Switching Merchant Accounts -MyPMS
Posted by Jeff Tweddale on 08 Jul 2008 11:09 AM

Switching Merchant Accounts

When switching merchant accounts two things you need to be aware of:

1) Changing a MyCard profile and testing the new processor requires a one-time charge of US$350. Talk to the new merchant provider who is requiring this change, as we have seen that many merchant providers pick up the 'switch costs' that we must charge in order to assure the gateway is properly working. All we need is an affirmative email response that we can bill this fee to your card on file or we can invoice the new merchant provider if they agree to pay the fee. If your merchant account provider requires the form to fill out to give us the new merchant information, have them download the form from and fill out the details to fax to us at +1-718-228-5959 so we can be ready for the change.

2) There are some considerations you want to ponder prior to the switchover. Here is a sample switchover plan:

• BookingCenter will 'settle credit cards' currently in the pending the batch
• BookingCenter will install the new processor
• BookingCenter will issue test transactions for .01 on all major cards
• BookingCenter will settle the test transaction for .01
• BookingCenter will confirm with your processor if settlement occurs properly (we have access to the Vital/VisaNet 'help desk' if necessary) to make sure we are resolving correctly
• all future transactions will then process into the new account

The only caveat to this plan, is that authorizations taken at checkin to in-house guests (those checked in before we make this change but not settled with a 'payment' against their credit card) will become void.

We have three solutions we recommend - each customer chooses a different one for their own reasons:

Approach 1
To avoid losing any potential revenue that was pre-authorized, you can go into all in-house guests and issue an 'apply payment' for all charges that have accrued, and this will resolve their existing authorizations.

Then, you can do a manual authorization for the amount desired once you have the word form BookingCenter that the new processor is working. The down side to this approach is that the customer will have two charges for their single stay on their credit card bill - one from old processor, one from the new one.

Approach 2
This approach is to simply do a manual authorization for the TOTAL expected revenue of each in-house reservation once you have the word form BookingCenter that the new processor is working. The down side to this approach is that the customer will have two large authorizations on their card, and that can get them into a 'spending bind'. However, you can also manually release the old authorizations to prevent this from being a hassle.

Approach 3
Alternatively, you can do nothing about new authorizations, manually release the old authorizations, and hope that each in-house guest's card will have sufficient funds to settle the bill at checkout. The down side to this is easy to understand - there is no authorization saved to guarantee funds.

If you have questions, call our Support folks at +1-707-874-3922 ext. 202. We will be happy to make this change for you and assure it goes smoothly.

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