What are the differences between an ‘issuer’ and ‘network’?
- Issuer: The heart of the credit card business. Responsible for making profit as well as setting the terms that the credit card company can offer to their customers. They would also need to ensure that they minimise uncollectible debt, and provide customer service.
- Network: The bridge between two parties – the merchants who accept your card and the banks that circulate those very cards. It also functions as a controller for where credit cards can be accepted, as well as a facilitator for transactions between the two parties.
Issuers and networks help each other in one important and mutually beneficial way: Every time you swipe your card for something, the merchant will be charged a processing fee that will then be divided between the issuer and the network. We now come to the good part…
Emergency cash, and so many more rewards!
Issuers have plenty of benefits to offer cardholders, but a network also has its own set of ancillary benefits available:
1) Card emergency service
Card malfunctioned or lost? With UnionPay’s Emergency Card Replacement service, call the hotline number or domestic issuing bank, and you’d get the replacement card delivered to you by express mail. Another unique feature is the Emergency Cash Service that provides funds assistance (capped at USD5,000), subject to authorisation by the issuing bank.
2) Shopping benefits
A card network like UnionPay is not only in partnership with more than 1,800 institutions worldwide, it has enabled card acceptance in 170 countries and regions. They also have more than 1,000 offers for you to choose from, covering spas, dining, travelling and shopping to name a few. Pampering yourself has never been so effortless!
3) Global assistance service
According to UnionPay’s terms, if you’re the proud holder of a premium UnionPay credit card, you can be assured of a full range of exclusive privileges, anywhere in the world. Some of these include overseas travel assistance, medical assistance, VIP medical and healthcare service, high-end travel insurance as well as 24-hour concierge service!
4) Global travel service
Whatever airline class you’re considering, as a UnionPay cardholder, you’ll be able to enjoy world-class services at a number of VIP lounges at global airports. Recreational facilities will be made available like high-speed internet access, mobile phone and laptop charging ports, international newspapers and magazines as well as free desserts and snacks.
The network is just as important!
At the end of the day, it’s important to know both the issuer and the network of your card. Always do your own research to find out what rewards from BOTH parties would be most beneficial to your lifestyle, and this handy comparison tool may be just the right push you need to help you on your search!