Ballroom and the economy

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by pygmalion, Apr 20, 2005.

  1. Milen

    Milen Member

    Am I the only one who thinks they wouldn't want to accept credit cards and other methods of payments for tax purposes? Can't really blame them though. I once tried doing the math and I was wondering if they're left with any money to buy food if they do everything by the book (at least in NYC with expensive parking, gas, high taxes etc).
  2. JANATHOME

    JANATHOME Well-Known Member

    Yes, I too did misunderstand your point...
    Thank for your input
  3. tanya_the_dancer

    tanya_the_dancer Well-Known Member

    Those small percentages add up. I was seriously annoyed when e-bay changed its policy and forced all sellers to accept Paypal backed by cc (thereby forcing small-time sellers like myself to upgrade their Paypal accounts and pay a fee whenever we receive any kind of money. It really ate into my sales to the point that it's not worth the trouble to list things on e-bay). If I were a self-employed professional (not necessarily teaching dance, maybe offering other services), I would have to really weigh costs vs. benefits of accepting cc.

    Also, I can't imagine anyone who's serious about their dancing making the pro's stance on whether they accept cc or not a deciding factor.
  4. Larinda McRaven

    Larinda McRaven Site Moderator Staff Member

    For an independent who takes credit cards... the fees are a huge dent in the income.

    I try very hard to discourage CC purchases from students... but if they insist then I will take them. And I am not avoiding cc because of tax purposes, because my bank will not let me cash checks anyway. They MAKE me deposit them and then take a withdrawal, so the money is visible as income regardless. I can't very well hide it. I simply hate the large merchant fees I am charges because I am a small business.
  5. ChaChaMama

    ChaChaMama Well-Known Member

    Totally understandable which is why I would never make a fuss about this.
    If it were an option, I would use my AmEx because their reward program really works for me. It's not, so I pay with a check or cash. No biggie.
    TinyDancer109 likes this.
  6. jump'n'jive

    jump'n'jive Active Member

    Well you could just go and cash the check where it's drawn off of, then it's "hidden" un taxed income.

    People don't understand how shady and how much money merchant processing places are and just how it costs the business owner. People think its so great with their rewards and how much they can get back but that's at the cost of the business. Some of those rewards cards cost me almost 7% to swipe.
  7. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    I have never even inquired about credit cards with either pro///past or present...I just get nervous about large purchases on credit....regardless of my capacity to pay...I have never bought a gown that way either
  8. jump'n'jive

    jump'n'jive Active Member

    Was fasc on behalf of all pro's and costume people let be speak for all and say thank you LOL
  9. Larinda McRaven

    Larinda McRaven Site Moderator Staff Member

    I would waste so much gas driving around trying to cash 35 checks a week in different banks and credit unions all over Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Maine, and Connecticut.... not to mention the students that still have checking accounts in their home states elsewhere in the country. Seriously... that's not an option.
  10. jump'n'jive

    jump'n'jive Active Member

    I guess my sarcasm didnt come off very well Larinda :/
  11. ChaChaMama

    ChaChaMama Well-Known Member

    Interesting. How do you feel about a large hotel bill on a credit card? While I don't think an independent teacher has any need/obligation to offer credit card payment as an option (unlike, say, Hilton or Marriott, where I would be pretty confused if they insisted on cash or check), I would certainly have no qualms about paying for my lesson that way.

    ******
    Side note/thought: The college at which I work now has its own debit card system, the [Name of school]OneCard. Many other colleges and universities have this as well.

    How it works at my school (to the best of my understanding): You get $50 on it at the beginning of the semester automatically, and they encourage you or your parents to load more money onto it. It's supposed to be a win-win-win:
    -The students get discounts at some local merchants,
    -The local merchants get free advertising to the students,
    -The school gets a percentage on their purchases, rather than Visa, Mastercard, AmEx, or Discover.

    The question I'm mulling, business-minded person that I am: I wonder if USA Dance or the NDCA should be doing something similar? Pre-load money onto a card, then somehow use the card to pay for entries, and the NDCA gets a percentage?

    Maybe no one would be interested in such a card. At colleges, we have a captive market, as this sucker is now your ID card which you use for your meal plan in the dining hall, to take out books at the library, to gain entrance to the campus gym, etc. But if the benefit off the card to the NDCA or comp organizers were enough, they could offer a small discount on entry fees....

    I don't know. This is probably the nonsensical raving of a sleep-deprived professor on the last day of classes, after a solid week of grading research essays. Feel free to ignore.
  12. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    no...you are probably totally onto something good...and I can see how, since I do pay for my hotels stays on credit (if I have not already paid for a package via a check to the organizer) it may seem like an odd disparity...I guess it's because, for me, it doesn't feel inconvenient to pay for my lessons or a dress via a check, while that doesn't seem like a convenient option, if it is even possible at all, at a hotel...as for debit; I have never really gotten into the habit of debit yet...I ought to, I just forget to...I would never base any market decisions on what I do...
  13. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    you are welcome...I think it is also a huge source of relief for dh...I will say that I do buy my gas and hotel stays on credit and I do love my points
  14. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    I had 150,000 choice hotel points this year and about 400 dollars earned via discover purchases as well, and that was very helpful this holiday season
  15. danceronice

    danceronice Well-Known Member

    I do almost everything on my credit card. I don't like carrying cash or writing checks unless it's necessary. And for the kind of business *I* do, the ability to take plastic outweighs the merchant fees (also, because I'm a seasonal/sporadic business, I can suspend the account month by month and pay only $7 and not the minimums.) But I'm doing goods-for-purchase and impulse items to boot, so it's in my best interest to make it very easy for people to spend money.

    With hotels and travel, I use the cards just to get the extra percentage back (I get it in the form of either Amazon credit, which I just used for Christmas presents, or as money to spend at Costco--I'm JUST running out of the paper towels I got from two years ago. Even with the plumbing crisis last January. That's huge for buying nonperishables and paper goods.)
  16. Larinda McRaven

    Larinda McRaven Site Moderator Staff Member

    :blush: sorry...
  17. Larinda McRaven

    Larinda McRaven Site Moderator Staff Member

    Just a small correction... NDCA does not have anything to do with what you pay an organizer for a competition.

    Interesting thought though.
  18. ChaChaMama

    ChaChaMama Well-Known Member

    No, I get that and am including that thought in my reasoning. A lot of the people our students are paying with their OneCard aren't our college either. For example, you can use the OneCard at Coldstone Creamery in our town. It has no affiliation whatsoever with the college and it is NOT on campus. And that is just one of many examples. We are just providing a market of potential consumers to these merchants.

    It seems to work like any other debit card. You have to have money on the card backing it up, of course...but this way, you don't have to carry cash. It also can be used for the washer/dryer and the vending machines. (I think you are just a little younger than I am, so I'm assuming you too went to college during the scrounge for quarters era.)

    I take it the little percentage that the college gets from the debit card is enough to be worth our while...because we offer some incentives to use the card for more than just your meal plan. And I've checked it out, and almost every college/university in my region has such a card. Basically, the thinking seems to be "Instead of Mastercard, Visa, AmEx, Discover, or bank-sponsored debit cards making that 2-3%, how about us?" The thinking also seems to be "Let's say we have to offer students an incentive to use this card rather than another one. If we offer them discounts over using cash here and there that add up to 1%...we still come out ahead!"

    The thing that confuses me: it seems like a lot of schools allow you to put $$$ on your OneCard using a credit card. But then...doesn't the school have to pay the credit card company a merchant fee? I'm not exactly sure why this still makes economic sense...but somehow, colleges and universities seem to think it does!
  19. JANATHOME

    JANATHOME Well-Known Member

    Ahh, the OneCard loophole!

    If one wanted to, you can go on-line and get a free onecard then go to Walmart and replenish it using a points CC. Walmart just sees it as a purchase, not a cash advance. Now you have a debit card. You have just turned your CC into cash and now you can pay your mortgage or car payments with it and in a round about way have earned points.. I have researched this, but have not yet gone to that extreme!!

    But back to my situation. After paying by check for years I noticed the studio was accepted credit cards, not something I asked them to do for just me... So I looked around for the best points CC I could find, got it, and then took advantage of it. I figured why not earn points for the cost of my dance lessons. With pro going independent I realize this is not an option, so I am back to check payments and noted that this was a lost benefit for me, that is all.

    I am still considering paying by Paypal transfer. The cost of the transfer by credit card is mine, not pro and the money will be in pros checking account in a day. When I calculated it out it would increase my lesson cost by $2.00 so I am still considering asking pro if he has a paypal account and if this would be an acceptable way to pay for lessons.
  20. jump'n'jive

    jump'n'jive Active Member

    unless you send it as a gift( i have to double check on that dont quote me) pay pal charges 3 percent on your pro's end. he would be better off with square at 2.75% and he would have the funds the next business day. they have android and iphone apps so he just needs his phone and the card reader is free. on an 80 dollar lesson it would cost him $2.20 cents or he would swiped 82.20 to cover the loss.

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