Visa returns, card users rejoice

Tired of using a MasterCard, American Express or Discover card to pay your online fees or just don’t have them? Good news, the Visa card is back and now accepted by Western Carolina University!

Stated by Nancy Brendell, bursar for WCU, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York preliminarily approved a settlement agreement in the case involving Visa, posted on the Visa website about the ruling in Nov. 2012. Visa is now required to implement certain Visa International Operating Regulations rule changes.

This means that Visa changed its regulations so that schools that take Visa can charge a fixed rate convenience fee. In the past, Visa would not allow institutions to charge a flat rate percentage fee.

“Visa isn’t just returning to Western Carolina University,” Brendell stated. “We use Touchnet, a software program that takes our payments. A lot of the other schools use this software to process payments, so any of those schools can take Visa.”

Also according to Brendell, if a student wants to pay with a Visa card, they need to keep in mind there is a convenience fee for using the card. The convenience fee will be set at 2.75 percent.

There were other options though if a student did not want to use Visa, which many had to use since Visa was not an option before. Students could pay with MasterCard, Discover and American Express cards, which all have a 2.75 percent convenience fee. To escape the convenience fee, a student can also pay with a web check, Brendell stated.

Visa’s return brought mixed feelings to the students of WCU with some students claiming to not feel an effect of the card’s return. Some though, are looking forward to the fact that it has.

 Freshman WCU student Kira Brothers did not have to worry about using a card this year because of financial aid, but she uses Visa, so if a fee does come up that she has to pay, this will help.

“It’s easier to pay because it’s what my debit card is,” said Brothers. “So if it comes to where I have to pay, then it will be convenient.”

To know more or you have any questions about Visa as another payment option, contact Nancy Brendell. She can be reached at 828-227-3102 or by email at