Giorgio Zanol, owner *File photo
Giorgio Zanol, owner *File photo

Lindo’s are now giving discounts on Wednesdays to customers who use credit and debit cards. 

Giorgio Zanol, owner, told the Bermuda Sun the discounts start today and will run  every Wednesday through November 30, 2014. Credit card and debit card users will get eight per cent off their bills at the checkout stand at Lindo’s.

Mr Zanol said the chain decided to make the move as it will no longer accept cheques, starting January 2, because that’s when a fee increase from the banks to deposit cheques goes into effect.

He said: “We’re doing away with cheques. Currently, with cheques and cash, we give you 10 per cent off (on Wednesdays). We’re giving eight per cent on the cards because we have to pay the bank a fee to accept the credit card and the debit cards.”

Mr Zanol said some customers write cheques for $10 to $30 and with a 10 per cent discount on Wednesdays and the HSBC fee, Lindo’s could potentially lose money on the transaction.

“At the end of the month it is a lot of money to give to the bank to deposit the cheques. If the cheque is for $500, it’s not too bad, but if it’s for $15 or $20 worth of groceries with the 10 per cent off and the fee to the bank, then what do I stay in business for? I might as well close down and go on vacation.

“The banks have to run their business, but we can’t assimilate this charge.”

He added the ATM outside of Lindo’s is an HSBC one.

“People who have an account with the Bank of Butterfield can’t get the money out without paying a fee, so they have to go to town or elsewhere to get cash. Some people don’t want to travel too far with cash so we just did this as a service to the customers.”

Mr Zanol added at the Devonshire store he originally wanted ATM machines from both HSBC and Butterfield, but he understands that the banks have an unofficial agreement that if one has an ATM at an establishment, then the other will not. He said there are some exceptions like at the hospital and the airport. “I was going to do it, but they said ‘We have a tacit agreement’.”