by signing up for an interest-free payment plan you can avoid the credit card surcharge. You might also be able to avoid credit card interest if you pay your debt back in full at the end of your statement period.


finder money hacks is a bi-weekly roundup of the latest ways to improve your finances. Check back every Wednesday and Saturday for new hacks.

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