26th February 2013
Today, Foursquare is expanding Specials to the rest of the world through partnerships with Visa and MasterCard for both credit and debit cards. This means that Visa and MasterCard can approach Foursquare to reward cardholders for checking in to places like Burger King. Merchants, on the other hand, get enhanced analytics from Foursquare about the kinds of people spending money at their location. “Every person in the US has an American Express, Visa, or MasterCard credit or debit card, and the offers now work for all of them,” Product Manager Noah Weiss says.
I wish someone would tell this to the stupid women who stand in the grocery checkout lane taking half an hour to write a check. Sheesh.
Once you’ve initially added a credit card to your Foursquare account, discounts activate automatically any time you check in to an eligible location, like a restaurant or bar.
My bank has a similar program that gives me rebates (miniscule, but better than nothing) when I shop with local merchants and use their debit card. Once I ‘load’ the discount on the card (which takes about a second), I get the rebate whenever I use the card at that merchant. Since I use the card to pay for damned near everything, it’s totally painless for me. At the end of the month, they total up the rebate and credit my account. Granted, the rebates are miniscule, but they’re nevertheless greater than any interest I could earn on my checking or savings account in the Ben Bernanke Era, so I am content.