Here at Banquest Payment Systems we often get calls from our merchants asking why a specific credit card transaction was declined.  They entered all the information correctly and it still came back as declined.  Why?


Most of the time the issue tends to be on the customer side rather than the merchant side.


The most common reasons for a credit card decline is because the cardholder reached their credit limit or failed to pay their bill. The issuing bank simply won’t let them borrow any more money until they’ve made a payment.  There are many types of limits; daily, monthly, per transaction, etc…


Another reason may be due to today’s advanced fraud detection tools.  If a purchase is being made outside of the customers usual geographic area, or if a transaction is significantly larger or out of habit for a particular shopper, the credit card issuer may decline the transaction due to fraud concerns.


All of the above declines are “Issuer Declines” for which as a merchant – there is not much you can do.  The cardholder would need to either make a payment (in the case of reaching credit limit) or contact their credit card issuer (in the case of a fraud alert).


However there are declines that can be due to the settings put in place by the specific merchants business.  Some merchants will set rules to decline orders with billing addresses or security codes that do not match the correct information on file.  Such declines are really not a credit card decline (the card may actually be approved and authorized for the amount requested) but rather it’s the merchant who is choosing not to capture and go through with the transaction.


We are always available to help our merchants determine the reason for a decline.  Feel free to reach out to or 855-323-8300.


Happy Tuesday & Happy Selling!



P.S. Former President Barack Obama’s credit card was declined when dining out in NYC!  Click HERE to hear him tell the story.

Card Declined

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You’re about to give your credit card to make a payment when the merchant says, “Credit card transactions are an extra 3%.”


This is called a credit card surcharge. Though it’s annoying, there’s a reason merchants add it: to cover their costs.  You’ll rarely see surcharges at large retailers. But you could see them at mom-and-pop establishments, where bottom lines are more sensitive to credit card processing fees.
Is it legal for the merchant to charge you an extra surcharge?

In most States, merchants aren’t barred by law from adding surcharges.  According to the Durbin Amendment of the Dodd–Frank Act, retailers are allowed to add a surcharge on credit card transactions. (They are not allowed to add surcharges on debit card or prepaid card transactions.)


Merchants are also allowed to require minimum purchases for credit card purchases — up to $10.


However, Surcharges are illegal across the board in these 9 states:







New York




Does it make sense for you to pay an extra 3% to use your credit card?

That really depends on why you wish to use your credit card in the first place.  If it’s simply for convenience, it might not make sense for you to pay an extra 3% for this convenience.  However if you need the 30 – 45 day cash float that your credit card afford you, then it might be the only way you can make the purchase.  Additionally, some savvy business owners may have a credit card that earns them 2% cash back and the cash back money is tax free (grey area…Speak to your Accountant.).  If you’re in a high tax bracket, it may be well worth it to pay 3% and get back 2% of that tax free.


Does it make sense for business owners to pass on the fee?

It really comes down to your customers. If you implement a surcharge, it comes at the risk of losing customers who are put off by additional charges for credit card.


When consumers were asked would they pay extra to use a credit card at a business, 64% said they wouldn’t pay an extra fee. Additionally, credit cards have become a standard method of payment in virtually every industry and every large corporation accepts credit cards without surcharging.


Finally, if your fees are too high, it might be time to look for a new processor. If you’re already a Banquest client, let us know how we can help you when it comes to surcharges. If you’re not a client but interested in how we can support your business, click here to contact us today!


It’s our mission to reduce the costs and headaches associated with credit card processing, so we’d be honored to earn your business.
Happy Tuesday & Happy Selling!

Credit Card Surcharging

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I debated with myself before writing this blog: is it really necessary?  Is there anyone out there that doesn’t already know this information?


Unfortunately we and our colleagues in the payment processing industry deal with this all the time.  My staff, who unfortunately has to clean up these messes, insist that many of the abusers are truly innocent.  They simply don’t know that what they are doing is wrong.


What I am referring to is the practice of charging or swiping ones own credit card to their own business – as a quick way to get funds into their bank account. (i.e. a business owner is short $20,000 for payroll, so he swipes his own credit card for $20,000 and has the funds in his account the next day! Sometimes there may even be legitimate reasons for doing so such as when someone owns multiple businesses and he is using his card from business A to pay business B.)


I’m not here to discuss whether or not this is a financially good idea in terms of the % rate… (It’s not!)


The credit card processors strictly prohibit such transactions and will terminate any account that processes such a transaction.  They’re pretty good about catching them too.  Sometimes the processor will place the merchant on a blacklist that is shared with all US processors ensuring that this business will never get approved for a merchant account anywhere.


In short:  never charge your own (or your family or business partners) credit card to your own merchant account.  


Happy Tuesday & Happy Selling!

Charging your own card?

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Every month without fail we get an invoice by mail from our waste disposal company who comes around weekly to empty the garbage dumpster outside our office.


As there is no URL on the invoice (where we can go to make an online payment), the process is painfully the same week after week.  Our AP department calls the waste disposal company, waits to get someone on the line, and then pays them by credit card over the phone.


Being part of the millennial generation there is nothing more convenient than being able to click, pay, and be done! (And nothing more annoying than having to speak to those humans!)  Whether it is paying a bill, making a purchase or donation, etc.


Customers will pay faster when they have an easy method of payment available at their fingertips. (Source: Common Sense)


At Banquest we listen to the needs of our clients and have spent the last 5 years developing a system where our clients can quickly get a customized link to easily accept payments online.


Here is how it goes:

Your link will be customized with your logo, colors, and specific fields (including recurring payment options!).


Safe, secure, and easy; our payment links are a great way to increase customer satisfaction and make it easier for them to pay, and for you to go green ;)!


Happy Tuesday & Happy Selling!

Paying Online

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