Our Overall Rating:

Cardsave

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Monday, July 30th, 2018
Best Payment Providers

A Good Fit For:


What We Like

Cardsave is fairly transparent with pricing, and due to its acquisition by WorldPay, it offers cutting-edge features and tools.

What We Didn't Like

Cardsave is not a good option for smaller businesses and startups; they will not be able to keep up with fees and they are likely to feel ignored when it comes to customer service. Equipment terminal leases are long and can only be cancelled by buying the agreements out.


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Marketing

Sales

Support

Pricing

Overall

Overview

Founded in 1995 in Lincolnshire, Cardsave was considered one of the largest independent service providers in the UK. It offered point of sale (POS) terminals and card machines and negotiated rates for credit card processing through partners, like WorldPay. In 2010, WorldPay bought its former partner out and made it part of its global network of payment solutions providers. In 2014, Cardsave was completely rebranded as Worldpay. When Cardsave was acquired, it was being used by more than 65,000 businesses in the UK. Its site, Cardsave.net still exists and users can gain access to some of its old services, including card machine rentals, ball accounts and services are offered directly through WorldPay.

Marketing

Its site is full of decent information, but its pedestrian, gimmicky, and unprofessional manner doesn’t promote its products and service well. Most importantly, there is nothing misleading about the language or its rates.

CardSave also tries to drum up business with a cliched referral program. CardSave gives a £100 Amazon.co.uk gift card to merchants who recommend a friend who signs up with the company. This is part of the way its telemarketing sales operates.

Honesty

There are numerous complaints of sales agents failing to fully and clearly explain its automatic renewal clause. Also, there are multiple reports from customers about agents failing to explain fees, and its equipment rentals.

Sales

As part of WorldPay, CardSave uses telemarketers and independent sales agents to gain customers. This is often a negative approach to sales because it leads to many complaints of about dishonest pricing and undisclosed fees and terms, as well as misleading information about contract length. This is definitely the case with CardSave. There are plenty of complaints about aggressive sales tactics, hidden fees, and much more.

Availability

Cardsave is available via phone, email, and its live chat. Support is available 24 hours per day, seven days per week for current customers. Also, it is available via Facebook and Twitter.

Support

In terms of responsiveness, CardSave has some work to do. We waited three days for a return email, which was beyond disappointing. However, this wasn’t the most disappointing part. All it said was that it received our email. It didn’t prompt us to call, ask for any additional information, or anything else. Calling was equally bad. After waiting one time for up to 30 minutes, when our call was transferred it was lost.

Staff Knowledge

We cannot stress this enough – the staff needs to be better informed and trained. They lacked basic knowledge of contracts and services, and were very unenthusiastic. We learned more from its website than anywhere else.

Staff Interaction

We had little interaction with staff, which is what several other smaller merchants have reported. The staff was unenthusiastic, confused, and vague. Information we received was inconsistent, and, at least one team member, we spoke to told us he was new and was still learning all of the details. Overall, we have to say the interaction was pitiful.

Pricing

Since Cardsave.net now links to Worldpay, you can access the same contract options, packages, and rates that is offered by WorldPay. Three package options are available: Pay as You Go, Fixed Monthly, and Standard.

The Pay as You Go contract charges a flat-rate monthly fee for a terminal and all fees. You pay a custom transaction fee, with a flat rate for debit and credit, averaging at 2.75%. You also pay a start-up fee of £150. This contract is a good option for merchants that don’t want to worry about surprises. Pay as You Go allows you to know what you’re paying by charging one flat rate and no other fees except for transaction costs. Keep in mind that you pay monthly for the merchant account and payment gateway, but you will enter into a minimum 18-month contract to rent the terminal. The downside of this is that you will pay an early termination fee if you try to end the contract before its up.

With the Fixed Monthly solution, you are charged a single flat-rate based on all services, total monthly income, transaction volume, the number of services and terminals you want and use, and business risk. However, you will sign a contract with WorldPay for up to 36 months. This contract cannot be cancelled, and if you want to end it, you will need to buy it out in full. There is no start-up cost, but you must commit to a minimum 18-month contract to rent the terminal. Again, you will pay an early termination fee if you try to cancel the contract before its reached its end.

With the standard plan, you pay individually for each service, with a split rate for debit and credit. This offering allows you to pay for exactly what you’re using and not more and can save you considerably if you accept a great deal of debit cards. However, you will have to pay each service cost out of pocket. For example, you will pay a custom monthly fee, an average of 2.75% + 20p for credit and 0.75% for debit, £17.45 or more per month for a terminal, and £29.99 per year for PCI management. The contract is available for 12-36 months, and you cannot cancel it. Terminal rentals are available for a minimum of 18 months.

Cost breakdowns for the three options:

Pay as You Go Charges

·         Monthly fee: £49.99

·         Start-up fee: £150

·         Transaction fees: Starting at 2.75%

·         Terminal rental: Included

·         Minimum monthly service charge: None

·         PCI-compliance fee: Included

·         Online portal charge: £4.99

·         Virtual terminal charge: £9.95

·         Pay by Link charge: £9.95

·         Online Payment Gateway charge: Included

Fixed Monthly Charges

·         Monthly fee: Custom

·         Start-up fee: None

·         Transaction fees: Included

·         Terminal rental: Included

·         Minimum monthly service charge: None

·         PCI-compliance fee: Included

·         Online portal charge: Included

·         Virtual terminal charge: £9.95

·         Pay by Link charge: £9.95

·         Online Payment Gateway charge: £19.99

Standard Charges

·         Monthly fee: Custom

·         Start-up fee: None

·         Transaction fees: Starting at 2.75% for credit and 0.75% for debit, plus 20p per transaction for each

·         Terminal rental: £17.45+ per month

·         Minimum monthly service charge: £15.00 per month

·         PCI-compliance fee: £29.99 per month

·         Online portal charge: £4.99

·         Virtual terminal charge: £9.95

·         Pay by Link charge: £9.95

·         Online Payment Gateway charge: Included

With the Pay as You Go and the Standard options, membership into the Worldpay Benefits Club is included. The cost for the club is £19.99 for the Fixed Monthly plan. The club aims to help merchants say money on business tools and services. The club grants members access to hundreds of business, personal and educational benefits and discounts on popular brands.

Additionally, WorldPay charges a £30 chargeback fee, which is high for the industry, and a PCI non-compliance fee of £125.

Hardware Costs

Before the acquisition, Cardsave offered terminals, card machines, and manual card processing machines, which could be used if a terminal stopped working. Worldpay’s offerings don’t include manual machines, but it does lease its own branded versions of Ingenico PDQ machines. It also leases countertop terminals, portable card readers, mobile card readers, as well as an item known as the “My Business Hub POS.” Starting at £50 per month, the hub is a complete POS with a till, barcode scanner, card reader, and tablet-based EPOS. Rates for card machines and terminals start at £17.45 per month.

An online payment gateway starts at £19.95 per month, with an additional fee of 10p per transaction for Pay as You Go and Standard contracts that kick in after the first 500 transactions. Merchants also pay transaction costs based on their agreed-upon rates.

Early Termination Fees

Early termination fees are variable, which means merchants pay whatever amount is listed in their specific contracts. As for terminal leases, merchant are  liable to pay all sums due from the date of termination to the end of the minimum term less a 5% discount if they terminate before the end of their minimum terms. Typically, terms range between 12 and 36 months.

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