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If I open an online store and allow my buyers to pay by card, can I receive those payments on my own international credit/debit cards? Or are those cards only for spending?

If this is possible, what are the disadvantages compared to using a payment gateway?

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  • Even if it were possible, why would you want to do this? Cash is king, as they say.
    – user26460
    Commented Jul 10, 2023 at 2:28
  • @user26460 I just want to be informed so as not to make assumptions.
    – Willy
    Commented Jul 10, 2023 at 15:28

2 Answers 2

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Generally the answer is no, you cannot move money from one credit/debit card to another directly. These are not designed to be peer to peer payment methods, they work through centralized settlement networks.

There are ways to push funds into credit/debit cards through these networks. For example that's how you get merchant refunds or charge backs. But these still go through the processing network.

So if you're opening a store and you want your customers to pay with credit/debit cards - you'll need to have a merchant account to process these payments. You will not be able to avoid a payment gateway.

Separately, you may be able to set the merchant account so that all disbursements go to your debit card, if your processor supports that, but that would be independent of the purchase transactions made on your store by your customers, and they wouldn't be aware of that or care.

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Credit cards are just interfaces to revolving loans. Thus, no.

Debit cards are just interfaces to “checking” or savings accounts. While it would seem that a third party should be able to deposit into them, debit cards are modeled after, and work like, credit cards. Thus, also no.

This is why PayPal, Zelle, etc were developed. (If people could pay you using your credit/debit card, there would have been no need for PayPal, etc.)

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  • Here they say otherwise: quora.com/Can-I-receive-a-payment-with-a-Visa-debit-card
    – Willy
    Commented Jul 8, 2023 at 18:43
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    @Willy: and here's the actual source they cite: moneytransfers.com/sending-money/send-money-to-from-debit-card If you can figure out a way to make that work with your online store, good luck to you. Commented Jul 8, 2023 at 21:32
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    The debit part is incorrect. Money can be pushed via Visa/Mastercard Debit. Mastercard specifically calls out merchant settlement. Try it: go to PayPal, transfer money, instant transfer, transfer to, link a debit card. See also Square under Instant Transfers. The advantage is the funds transfer is effectively instant, unlike the potential 2-3 days of ACH. The disadvantage is it's pricey.
    – user71659
    Commented Jul 8, 2023 at 22:27
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    @user71659 you cannot make peer to peer transactions between two credit/debit cards, which is what the OP is asking about. You'll have to use an intermediary ("payment gateway" as the OP refers to it).
    – littleadv
    Commented Jul 8, 2023 at 23:51

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