If the website is down, its the API I care about. I've been using my maestro all december and its been flawless, as ever.
The MasterCard website struggled to cope with Christmas shopping demand that left it unreachable for nearly five hours in the run-up to Christmas. More seriously MasterCard's Maestro system also experienced glitches in the immediate run-up to Xmas. The extent of the problem with the debit card system remains unclear. According …
I was only using Maestro over christmas since I don't like buying on credit - and all my cards are full anyway... so I experienced plenty of problems. A particularly long wait for my payment to be processed got me some free chocolate in a well-known chocolatier's shop, though the most common problem was having my card rejected and having to try again. It usually worked the second time.
I used to work for MasterCard, and I still work in close proximity to some of their employees. Despite the stellar performance of their stock, they have been laying off all their talent in wholesale in an effort to pad their stock prices. Morale and availability are just the beginning of bad things to come from this once good company to work for. I'm just glad I left before the bottom began to fall out.
Big queue outside my bank one day last week, at the ATM. Then found an even bigger one inside. Turned out it was exactly as described above, "the switch card system is down" the tellers were telling people. That's the Clydesdale Bank, cousin to the Yorkshire Bank. The mastercard system was also down. The bank could not help anybody, just apologising and telling people to wait until the system came back up again.
It seems one system came back on separately from the other, but I think it was coming & going for a while.
Their website was down and there was some annecdotal evidence of problems with the payment system. These two systems are going to be a long way apart in their network topology so it's unlikely that the two are caused by the same problems. Payment systems drop out over the christmas periods for a lot of reasons and there is nothing to suggest that the outages were caused by anything at the card processor end as that would more likely bring about a total outage. The issues with some retailers are more likely to be because the card machine cannot get a connection to the processor due to the busy nature of the season.
In the words of Slashdotters everywhere... nothing to see here.
The two probably are related, but not in the network sense - the website probably went down because of the surge of traffic hitting it trying to find out why their cards were being declined!
Like a few other people here, I did experience a problem paying with my switch card, but it went through the second time, and didn't glitch at all on the many other purchases I made that day, so it sounds like it's just a busy system...kind of to be expected really.
Don't forget, people - this is Maestro's first Christmas since assimilating Switch, it's quite possible they just had more traffic than they expected.
Survived in Spain all of Christmas week on Maestro alone. No problems at all to speak of.
This is in marked contrast with my November trip to Canada when they cut me off with no warning in a Fraud alert. (Apparently they've been suffering high levels of fraud in Canada recently.) They did send a text to my mobile with the phone number I should call ... but my mobile doesn't work on the Canadian neworks. I nearly had to wash dishes for a few weeks to pay my hotel bill!
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