CHOICE membership

Credit cards vs Debit cards


Does your card have a chip for insertion in the end (I am not familiar with the Aldi consoles, but with many other retailers)? inserting the chip rather than swiping keeps the chip some distance from the tap and go chip reader.


@phb got it. Swiping is not the same as inserting it with a chip beause of the design of the terminals.


Please don’t treat this as financial advice and do your own research before you make a decision

If you are buying anything from a place where they accept credit cards and if people can earn points (Woolies, Coles, etc) and all the prices include the costs of the points plus the credit card fees.

So if you are not earning points (it may be pennies), then you are essentially paying for other peoples card fees and points.

If you shop at those places regularly is does not make sense to pay using a debit card or cash. You should be using a credit card that gives you maximum points. For example, if you regularly buy from Coles, get a credit card from Coles. That way you are earning more points.

But you have to make sure that you pay off your monthly credit card bill in full. If you can’t then you are better of paying using cash or a debit card.

The points works the best if you redeem them for flights, but if that does not suit you, then you can buy gift cards (the conversion rate is very low). I have not seen any good deals on goods to be honest and most of the time it’s cheaper to buy a gift card and then buy what you want using that gift card.

If you are an Aldi customer, there’s no reason for you to switch to Coles, Woolies for points.

So if you can be disciplined to pay off your monthly credit card bill in full, use a card that can get you points and use it whenever there’s no extra cost for using it.


I think if I had inserted the card to read the chip it would not have read the tap and go feature.


I am not sure but I think if it’s a visa debit card, card charges are charged for processing the transaction jus like a credit card. Most merchants don’t pass this cost onto the customers.


Probably because the wave reader is usually at the top of the terminal, and the slot is at the bottom so inserting the card is out of range. I don’t think there is a sufficient processing delay if a terminal reads an unintended wave and the card is then inserted. If there was such a delay it would defeat the speed of transaction, one of the ‘selling points’.

I believe you will find they do when a Visa/MC logo debit card is processed as a credit transaction (waved or credit is selected) when they have credit surcharges. Why? Because the business is billed for the transaction as a credit transaction.

That being written anecdotally fewer merchants seem to be adding distinct surcharges as compared to a few years ago because of customer pushback. Most businesses have finally taken sales and marketing 101 and are bundling costs of plastic transactions into their prices. The higher price is opaque but a surcharge is right in your face so slightly higher prices but no surcharge is almost always more palatable to a customer as the economy is increasingly plastic based.


I’ve done some doublechecking with merchants other than Aldi and I must be very lucky because Aldi is the only merchant I use, which adds a surcharge. Since I dont shop there all the time, its not really an issue overall.