Gas pump requiring ZIP code
Road trip planned. GPS programmed. Playlist made. One of Canadian’s favourite things to do in the summer is road trip to the U.S., be it for shopping or a weekend getaway.

The last thing you want to worry about after crossing the border is how you will refuel your vehicle.

In the past, Canadians faced challenges at many U.S. pay-at-the-pump locations due to the Address Verification Service, a security feature requiring a ZIP code match between the credit card and the billing address of the card.

Now, Canadians able to use their MasterCard cards at many pay-at-the-pump locations across the border – great news for travelers who are planning on hitting the road this summer. When prompted for a 5-digit ZIP code at pumps in the U.S., Canadians can simply enter the three numbers from their postal code in Canada and add two zeros at the end.

For example: if the postal code is M1A 2B3 the 5-digit number you enter is: 12300 (numbers 1, 2 and 3 from the Canadian postal code plus 00 at the end).

But MasterCard cautions there is no guarantee this will work at every gas station. It will only be effective at spots where the pump works in a prepay scenario that requires a zip code to authorize the transaction.

“This tip does not apply to gas stations without the zip code prompt, so consumers should be prepared to pay inside the station if necessary. Since this tip can’t be used at 100 per cent of gas stations in the U.S., consumers should consider this an option to try rather than a guaranteed solution,” a MasterCard representative said.

“Just as you plan to pack your passport, check the weather and plan your travel budget, keep this tip in mind for when you’re driving south of the border.”

The announcement that Canadians will now be able to use these pumps was met with excitement online.

The MasterCard representative said all response their way has been positive.

“Canadians love to travel and this will help them get back on the road faster,” they said.