Airport Restaurants and Retailers Join Merchants Payments Coalition

Contact: J. Craig Shearman
(202) 257-3678

WASHINGTON, July 9, 2023 – The Merchants Payments Coalition announced today that the Airport Restaurant and Retail Association has joined the coalition.

“Airport merchants continue to recover from the pandemic and still face many challenges including high credit card swipe fees that drive up the cost of doing business and prices for our customers,” ARRA Executive Director Andrew Weddig said. “Our members desperately need relief from unjustifiably high swipe fees and we know the banking industry’s scare tactics about rewards going away are false. Bringing competition to swipe fees will only help businesses that rely on travel and tourism.”

ARRA members provide food, beverages, retail products and services at airports across the country and employ more than 110,000 workers.

“We welcome ARRA members to the fight for fair, competitive swipe fees,” MPC Executive Committee member and National Association of Convenience Stores General Counsel Doug Kantor said. “These businesses see the impact of these out-of-control fees every day and their involvement shows that swipe fees touch virtually every merchant whether they do business downtown, at the mall, online or even at the airport.”

ARRA joins MPC as Congress is considering the Credit Card Competition Act, which is aimed at rising credit card swipe fees.

Visa and Mastercard – which control more than 80 percent of the market – each centrally set swipe fees charged by all banks that issue cards under their brands, and also block transactions from being processed over other networks that could do the job with lower fees and better security. The legislation would require banks with at least $100 billion in assets to enable cards they issue to be processed over at least two unaffiliated networks – Visa or Mastercard plus a competitor like NYCE, Star or Shazam. That would make networks compete over fees, security and service and is expected to save merchants and their customers
$16.4 billion a year.

Credit and debit card swipe fees have more than doubled over the past decade and hit a record $172.05 billion last year. The fees are most merchants’ highest operating cost after labor and drive up prices by more than $1,100 a year for the average family.

Current MPC national association members include the American Beverage Licensees, the American Booksellers Association, the Asian American Hotel Owners Association, the Coalition of Franchisee Associations, FMI – the Food Industry Association, the Energy Marketers of America, the Independent Restaurant Coalition, the Institute for Local Self Reliance’s Independent Business Initiative, the International Franchise Association, the Merchant Advisory Group, the National Association of College Stores, the National Association of Convenience Stores, the National Association of Theater Owners, the National Association of Truck Stop Operators, the National Federation of Independent Businesses, the National Grocers Association, the National Lumber and Building Materials Dealers Association, the National Retail Federation, the National Restaurant Association, the National Sporting Goods Association, the Outdoor Hospitality Industry and the Retail Industry Leaders Association. In addition to national associations, hundreds of state merchant associations are also members.

About MPC
Merchants Payments Coalition represents retailers, supermarkets, convenience stores, gasoline stations, online merchants and others fighting for a more competitive and transparent card system that is fair to consumers and merchants. Follow MPC on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn for the latest on swipe fees.