Česká spořitelna Ends Partnership with Mastercard and Switches to Visa

Česká spořitelna, the largest issuer of payment cards in the Czech Republic, is ending its partnership with the international card association Mastercard. The bank is rapidly replacing cards using this brand with competitive Visa cards.

According to Filip Hrubý, a spokesperson for Česká spořitelna, the use of cards from different card associations complicates the possibilities of technological implementations and loyalty programs or discount promotions for all bank clients. Thus, the bank has decided to continue using only one card association, Visa, to offer maximum flexibility and efficiently respond to technological innovations in the payment sector while providing benefits to all clients.

The change will affect more than 360,000 clients of the bank and over half a million payment cards. Mastercard has a 15% share of the number of cards issued by Česká spořitelna, while the bank has around 3.4 million cards.

Clients who use a Mastercard Standard card and MC Credit Card can use them until the end of August this year. The bank plans to send the new Visa card to them by the end of July. However, replacing other Mastercard cards may be slower. The bank plans to deliver a new Visa card to all clients who use its Mastercard card by the end of the year.

While the bank assures that the change will not affect the limit settings for payments and withdrawals from an ATM, the PIN and the card type will remain the same as the current ones. All insurance related to the current card will continue to run as before, and clients can also view the previous payment history in electronic banking. However, the card number, expiration date, and security code (CVC for Mastercard and CVV for Visa) will change.

Clients should remember to update their card details where they store the card, typically for prepaid services such as Netflix, Spotify, and others, to avoid any inconvenience caused by the change.

Česká spořitelna’s decision to unify its card offering under a single association is an attempt to increase operational efficiency, loyalty program, and promotional opportunities while maintaining high-quality payment services. The bank has chosen to partner with Visa, an association with a well-established presence worldwide, which should help ease the transition process for clients. The bank’s reassurance that the change will not impact clients’ benefits with their current cards may help mitigate any concerns clients may have.