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    Acceptance Mark Uses

    Accurate, consistent use of the Acceptance Marks heightens brand visibility, stimulates card use, and enhances the brand's business-building power.

    This page is an overview regarding Acceptance Mark uses. For detailed information, click here to view the entire standards.

    All locations that accept MasterCard®, Maestro®, or Cirrus® always must display the appropriate Acceptance Marks prominently, in the approved sequence. A point-of-interaction (POI) location is the location at which the transaction occurs, whether a physical location, a Web site, a mail order form, or another place where a customer provides payment information. All POI locations that accept cards with these brands must:

    • Prominently display the Acceptance Mark, so that it is clearly visible to the public; and
    • Display the Acceptance Mark at parity with all other acceptance marks/symbols/logos also displayed (with the exception of MasterCard POI locations in the U.S., where a specific regional Standard that permits otherwise exists. Refer to MasterCard Rules, Rule 5.9.1 "Discrimination" of Chapter 15, "U.S. Region Rules").

    This requirement means that in any media, including print, electronic advertising, promotional literature, signs, decals, and any other graphic image used to indicate acceptance, no other acceptance mark, symbol, or logo may be larger, of a greater size or dimension, appear more frequently, or in any way appear more important or welcomed than the MasterCard and/or Maestro Acceptance Mark.

    1. Use at Physical Merchant Locations

      At physical merchant locations, prominent signage at the entrance (such as on an exterior door or window) is preferred. This type of display serves as an invitation to cardholders and a proven advertsiing tool for merchants. An interior display (such as at the check-out station, cash register(s), or till(s) is also acceptable.

      Acceptance Mark Quick Reference Guide for Merchants

      View Full Acceptance Mark Standards

    2. Use on Internet Merchant Locations

      At internet merchant locations, cardholders must be able to determine immediately that the particular brand is accepted. The most effective way to ensure this is to display the appropriate Acceptance Marks on the merchant's home page. At the very least, the appropriate Acceptance Marks always must be displayed where payment options are presented.

      View Acceptance Mark Standards

    3. Use at ATMs and Other Devices

      At ATMs, Acceptance Marks must appear on or near the main entrance, on or near the cash machine, and must not appear only on the ATM screen. The MasterCard, Maestro, and Cirrus brands must be displayed on an ATM.

      Acceptance Marks also must be displayed on or near other unattended terminals installed or serviced by members. These include displays on or near compatible ATMs, telephones, or other card-accepting devices that function without an attendant.

      For attended terminals, acceptance branding is recommended, and required if other payment brands are displayed.

      View Acceptance Mark Standards

    4. Merchant Advertising

      Acceptance Marks can be used on merchant advertising to signify acceptance of MasterCard's family of payment brands.

      View Acceptance Mark Standards

    5. Using Our Marks Together

      When using our marks together, display the marks vertically or horizontally, in the approved sequence only: MasterCard, Maestro, Cirrus. Always display only those brands that are accepted at the particular location. Acceptance Marks always must be presented at size and color parity with all other brand marks displayed.

      View Acceptance Mark Standards

    6. Using Our Brand Names

      When using our brand names in communications that promote our brands, the brand name(s) always must be used at least once. The brand names must not appear in all uppercase or all lowercase letters and always must appear in English. In general, the MasterCard, Maestro, and Cirrus brand names should be used as adjectives, as in "Your MasterCard card."

      At a minimum, the brand names must be used as adjectives in their first or most prominent mention subsequent to any use in the title, headline, signature, or cover page of a communication, and include the ® and/or ™ trademark symbols as designated for each.

      View Acceptance Mark Standards

    7. Using with Other Marks

      To achieve parity with all other brand marks displayed, the Acceptance Mark must be at least as prominent and appear in at least the same frequency, size, and color treatment as the largest other acceptance mark displayed.

      View Acceptance Mark Standards

    8. Avoiding Common Mistakes

      Consistent reproduction of the Acceptance Marks is vital for recognition and card use. Common mistakes can compromise the integrity of our Acceptance Marks and reduce their impact among consumers.

      View Acceptance Mark Standards

    View the Complete Standards

    The following PDF standards contain detailed information including but not limited to:

    • Elements of the mark
    • Color specifications
    • Minimum size requirements
    • Common mistakes

    View Acceptance Mark Standards

    View Acceptance Mark Standards

    Use at Physical Merchant Locations Use on Internet Merchant Locations ATMs and other devices Merchant Advertising Using Our Marks Together Using Our Brand Names Using with Other Marks