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Accepting card payments

An acquirer will credit a merchant account for all the card transactions that they have accepted, and on a monthly basis the acquirer will debit the merchant account for service charges and other fees you may be changed as part of the agreement with the acquirer.

The time it takes for a card payment to reach a merchant’s bank account will vary depending on the type of transaction and these are ranked below showing the fastest first:

  • Card present transaction – up to four working days
  • Card-not-present transaction (mail order or telephone order) – can be more than four working days
  • Card-not-present transaction (internet) – can be 30 working days or more

A merchant can check that its bank account has been credited with the correct amount of funds by printing a daily summary of what card business has been transacted. This can be done by performing the end-of-day procedure through their terminal and then checking this figure with the entry in the bank account. Where these do not match, an acquirer will be able to assist in the understanding of any inconsistencies.

An acquirer will discuss with you, the merchant, which card types they may want to accept for your business. In addition, an acquirer may provide you details on how a merchant can recognise card types, for card present transactions, and their security features (examples of these are holograms or card markings that appear when viewed under an ultraviolet light).

There may be instances where a merchant cannot process a transaction, for example, if a terminal fails. An acquirer will provide instructions on what to do if this happens.

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