How do I pass credit card fees onto my customer?

SystemSystem Posts: 405 admin

imageHow do I pass credit card fees onto my customer?

According to Visa, MasterCard and American Express merchant rules, merchants generally cannot charge a service fee when customers use their credit card. However, Visa, MasterCard, and American Expr...

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edited December 9, 2018 in Help Center Discussion


  • AlyssaAlyssa Member Posts: 1

    How do I know if I'm an eligible merchant? I'm a personal chef who charges weekly service fees to my clients. Thanks!

  • SamdSamd Administrator Posts: 557 admin

    Hey @Alyssa, great question! While the advice listed in this article will work for anyone, anywhere using Wave, whether or not you should will be dependent on local regulations. So, depending where you're located, I'd recommend just doing a quick google search to see if it is legal to pass on merchant fees onto your customer within your country. It'd also be worth searching to see if it is legal at a state or provincial level. If there are any restrictions, this should pull up any government websites detailing the rules.

  • AndrewFromWaveAndrewFromWave Administrator Posts: 10 admin

    Hi @robofred and @snowharvester thanks for adding to the discussion! The invoice total is determined by the items and values you enter in Wave, which won’t update automatically based on the method of payment the invoice recipient chooses.
    As mentioned above, merchants generally cannot charge a service fee when customers use their credit card. However, Visa, MasterCard, and American Express do allow eligible merchants to charge a service fee (also known as a convenience fee) for certain types of transactions.
    If your merchant agreement permits you to charge a service fee, the best approach currently is to communicate with your customer beforehand about their preferred payment method and include or exclude the fee in the invoice depending on their response.

  • CharlotteCharlotte Member Posts: 671 admin

    We appreciate the feedback, for sure. Thank you!

  • RhodyGrpxRhodyGrpx Member Posts: 1

    We need that option. It is up to the user to charge this or not depending on the state laws. In my state it is totally legal to do it. We just need to be able to add that option. Same as IVY software.. they do it and it works great!

  • jrollinsjrollins Member Posts: 4

    What does the ".971" represent?

  • SamdSamd Administrator Posts: 557 admin

    Hey @jrollins , that's just 1 with 2.9% subtracted, so 1 - .029, which gives us the .971. Dividing by this number should then give you the total, plus the merchant fee charge, which you can insert as your new total.

  • fischgeekfischgeek Member Posts: 1

    How can I only charge this convenience fee if the customer pays with a credit card? I wouldn't want to charge them this fee if they paid me in person.

  • JamieDJamieD Administrator Posts: 1,145 admin

    Hey @fischgeek. There currently isn't a way to charge the customer if they decide to pay with a credit card in that moment, all you can do is alter the invoice and then resend it to them so they can pay with the fee associated with the invoice itself. Alternatively, you can add the fee amount on the next invoice that you send to them and input the line item with that description.

  • vifrouvifrou Member Posts: 1

    Are there any plans to make this a dynamic option? Its a very poor customer experience for those that choose to pay by credit card. Instead of providing a convenience the suggested workaround actually creates a convoluted process for both the customer and vendor.

  • SiceburgSiceburg Member Posts: 1

    Hi Wave team, this is frustrating.
    I'm looking at your business model and wondering how you make money - it must be skimming a little off credit card processing right? Surely you want to make it as easy as possible for users to choose credit card payments as an option??
    Because there's no dynamic option (as discussed below), I've had to make the call to switch off credit card payments in my account.

    The whole reason I wanted to use Wave was to have an easy integration option with a credit card payment gateway.

  • BSA_TreasurerBSA_Treasurer Member Posts: 2

    This workaround is not very useful. We accountants already know how to calculate the fee; however, the real issue is that we cannot read the customer's mind on what type of payment they want to use. We are accountants not wizards after all. I am a treasurer of a small NPO which is supported by membership dues. Some members don't mind paying the extra fee for added convenience and some don't. My solution is not offering any credit card or ACH payment option. I think Wave's revenue will surely increase by allowing a way to pass the convenience fee to those who make payments. When it becomes available, please let me know I will be the first to opt in. And some of my members will also be very happy.

    Thank you,


  • WestfieldEstatesMIWestfieldEstatesMI Member Posts: 2

    I agree, there MUST be a way to pass on the fees to the customer, or in the least, if we add the amount to the invoice, they have the option to change the amount due/paid depending on the method of payment. FYI, Visa and Mastercard have recently done away with the fees rule and allows merchants to charge the fee to credit card users when a cash discount price is offered. Need to get with the times. We shut off credit card acceptance due to the unavailability of passing on the fees to the customer without forcing everyone to pay.

  • SamdSamd Administrator Posts: 557 admin

    Hey all, thank you for the feedback! To echo @AndrewFromWave:

    As mentioned above, merchants generally cannot charge a service fee when customers use their credit card. However, Visa, MasterCard, and American Express do allow eligible merchants to charge a service fee (also known as a convenience fee) for certain types of transactions.

    Currently, regulations from Visa, MasterCard, and Amex are prohibited in Canada, but you can get around this by charging a convenience fee on eligible transactions, which you can find out more about here.

    Certain US States also regulate and/or prohibit this as well.

    To remain compliant with these regulations, Wave doesn't offer the ability to automatically pass on these fees, which also remains in-line with most third-party payment processors. That being said we definitely can look into the feasibility of a way to opt into passing on fees where legal, but due to the complexity of regional regulations, and the fact that Wave operates in variety of locals, I cannot make any promises that such a feature would be implemented.

    That being said, there are areas/regions in which you could claim all, or a portion of, what you pay in merchant fees. I'd recommend checking in with your local tax authority, or even a tax accountant, because I definitely don't want to advise something that may not be compliant, but this may be another viable method of recouping some of the processing fees.

    edited April 4, 2019
  • YonasYonas Member Posts: 1


    We would turn on the Accept credit cards & bank payments IF we could have them added as a convenience fee automatically by wave.

    Otherwise, we will just continue to send them our interac etransfer email address. Which works almost equally well for us.

  • Ryan_WRyan_W Administrator Posts: 452 admin

    @Yonas thanks for the insight here! Hopefully the regulations change and allow us to build this in the future :smile:

  • EmiliannoEmilianno Member Posts: 1

    Il live in Australia, and passing on fees here is legal as long as the fee is limited to the amount actually paid by the seller, this feature would be really appreciated ! Until then I will have to deactivate credit card payment.

    edited April 26, 2019
  • Ryan_WRyan_W Administrator Posts: 452 admin

    @Emilianno that's fair! For what it's worth, there are some major improvements coming to the invoicing tool on tap for 2019, and adding the processing fee is one of the initial things we'll be addressing. I don't have an exact ETA, although it is something we're working on!

  • SiriaSiria Member Posts: 1

    Are there any plans to make this a dynamic option? Please!

  • CashmereCashmere Member Posts: 3

    How in the world are we suppose to know how each customer will decide to pay? Many times I have had customers say they would pay one way and then change their mind at the last moment. Convenience fee wasn't included and it costed me hundreds of dollars in charges... Fix this please.

  • ZoeCZoeC Administrator Posts: 388 admin

    Hey @Siria , @Veevee , thank you both for the input on this. As Ryan mentioned above there are some really exciting updates on the way for invoicing in the next year which hopefully will really benefit you and your customers! So stay tuned for that, and please keep the feedback coming. :smile:

  • CookSpringCookSpring Member Posts: 1

    Agree please find a way to fix this. Otherwise the software is great.

  • MargotMargot Member Posts: 7
    Is there a way of making an option on an invoice or quote with a subtotal and not having a transaction/convenience fee as a product/service. Some people a cautious with payments and business is costing me a fortune with merchant fees coming out of incoming funds.
  • AlexLAlexL Administrator Posts: 2,818 admin

    Hi @Margot ! Wave doesn't offer the ability to automatically pass on merchant fees. If you take a look at Sam's above post on April 4th, you'll get a better idea as to why this is.

  • intonovusintonovus Member Posts: 1

    We are a not for profit. I would like our non-charitable donors to be able to choose whether they would like to cover fees so more of their donation goes to the work we are doing. I don't see that as an option. Also, the option to place a note prior to committing to payment would also be helpful. In this case e.g. our statement is: ...Please note: we do not issue "official tax receipts". All financial contributions are gratefully acknowledged and donors are provided with email documentation, however, donations are currently not tax deductible as we are not a registered "charity". Thank you for your understanding and considering a donation to our important work supporting social enterprise.

  • BarsinBarsin Administrator Posts: 2,041 admin

    @intonovus Hey there,

    We appreciate and hear your concern. Our invoicing system is going through a major revamp and although not all of the requests people have submitted will be unveiled at first, know that this forum is a great place to post about these, as it is often looked at by our developers. Thanks!

  • DarkLightDarkLight Member Posts: 2

    Thanks everyone... I read through everything below... Can't Wave just please assess the "conveinience fee" when a credit card is used? Every invoice could include the disclaimer at the footer? And it can be an option Wave members can turn on or off. Seems pretty simple...

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