Retailers are divided over plans to ban charging customers extra when they pay with credit or debit card.

From next January, a directive from the European Union will ban businesses from adding surcharges on Visa and Mastercard payments.

However, the UK Government has put further measures in place by banning charges on American Express and Paypal as well.

Retailers on the PayPoint Pay Fair Facebook group expressed fears that the measure will cut into their profits.

Leon Hill, of Spar in Stithians, Cornwall, said: “It seems all PayPoint agents currently profiting out of card charges, or offsetting their card processing charges by charging for paying PayPoint by card, won’t be able to anymore.

“We could be forced back into minimum spends on card.”

But retailers have told Retail Express that the measure is an opportunity to negotiate better terms from their banks.

Gaurave Sood, owner of Neelam Convenience Store and Post Office in Uxbridge, London, said if retailers keep charging customers surcharges they will shop elsewhere.

“Absorbing the cost is a small price to pay to keep customers loyal to you,” he said.

Anish Parekh of Londis Broadoak & Post Office, Ashton-under-Lyne, Greater Manchester, said: “There’s definitely negativity attached to charging card payments. I understand the feeling of unfairness by customers, which is why I’ve never charged.”