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Online Credit Card Processing

You can take advantage of online credit card processing whether you currently accept credit cards or not.

There are several ways of doing this which don't need to cost a bundle to set up and use.

1) Using Paypal as your Payment Provider for "Real Time" charges.

This is the most economical way of handling your credit card transactions if you don't already have a Merchant Account. Paypal is known world-wide, and handles more online transactions than all the other providers combined. There are over 100 million registered Paypal users, and a person does NOT have to register with Paypal to pay you with their credit card. Many people prefer to pay with Paypal since they do not have to enter their credit card information online if they are registered with them, and it just takes one click to pay.
We can put a payment button on your site which will take your client to a secure server at Paypal to enter their credit card information, and then they will be sent back to your web site. Both you and your client will receive an email detailing the transaction, and the money will be instantly accredited to your account. You can also send email invoices through Paypal for payments. You can see how this works by going to one of our payment pages in the Site Models. You would normally use this method of charging by first confirming the client's reservation dates, and then sending them to your Payments Page.
The cost is 2.9% + 30 cents per transaction, with a reduction in charges depending on your monthly totals. That means if you receive a $100.00 payment, your cost is at most $3.20, and less if you put through over $3,000 per month. There are no setup fees, monthly fees, or recurring fees of any kind. If you do not yet have a Web site Payments Standard Account* yet, just go here and sign up .... it is free and takes just a short time to do. There is no extra charge to set this up in your site.
*Note - the "Web site Payments Standard Account" is a combination of what the Business Account and Premier Account used to be, and either of those types of accounts are fine to use also.

2) Charging a deposit when client makes a reservation request which you can put through or void later.

Your Payments page can also be set up using the free Paypal "Web site Payments Standard Account" to charge a deposit when someone makes a reservation request, but not put through the charge until you approve the request. You could also void the charge if you do not wish to confirm their reservation request. This would get them to commit at the time of making a reservation request and not keep searching for another rental. The only disadvantage is it must be a set amount, or a choice of amounts. You can see an example of how this works here.

3) Charging through the Paypal "Virtual Terminal":

Paypal also has a service called "Virtual Terminal" which expands upon what you can do within a regular Business Account for charging credit cards. With it you can take your renter's card information either on a secure server online, by phone, fax, mail, or in person, and make the charge yourself through Paypal without them needing to do anything. You could charge the deposit, and then later make other charges when due, all without their having to go through Paypal to make the payment. If you have a Paypal Business Account or Web site Payments Standard Account it costs $30 a month for this extra service. You can go here to learn more about it. You can also upgrade to Web Site Payments Pro which gives you more flexibilty in making charges.
We can set up a system where you can securely take their credit card information online, which will automatically email a receipt to your client along with a Notification of Payment to you. You will have an Administration Area in which you can securely access the credit card details, and where a complete record of all transactions is kept. We can also have an option available for them to pay with their Paypal account if they would prefer that. You can see an example of how it works here.
There is a $260 extra charge to set this up in your web site.

NOTE: A regular Paypal Business Account has limits as to the amount that you will be able to charge a client, which is partly determined by how much they may have already charged through Paypal that month. If you need to charge rather large amounts for deposits (like over $4000), you may encounter problems unless you upgrade to a Virtual Terminal or Website Payments Pro.

4) Take credit card information online to charge through your existing Merchant Account "Virtual Terminal":

Most all Merchant Accounts come with the ability to handle credit card payments through a built in "Virtual Terminal". We can set up a payment button on your web site which can collect your client's personal and credit card information on a secure server where you can access it in order to put a charge through on their credit card. Everything is handled with several layers of security, and the credit card information is never revealed in an insecure manner for total protection. Your client will be emailed a receipt, and you will receive an email Notification of Payment. You will have an Administration Area you log into to collect the credit card information, and will have a complete record of all transactions.
You can also have other forms of payment available as an option, such as by Paypal if they would prefer paying through them. You can see an example of how it works here.
There is a $260 charge to set this up.

5) Charge credit cards through a Merchant Account in "real time":

It is possible to charge credit cards directly online through a Merchant Account instead of using a Virtual Terminal. We can set this up for you if you have a Paypal Web site Payments Pro account since they act as their own Payment Gateway and a separate one is not required. With Paypal Web site Payments Pro the main advantage is the payment process does not have to go to the Paypal site unless one chooses to use "Express Checkout" to pay with their Paypal account. The process would look similar to what it does in the Virtual Terminal example, and can be made to blend in with your site throughout the entire checkout process. There is an extra monthly fee of $8 for the secure server for this option, plus a $280 setup fee.
It is possible to set this up using a Merchant Account other than Paypal Payments Pro, but there will be extra fees involved because of the requirement of setting up a separate Payment Gateway along with it's charges and fees. The Paypal Web site Payments Pro Merchant Account has a built in Payment Gateway, so a separate one with all the extra expenses and time involved to set it up is not required.

OR, if you are already taking charges online at another location on the internet, we can just link to that without any extra charges involved.

6) How much does it cost to set up these options on your site?

1 - Using a "Submit Payment" button with a Paypal Business Account or Web site Payments Standard Account to take online charges:
There is no extra charge to set this up.

2 - Taking deposit money "real time" using "Authorize and Capture" through Paypal when your client makes a reservation request, and putting the charge through or voiding it later:
There is no extra charge to set this up.

3 - Collecting credit card information securely online for charging through your Paypal or other Merchant Account's Virtual Terminal:
There is a $260 setup fee.

4 - Charging "Real Time" through a Merchant Account:
The charge can vary.
* If using Paypal Web site Payments Pro, it costs $280 to set it up, and $8 per month additional hosting fee for secure server.
* If using some other Merchant Account, the cost to set up will vary depending on what is required to configure it with a Payment Gateway and it's associated costs and fees. This usually runs around $350+ to set up, plus the $8 per month additional hosting fee.

If you aren't already signed up with Paypal to receive payments, you can find out more about it and sign up here. However you decide to take payments, having Paypal as an option is a good idea since many people prefer to use them for online transactions.

Taking Payments by Check :

The best and also most economical way for you to take deposits and additional payments would be to take a credit card for the deposit to secure the booking, and then have the guest mail you a check for the balance in advance of the trip. This minimizes the fees yet secures the booking instantly.

The problem with checks though is that they can come back to you unpaid or payment stopped or uncollected funds, etc for up to 21 days. There have been lots of reports of forged Cashiers Checks also, and if you accept one you are out the money. If you do take money by check or Cashiers Check, make sure you have plenty of time before their stay to ensure payment will go through.


Collecting Credit Card Information should be done in the proper manner. If it is not, you could be held liable for any damages.

DO NOT have credit card information sent by email. That is in no way secure and you could be liable for losses.

DO NOT take credit card information online unless it is done on a secure server or through a secure Payment Provider such as Paypal.

DO NOT store credit card information in an online database. Even though fairly secure, it is possible that others could access that information if not on a secured server (which all shared hosting is not).

DO NOT use your Merchant Account for online transactions unless it is expressly set up for that. Doing otherwise could get your account terminated. There are ordinarily extra fees involved.

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