Why Cash Only?

24 August 2015

To our treasured customers:

We had some major complications with the processing of credit cards in July of 2015.

Due to a very disturbing computer glitch that occurred on July 21st, all the credit card transactions from the weekend of July 17th were processed 6 times. Shortly after, those credit card accounts were then refunded the amount of the original charge 5 times and the problem was corrected. While we deeply regretted the confusion this caused, we thought that this was the end of the situation. Unfortunately it was only the beginning.

When we were reconciling our bank account several days later we noticed that the credit card processing company had taken the highly irregular step of removing a large sum of money from our checking account. Soon after that, a less large sum had been put back into our account leaving a deficit of several thousand dollars.

It was a long 21 days of phone calls, being on hold for hours, being redirected from one department to another and from one financial institution to another. We were repeatedly promised explanations “by the end of the day” that never came. Three weeks later we finally understood that the large sum that was removed from our account was due to the fact that our Visa card customers were refunded the amount of their original charge 5 more times. The lesser sum that was put back into our account was the total from those customers being charged 4 more times.

Why this happened has not been made entirely clear to us but has been described as an “automatic duplication.” The result of this is that our Visa card customers were charged 10 times and refunded 10 times. So that means that over a month after the original charge was made, we were put in the awkward position of having to charge again, via the credit card processing company, for the original charges made between July 17 and July 21.

This has been a frustrating and demoralizing experience for us. Now that we see how little control we actually have over our mechanisms of payment and how unresponsive certain institutions have been to our desperate efforts to resolve this in a timely manner, we have decided to not use credit cards as a form of payment.

Thank you for taking the time to read this. Respectfully,
Your friends at Civilization and Terranova