Using debit card to purchase gas? Think again

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PHOENIX - Kendal Richardson was running errands recently when she noticed her gas tank was empty and needed to fill up.

“I got $13 worth of gas and then I ran into sprouts and got groceries.” Kendal used her debit card to buy gas but when she later checked her bank account, instead of seeing a $13 gas charge, her account actually had a "hold" for $100.

Unfortunately, the hold sent Kendal's account into the negative and she racked up all kinds of overdraft fees because of it.

“When I was working with the bank I explained what had happened and they told me this is something common that's happening now that Chevron's putting this preauthorization on the gas.”

Chevron isn't the only gas station that may preauthorize your account for a higher amount than your purchase.

Many gas stations hold a higher amount. The reason?  They want to make sure enough funds are available until your purchase goes through, which is usually a day. Then the hold is released.

"It was just so aggravating to know that they keep your money until the next processing day."

3 On Your Side looked into the matter and found out that "preauthorization’s," or holds for higher amounts are a common practice but who's behind these preauthorization’s? 

The banks blame the gas stations, the gas stations blame the banks, and the credit card companies blame everyone but themselves.  That's not good news for consumers like Kendal who think the practice is just wrong.
 
“To me this was something that was so out of the blue and I really do believe it's something they should have as an option when you enter your information for the card so your aware of it before you pump gas."