“Profitability is coming from productivity, efficiency, management, austerity, and the way to manage the business.” – Carlos Slim
Merchants in the hotel industry should take control of their credit card processing performance and find the right merchant account provider that would give them the best available terms of service.
Hotel Card Payment Authorization
Through authorization, card issuers approve or decline transactions.
- Requesting An Authorization
US hotels are required to get an authorization for their transactions. Non-US hotels are required to authorize their transactions if:
- There is a suspicious transaction
- The total amount of a transaction exceeds the floor limit
- No card imprint is available for a handwritten sales draft
- The card isn’t signed
- The card has expired
- When A Guest Decides To Stay Longer
When a guest extends his/her stay, request an incremental authorization for the additional transaction amount. Confirm with your guest the length of his/her extended stay, and take the steps required for a standard authorization for the additional amount.
In case the request is declined, contact your customer and ask for another payment form. If the extended stay is beyond 2 weeks, get an authorization for a new transaction.
- Authorization Types:
– Estimated – The guest’s total charges should be estimated for check-in.
– Final Authorization And The 15% Rule – Authorization is required for checkout if:
- No previous estimated authorization is available, and the actual transaction amount exceeds the hotel’s floor limit.
- If an estimated authorization amount is available, follow the 15% rule by adding 15% to the authorization amount estimated previously and comparing the total to the actual, final and the transaction amount.
- Authorization Reversals
With the final transaction amount lower than the authorization amount estimated initially, process an authorization reversal.
- Completing An Authorization Request
- Swipe, wave or insert the card into a chip card reader at the POS or get a card imprint
- Make an authorization approval request for the estimated charges
- Follow the authorization response
Managing Amended And Delayed Charges
The hotel industry is recognized as high risk. Merchants doing a hotel business should look for a highly reputable payment processor in the field to get a safe and reliable merchant account for their business needs. With EMB, especially small hotel owners can enjoy a secure hotel credit card processing to keep up with the demands of the modern hotel industry.
One of the key issues related to hotel management has to do with amended and delayed charges. In case additional charges are required after checkout, amend your customer’s bill if he/she’s agreed to take responsibility for the charges in the service contract.
Bill for amended and delayed charges:
- After checkout, prepare a separate sales receipt for the delayed charges and add “signature on file” to the signature line
- Get an authorization approval
- Keep the transaction receipt
- Attach a copy to your customer’s record
- Mail/email the additional charge information to the cardholder