Payment regulation may impact some card purchases from 8th March 2022

If you use a streaming service, shop online, have a subscription App – some of these purchases may soon be declined

From 8th March 2022, if you have your card details stored for future use with a retailer, have recurring or variable debit card purchases like subscription or utility services, some of these purchases may be declined. Below we’ve explained more about how this payments regulation may affect online purchases.

What is a recurring or variable purchase?

This is where you have given your card details to be stored for future use or to pay a recurring or variable bill, similar to a direct debit. Examples of these are:

  • your gas bill
  • online take away service
  • streaming/TV subscription
  • subscription App
  • gym membership
  • online shopping for groceries/clothes
  • additional charges for a hotel payment for example, mini-bar use, breakfast on the morning of check-out

These can be fixed or variable amounts, and at fixed or variable times during the year.

Why are these affected?

It’s a payments regulation and some retailers – both large and small - may not be fully ready for these changes. This means you may see purchases declined. The regulation requires Strong Customer Authentication (SCA) rules, which requires retailers to flag purchases in a certain way so we can process them.

What can I do if a purchase is declined?

If this happens and you’re already set up for SCA, then don’t worry – it’s not likely to be a problem with your card but the purchase may have been flagged incorrectly by the retailer. The retailer should be ready soon, and in the meantime you can get in touch with them to see if they have another way to pay.

Does every purchase need to be confirmed?

No, however the retailer needs to flag the purchase correctly. You may be asked to confirm the first purchase when setting up a subscription or utility service, similar to how you would confirm an online purchase.