Credit card policy

Credit card policy and FAQ

Credit card policy

Effective August 1, 2005, Concordia University implemented a new policy regarding the acceptance of credit card payments on a student's account. These are the primary changes that resulted from the new policy:

  1. Visa branded debit, credit, and check cards are no longer accepted for payments made on a student's account.
  2. MasterCard, Discover and American Express cards will be accepted.
  3. A convenience fee will be charged on all credit card payments. The fee will be in addition to the payment amount.
  4. The Student Financial Services office will no longer accept credit card payments in person, over the phone, or by mail. Students and parents visiting the Student Financial Services office will instead be directed to nearby computer stations at which payments can be made via the Web.

Why is Concordia University charging a convenience fee for the use of my credit card?

While credit card payments offer a convenient manner for students and parents to make payments on their student accounts, the cost to Concordia University for providing this convenience has grown to more than $40,000 annually. The Board of Regents has decided to require those who want the convenience of paying with a credit card to cover the merchant fees that are charged to Concordia University by the credit card companies.

Why doesn't Concordia University accept Visa branded credit cards?

Unlike MasterCard, Discover and American Express, Visa will not allow Concordia University to assess a convenience fee charge that varies with the transaction amount. Visa only allows for a flat fee to be charged regardless of the transaction amount. This (Visa's) method of charging a convenience fee would disadvantage many credit card payers. As an example, a variable convenience fee schedule would charge $5 on a $200 transaction and $50 on a $2,000 transaction. Visa's flat fee method would require the same $50 to be charged regardless of whether the transaction is $200 or $2,000.

Are other colleges and universities making similar changes?

Many colleges and universities throughout the United States have already made changes to their credit card policies due to the increasing impact on their budgets from the merchant fees that are charged by the credit card companies. Some have decided to discontinue accepting credit cards altogether. Concordia University decided to continue offering the option of credit card payments to students and parents but then pass on the costs to those who choose to use this option.

What should I do if all I have is a Visa Card?

In addition to accepting MasterCard, Discover and American Express credit cards (subject to a convenience fee) via the Web on the CUNE site, students and parents will be able to make online payments directly from any checking and savings account by using the new payment gateway to avoid the convenience fee charge. Concordia University will also continue to accept check payments by mail and at the Student Financial Services office.

May I use my Visa elsewhere on campus?

These changes only apply to payments made on a student's account. The Concordia Bookstore is not affected by this policy.

Why won't the Student Financial Services office accept my credit card over the counter or by phone?

For security reasons the Student Financial Services office cannot accept credit cards in person, over the phone, or by mail. We have contracted with Sallie Mae to provide payment options over the web. Sallie Mae uses state of the art technology to assure that each transaction is as secure as possible. Credit card numbers and other sensitive information will not be taken and stored by Concordia University.

I do not have access to a computer or don't want to send my credit card or banking information over the web. How do I pay?

Concordia University will continue to accept cash and check payments by mail.