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Nets explains payments

Which cards should you choose to accept and why?

Card payment in flower shop
Published: 30.01.2024
N/A minutes read

It can be a jungle to understand the difference between all the card schemes, when you need to choose which cards to accept when opening a store or starting a webshop. But one thing is certain, you need to be able to accept card payments.

According to Nordic Payment Report almost 90% of the Nordic consumers prefer to pay with card in physical stores. So, it’s a no brainer to choose to accept cards, the question to consider is which cards to choose.

For you to understand the difference between the card schemes we’ll provide you with the story behind the most common card types and which customers you can expect will prefer to pay using which card. This information might come in handy, when you need to choose, which cards to accept.


Dankort is a national Danish card scheme launched in Denmark in 1983. In Denmark only there’s issued 5,5 million Dankort, most of them combined with Visa as a Visa/Dankort and some combined with Mastercard, which makes it possible for the Danish consumers to use the card outside of Denmark while travelling.

Your Danish customers will expect to be able to pay with Dankort at your store, since Dankort is the Danes’ preferred payment method.

Nets is the only acquirer of Dankort, so if you want to be able to accept Dankort payments, you need an Dankort agreements from Nets.


Visa was founded back in 1958 in the US, when Bank of America launched BankAmericard, the first card ever with a “revolving credit” feature. The card changed its name in 1976 to Visa, as we know it today, when it expanded internationally.

Today Visa operates in more than 200 countries and territories and as many as 4.1 billion Visa cards are issued worldwide.

The Visa card comes in a variety of different versions, both as credit and debit cards and co-branded with other cards such as Dankort and UnionPay.


Mastercard is a global technology company in the payments industry and was founded in 1966.

Today, Mastercard operates across 210 countries and territories, and 3.0 billion Mastercard and Maestro-branded cards are being issued across the globe. Over 90+ million locations accepts Mastercard and 112 billion Mastercard transactions were switched in 2021.

The company works to connect and power an inclusive digital economy that benefits everyone, everywhere by making transactions safe, simple, smart, and accessible.

Diners Club International

Diners Club began its proud history in 1950, all because a man named Frank McNamara had dinner in a New York restaurant but left his cash in another suit. Unable to pay the bill without his wife coming to bail him out, he resolved never to be embarrassed again and founded Diners Club. Today Diners Club International is issued in over 55 countries.

Today, Diners Club is a globally recognised brand serving the payment needs of select and affluent consumers, offering access to more than 1,000 airport lounges worldwide, and providing corporations and small business owners with a complete array of expense management solutions. Diners Club can be used in more than 200 countries and territories, millions of stores, and access to more than 1.3 million ATMs.


UnionPay is a Chinese card scheme established in China in 2002. UnionPay International is a subsidiary of China UnionPay with their focus outside of China and was established in 2012 for the card scheme to expand outside of China. UnionPay International can be used in 181 countries worldwide and to date it is issued in 77 countries and regions with a total of 190 million cards outside mainland China.

The card can be found both as a single-branded UnionPay standard card and as a co-branded card with e.g., Visa and Mastercard.


JCB is a major global payment brand and a leading credit card issuer and acquirer in Japan. JCB launched its card business in Japan in 1961 and began expanding worldwide in 1981.

JCB’s acceptance network includes 39 million merchants and over a million cash advance locations across the world. JCB cards are now issued in many countries and territories, with more than 146 million cardmembers, including Japan, Taiwan, Korea, Thailand, India, and Vietnam. As part of its international growth strategy, JCB has formed a strong alliance with Nets to accept JCB Card for all Nets merchants in all the Nordic countries.

For consumers, JCB cards vary from a standard product, through to premium products including gold and silver. The line-up includes Affinity and Corporate cards too. All noticeable with the tricolour JCB logo. All card products are accepted on the Nets network.


The Discover Card is a credit card brand issued since 1985 in the United States only. The flagship Discover Card pioneered America’s first cashback bonus programme on purchases. The Cashback Bonus is a percentage of the amount spent being refunded back into the cardholder’s credit card account depending on how much the card was used.

There are different types of Discover cards fit for different purposes e.g., everyday purchases and travel. Besides that, Discover cards can be found as co-branded with a wide range of national card schemes like BC Card from South Korea, RuPay from India, Elo from Brazil, Troy from Turkey and Verve from Nigeria.

How to get an acquiring agreement?

Now that you’re probably convinced that you need to let your customers pay with cards and know which cards are relevant for your store or webshop, next step is to get an acquiring agreement. Nets offers acquiring agreements of all the above-mentioned card schemes. Read more on acquiring agreements and let us help you get started.

Louise Fibiger Ravnkilde
Louise Fibiger Ravnkilde
Senior Digital Content & Communications Manager, Nets A/S