Malaysian Travel Advisory.
World Wide acceptance of MasterCard & Visa? I think not. Since I have been in the Kuala Lumpar metro area. I have been denied purchases from a grocery store up to a brand name outlet (Canon) at a mega mall. All accept MC & Visa, but if you do not have a “Chip” on the front of your card it will not be accepted at establishments that only have the “Passover” (Scan) method for your card. These chips seem to be only for cards (Credit / Debit) issued within Malaysia, which seems to be most if not all cards.
The establishments who use this method claim they cannot swipe your card. Maybe, but I find it hard to believe there is not a backup such as typing in your credit card number. Most establishments do not solely use the Pass Over method to charge your card though. But if they do, be prepared to have a wad of Ringgets in your pocket.
Well, I guess I will be buying that Canon on my next visit to the U.S. But what the hell, they are cheaper there as well as most electronics.
Is this method good for the Malaysian economy with the mass of Tourists who now visit MY? I think not.
This is the first country I have visited with this restriction.
Are all banks here owned by the Govt.? Hmmm…
As I mentioned, most shops do not employ this method, but be prepared for it.
Update to the Original Post:
As I entered ACE Hardware recently in Malaysia I noticed they had the device for reading credit cards via the Pass Over Chip method. Eager to test out another establishment, I proceeded to buy something I really didn’t even need. 🙂
Upon presenting my chipless MasterCard, the clerk asked for help on how to process it without asking me for a card that did have the chip. I liked this, the clerk was making an effort. The ACE employees, still unsure how to process the card, waved over a supervisor who seemed confused also and promptly disappeared into a back room “with” my card, didn’t like that part.
The store manager soon appeared and instructed the clerk on how to enter the card number manually by utilizing the 3 digit security code on the back. The backup method I have always seen in the past, U.S. or elsewhere.
It seems it is up to the establishments discretion on whether to go through the “hassle” of manual entry using a keypad to complete the sale. ACE did handle the process professionally and apologized for the inconvenience. This was a matter of training the staff and of an establishment desiring to make the sale and gain a returning customer.
I still carry a wad of ringgets though.
I would love some feedback on this from anyone.