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Transax Merchant Services

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Thursday, January 31st, 2019
Best Payment Providers

What We Like

Transax offers discounted rentals for countertop, portable, and online card machines. Also, Transax is honest about its partnership with Elavon, and its representatives were professional and knowledgeable.

What We Didn't Like

Transax is not a merchant service provider, so merchants do not enter into direct agreements with the company. Also, standard card machine rental contracts last for 48 months, making it one of the longest agreements offered in the UK.


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Marketing

Sales

Support

Pricing

Overall

Overview

As one of the UK’s largest discounted card machine rental company, Transax supports approximately 20,000 business in Ireland, France, and the UK process more than 2 million transactions per day.

Based in Birmingham and backed by the large international payments provider, Elavon, Transax is able to offer comprehensive payment services for merchants who handle in-person and contactless transactions. Its partnership with Elavon, a subsidiary of U.S. Bankcorp, means that card payments can be accepted through a Transax Merchant Services terminal from any Visa or MasterCard card issuer. Elavon provides the authorization service through the terminal and settles the funds once a transaction is processed. Additionally, if you have other merchant acquiring requirement beyond the one with Elavon, you also can accept American Express and Diners Club. Therefore, Transax does not actually provide any of the actual merchant account services.

With Transax’s rentals, you get several additional services at no charge. Merchants can offer debit card customers “cashback” service. Also, it offers Dynamic Currency Conversion (DCC), which gives foreign tourists and visitors the option to paying in their own currencies with their MasterCard and Visa cards. DCC allows you to receive a share of the currency commission. Finally, Transax offers a cheque warranty. So, if you get a bad cheque, Transax pays the full amount for you. Finally, it also offers merchant cash advances, which a financing alternative to a small business loan. Advances are based on future credit card sale earnings, and eligibility often does not rely heavily on credit scores.

Marketing

Overall, we found Transax’s approach to be clear and straightforward. However, for its terminal rentals, Transax does use deceptive rate quoting. Using starting at rates, gives customers the impression that is what they will end up paying. However, only top-tier merchants, those that are not considered high risk, have poor credit, or other issues, are likely to get the rate that is shown on the site. It regularly uses Twitter to promote its same day funding and updated card machines, and also encourages people to call for quotes to see how it can save you money. There is nothing dishonest about its approach on social media.

Honesty

Though Transax’s overall approach is not misleading, there are quite a few complaints about its representatives not being notified of their contracts’ automatic renewal clause, some fees, and other terms for its equipment rentals.

Sales

Transax uses telemarketers, direct sales agents, and field sales agents to build its customer base. Additionally, it uses a referral program. Existing or newly signed merchants can get a payment of £50 if a person they refer successfully sign up for services with Transax. Its partner, Elavon, however, works with numerous resellers and partners throughout the UK. There have been reports of resellers using deceptive tactics to gain customers. Clients also have complained that resellers have failed disclose all of Elavon’s many fees.

Support

Though customer service representatives were polite, any questions we had about merchant accounts they were unable to answer. They were professional and asked us for our contact information, so its partner could reach out to us. When we declined, the representative gave us the contact information we could use if we changed our minds.

Staff Education

The team went into detail about the many machines it offered and their features, and even mentioned that the standard contract was 48 months. However, we questioned whether there was an early termination fee, and the representatives attempted to avoid answering. Also, no one mentioned its automatic renewal clause.

Responsiveness

Transax was quite responsive and helpful during calls. However, we found it mysteriously odd that they were not very responsive via email. It took five days to get a returned response.

The representatives were very knowledgeable about the different card machines they offered, as well as the features. They were professional, courteous, and well trained about their offerings.

Availability

Transax offers dedicated sales and technical support for its card machine rentals from local representatives in the UK and Ireland. They can be reached via phone, email, or contact form during business hours. No live chat or 24/7 support is offered. However, any questions or concerns related to merchant account services will have to be handled by the provider, Elavon or any other acquiring merchant provider that has partnered with Transax. Elavon offers phone and email support 24 hours per day, seven days per week.

Pricing

Since Transax only offers equipment rental, it has no information to provide about processing. Since it partners with Elavon, any merchant that signs up for merchant account services will be subject to the provider’s pricing. Elavon charges a host of other fees on top of processing rates and flat fees for transactions. Elavon’s transaction rates start at 2.95% and per transaction fees start at 10p, additionally, all approvals are contingent on an underwriter’s review.

Additional fees charged by Elavon include:

  • Setup fee £25
  • PCI compliance £30 (yearly)
  • Monthly fee per service starting at £10
  • Minimum merchant service charge £20
  • Minimum monthly processing fee up to £25
  • Chargeback fee £15-£30
  • Monthly Statement fee £4.95

With all of these fees, it is important to discuss all of them before signing a contract. Also, it may be worth to contact Transax to see if they have any partners that offer merchant account services. A smaller provider may off exactly what you need but be much more affordable.

Early Termination Fees

Typically, Transax’s equipment rental contract terms are for 48 months with an automatic renewal clause. This is one of the longest contracts offered in the country. If you want to prevent your contract from automatically renewing, you must notify the company in writing 30 days before the agreement is up. If you fail to do this, you will have to continue with another four-year contract or buy out the rest of the agreement to cancel. It has been reported that some of have been quoted early termination fees as high as £1,800.

As for Elavon, its standard contract is for 36 months with an automatic renewal clause. The company advertises that is charges no early termination fee, but it’s not that simple.  No early termination fees are charged if you terminate your customer agreement in accordance with the rights outlined in your specific contract. However, this only applies if you terminate the contract after your business has been operating under the contract for at least six months or more. However, Elavon does not list the early cancellation fee charged when a merchant terminates prior to reaching the six-month period. Also, it is important to mention that Elavon has received a number of complaints over the years about contracts not being terminated even when merchants requested them. When this occurred, merchants were forced to pay months on a contract they weren’t using.

Hardware Costs

Transax offers hardware packages starting at £4.75 per week, which include a terminal and PCI administration fee. There are additional charges for transaction fees based on volume and ticket value. It offers Ingenico and Verifone countertop, portable, and mobile card machines.

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