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2022-07-01 22:26:48 By : Ms. XIE NINA

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PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — Credit and debit cards are convenient, but they could be costing you more money.

“It’s nationwide. Everyone’s looking for a solution again as the credit card processing fees continue to increase,” Merchant Management Group and cHooZ President Rodney Friend said.

Many local restaurants, gas stations, and other business owners are either hiking the price of their products or charging customers the credit card processing fees.

Local consumers have mixed opinions on whether they want to see the additional charge or they want it to be included in the price of the product.

“I don’t mind they charge more,” local Chris Infinger said. “From what I’ve noticed, most local businesses that do charge more for a credit card processing fee at least tell you they are so it shows it on the bill.”

Many local merchants don’t realize how much they could save by charging customers for that credit card processing fee.

Trigo Deli Owner Gilbert Hamati said he hopped on the bandwagon six months ago.

“Everybody’s using credit cards and the fees they were just overwhelming to us,” Hamati said. “I mean we’re paying anywhere from $2,500 to $3,000 in credit card fees every month. That’s a lot of money for me, so we had to start doing it.”

Hamati uses a system called cHooZ.

Rodney Friend said hundreds of local businesses have adopted it this year too.

“Basically what it does is it’s an app that will increase the prices so the consumer doesn’t see but that way it covers the cost of the credit card fees,” Friend said. “We just think it’s a better experience for the consumer so the consumer doesn’t see the actual surcharge that’s on the bill it’s on the built-in menu price already.”

But some business owners said they will continue to pay these fees themselves.

“I think, you know, we’re a business and that’s a part of doing business,” The LH Bead Gallery Owner Lisa Hanna said.

Card processing fees now range from 3-5%.

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