Signing up for a paid subscription service is very easy. Most of them offer a free trial to get you hooked in hopes of enticing you to spend your monthly on yet another recurring subscription. In most cases, the merchants will retain your card information when signing up for the free trial and charge the card automatically at the end of the free trial whether you want to continue using the service or not. Mastercard will no longer let merchants do that.
Mastercard has changed the rules a bit and merchants will now have to gain cardholder approval when a free trial ends. They will be required to send the customer either by text or email the payment date, transaction amount, merchant name, and explicit instructions on how to cancel the trial.
It doesn’t end there. For each recurring payment thereafter, the merchant will also have to send the customer a receipt for each transaction over email or text along with clear instructions on how to cancel the service if they want. All charges that appear in a customer’s statement will also include the merchant website URL or the phone number of the store where the purchase is made.
As someone who has experienced being billed automatically for a service I had no wish to use any further, this is a welcome rule change.