Surcharge Program

In today’s fast-paced world, credit card transactions have become the norm, but the associated processing fees can take a bite out of your profits. The Surcharge Program at is your ultimate solution for offsetting credit card processing fees while maintaining a strong customer base.

As a merchant, you’re always on the lookout for ways to enhance your bottom line without compromising the trust and loyalty of your customers. Our Surcharge Program does just that, by implementing a small fee for credit card transactions, in compliance with card brand rules and regulations. This encourages customers to consider alternative payment methods, ultimately saving you money on credit card fees.

At, our primary goal is to support businesses like yours in achieving financial success, all while adhering to the highest standards of security and compliance. Our passionate team is dedicated to retail payment processing, providing you with a customized surcharge solution that integrates seamlessly with your existing point-of-sale (POS) systems and software. Join the growing number of merchants who have discovered the powerful advantages of our Surcharge Program, and experience the difference it can make for your business.

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What Is a Surcharge Program?

Surcharge programs offer a strategic solution for merchants looking to cover credit card processing costs. By charging a small fee for a credit card transaction, businesses can preserve their revenue while staying compliant with card brand rules, state, and federal laws.

A surcharge, also known as a checkout or service fee, is an extra charge that merchants can add to a customer’s bill to offset the cost of credit card processing. Typically, merchants absorb this expense themselves. However, with a surcharge program, customers contribute to the cost of using their credit cards. At checkout, your customers are presented with two options:

  • Pay with a credit card and accept the additional fee (a surcharge can match your effective rate for credit card transactions, but it must not exceed 3% per transaction).
  • Choose to pay with cash, debit, or check and avoid the extra charge altogether.

It is only legal to apply a surcharge to credit card purchases. Adding extra charges to debit card, cash, or check transactions to cover processing costs is not permitted. Merchants can only charge the advertised price for their products or services.

When implementing a credit card surcharge program, partnering with a payment processing provider that specializes in this service, like, can make a significant impact on the effectiveness of the program.

Surcharge Programs vs. Cash Discount Programs

While both surcharge and cash discount programs are designed to help merchants offset credit card processing fees, they function differently: a surcharge program passes the credit card processing costs onto the customer, while a cash discount program rewards customers for using alternative payment methods with lower fees. Both approaches help merchants save on processing costs, but they operate in distinct ways.

In a surcharge program, merchants add a small fee to credit card transactions, passing the cost of processing fees onto the customer. The surcharge can be a fixed or a flat fee per transaction, depending on the program’s structure and local laws. As a merchant, you are recommended to display proper signage and notifications at the point of sale and on receipts, informing credit card customers of the surcharge fee and its purpose.

A cash discount program, on the other hand, offers a discount to customers who pay with cash, check, or debit card, rather than credit cards. This incentivizes customers to use alternative payment methods, which often have lower processing fees or no fees at all. To implement these cash discounts, merchants typically display the regular (credit card) pricing and the cash discount pricing separately, either on price tags or on the receipt, making it clear to customers that they can save money by paying with cash or other non-credit payment methods.

Why Implement a Surcharge Program

Credit card surcharges benefit merchants in several ways:

Cost savings

One of the most significant advantages of a surcharging program is the ability to offset credit card processing fees. By transferring a small percentage or a set fee of the transaction to the customer, you can save significantly on processing costs, freeing up capital for other business operations and investments.

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Increased revenue

By reducing the financial burden of credit card processing fees, you can potentially increase your total earnings. With lower operational costs, your business can shift the focus towards enhancing your product or service range and devote resources to growth-oriented initiatives. This proactive approach not only fosters business expansion but also contributes to a stronger financial position, ultimately resulting in a positive impact on the company’s bottom line.

Enhanced competitiveness

A surcharging program can level the playing field for small and medium-sized businesses, allowing them to compete more effectively with larger enterprises. Without the financial burden of processing fees, businesses gain the flexibility to redistribute their resources and focus on areas that enhance their competitive edge.

This can include investing in exceptional customer experiences, implementing targeted marketing strategies, and refining their unique selling propositions. Consequently, this newfound capability allows smaller businesses to carve out their niche in the market and thrive alongside larger competitors, fostering a more diverse and dynamic business landscape.

Pricing flexibility

Surcharging programs can provide greater pricing flexibility, enabling businesses to offer more attractive prices to customers who prefer alternative payment methods such as cash, debit cards, or mobile payments. This flexibility can result in increased customer satisfaction and loyalty.


Implementing a surcharging program promotes transparency in pricing by clearly outlining the fees associated with credit card transactions. This level of openness allows customers to understand the true cost of their chosen payment method and make informed decisions regarding their purchases. By displaying the surcharge fees at the point of sale and on receipts, businesses can provide customers with a comprehensive breakdown of the transaction cost, which includes the product or service price and any additional fees.

Compliance with card brand rules

A well-implemented surcharging program that adheres to card brand rules and regulations is essential for merchants to reap the full benefits while maintaining compliance. All major card brands have specific guidelines regarding the implementation and operation of surcharging programs. These guidelines cover aspects such as disclosure requirements, surcharge amount limitations, and rules for different transaction types.

Adhering to these regulations is crucial for merchants who want to maintain a positive relationship with card brands, ensuring continued support and cooperation. Compliance also helps avoid potential penalties, fines, or even the suspension of card acceptance privileges, which could negatively impact the merchant’s reputation and revenue.

Get Ahead of the Game with Our Surcharge Program

At, implementing a surcharge program is a straightforward and hassle-free process that empowers merchants to fully leverage the advantages of a well-designed surcharging program. Our team of experts will guide you through each step, ensuring all major aspects are covered.

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Customized surcharge program setup

We believe that a successful surcharge program should be tailored to the unique needs of each business. That’s why our team works closely with you to understand your specific industry and customer base, and to develop a surcharge program that aligns with your objectives.

For instance, if you operate in an industry with high transaction values, a fixed surcharge fee may be more appropriate, whereas if your transactions are typically lower in value, a percentage-based fee may be more suitable. Our team will help you determine the optimal surcharge fee structure based on your business’s characteristics, to ensure that the surcharge program is effective in reducing your payment processing costs.

Compliance with card brand rules and regulations

Since compliance with card brand rules and regulations is crucial to the success of your surcharge program, we stay up-to-date with the latest guidelines from all card brands, as well as federal and state laws, to ensure your program operates smoothly and without any potential issues.

We’ll walk you through the process of complying with these guidelines, helping you understand disclosure requirements, surcharge amount limitations, and rules for different transaction types. Our goal is to ensure that your surcharge program is fully compliant, avoiding any legal issues and protecting your business’ reputation.

Ongoing support and assistance

Beyond the initial setup and integration, is committed to providing ongoing support and assistance for the continued success of your surcharge program. Our team will be available to address any questions or concerns you may have, and we will keep you informed of any updates or changes in card brand rules and regulations that may impact your program.

PCI Compliance and Surcharge Programs

PCI (Payment Card Industry) compliance refers to the security standards that businesses must follow when accepting credit card payments. These standards are designed to protect sensitive cardholder data and prevent fraud and data breaches.

At, we recognize that PCI compliance is crucial to the efficacy of any payment processing program, including a surcharge program. We believe that protecting sensitive cardholder data and preventing fraud is essential for building trust with customers and ensuring the long-term sustainability of a business. That’s why we place a high priority on PCI compliance and provide our merchants with the support they need to achieve and maintain compliance. Here’s how we do it:

Offering secure processing

We take the protection of confidential cardholder data very seriously. To ensure the highest level of security, we use processing methods that meet PCI compliance standards, such as point-to-point encryption (P2PE) and tokenization.

Point-to-point encryption involves encrypting payment data at the point of sale and securely transmitting it to the payment processor, ensuring that sensitive information is never stored in an unencrypted format. Tokenization, on the other hand, involves replacing sensitive payment data with a unique identifier called a token, which can be used for subsequent transactions without exposing the original data.

Using these methods allow us to drastically minimize the risk of data breaches and fraud, protecting both merchants and their customers from potential harm. We also regularly review and update our security measures to ensure that we’re always using the latest and most effective techniques.

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Implementing secure technology

We use the latest secure technology to provide a secure payment processing environment for our merchants and their customers.

  • Encryption – to scramble sensitive payment data, such as credit card numbers, at the point of sale
  • Tokenization – to replace sensitive payment data with a unique identifier called a token, which can be used for subsequent transactions, without exposing the original data
  • EMV chip technology – to provide an extra layer of security for in-person transactions by encrypting data on the chip and preventing skimming and cloning of the card
  • Fraud prevention tools – to monitor transactions in real-time, detect fraudulent activity, and prevent chargebacks

Ensuring compliance with card brand rules

Card brand rules and regulations are a set of guidelines established by major credit card companies to ensure the security and reliability of their payment processing networks. Compliance with these rules is mandatory for all businesses that accept credit card payments.

We stay on top of the latest card brand rules and regulations, as well as any changes to PCI compliance standards. This includes compliance with rules related to credit card surcharges, such as disclosure requirements and limitations on the amount of the surcharge. We also offer online payment processing.

Gain Unparalleled Savings and a Competitive Edge with a Surcharge Program: Transform Your Business Today!

Take the strategic leap: Launch your surcharge program with We believe that your hard-earned revenue belongs to you — not the credit card companies. Our team will help you select the ideal surcharging equipment, ensure compliance with all surcharging regulations, and offer unbeatable 24/7/365 customer support. There are no hidden costs or setup fees, only transparent surcharging. We will provide the necessary signage and register you with card brands when you implement a surcharge program. We will also equip you with a terminal or POS system designed to process surcharged transactions effortlessly and securely. If you’re ready to save thousands of dollars annually with free credit card processing, call at (877) 261-5436 or connect with us online.