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WOW?! Is this normal debit card activity?


haldir
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Something else I've noticed with people using debit as credit...

 

they don't figure it in when balancing their checkbook. This kind of throws me. Especially when they (and I'm sure some of you will say this, too) say they don't balance their checkbook.

 

Knowing where and how you spend your money is important, especially when there is a possible theft. If you do find yourself with a charge you know nothing about, keeping everything up to date is crucial for clearing inconsistencies. It also helps you know that, yes, you do have enough to cover that video game you're looking at buying.

 

 

heh...we're definitely in that category...we don't keep a ledger in our checkbook. So I guess you could say that we don't balance our checkbook. But, with online banking, and since Chris is an employee we get all the premium services at no extra cost, I can print any kind of report I want any time I want. Plus add the fact that I'm kind of obcessive about finances, always have been. I always know how much we have and what was spent where, but thats just me :upside:

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Yeah; I've had that problem with po-dunk outfits. Some no name gas station in the middle of nowhere Iowa for example took 3 weeks before they finally completed the transaction. Happens often with these types of places.

You don't know how often I've seen this happen with our car wash equipment, and I'm usually the one who gets all the grief from it, when it's usually the stupid car wash owners fault.

 

Here's just a sampling of the things I've seen:

 

- owner decides that paying for a dedicated phone like for both his ATM machine and the car wash terminal is costing too much. Checks with us to see if our equipment can share the line with the ATM, weighs the pros/cons, and and has the phone company cancel the telephone line the car wash terminal is connected to, only he doesn't bother to connect the terminal to the other line. Three months later (yes, three months) he notices he hasn't been receiving any credit card deposits. Our system stores up to 750 transactions when it's offline, but it turns out that was only about 1.5 months worth - meaning for the first 1.5 months of being disconnected, credit card users effectively got their washes for free. The lost income is somehow my fault.

 

- Similar scenario, only at a Convenience store with attached wash. System processes cards just fine for two months after the site opens, then in July, site owner "steals" the phone line to use with his PC in the back office, not realizing it was connected to the car wash terminal. In April, his accountant while doing his taxes notices that he hasn't been receiving any credit card deposits for the car wash - for over 9 months! This time the customer had slower business, so about 6 months worth transactions are in there, but the CC clearing house refuses to process any that are over 30 days old. Again, the customer blames me for the loss of revenue.

 

- car wash owner decides the rates through the companies our equipment is certified with are too expensive, and switches to a company that we aren't certified with. As far as the know-nothing-about-our-equipment-and refuses-to-ask representative from the non-certified company can tell, the equipment is processing cards after he sets it up. Six months later, they discover it is in fact NOT processing cards, and the ones still in memory - about 3 months worth - will have to be manually re-entered. In their effort to save a couple pennies per transaction, merchant ends up losing an estimated $9000 worth of revenue, plus had to pay us for around 40 hours of labor to help diagnose and fix the problem - at $75/hour. As far as I know, they are still in litigation with the other company to get reimbursed for their losses. At least I didn't get blamed on this one.

 

I get one of these types of service calls about once a month. I'm constantly amazed - the credit card revenue typically makes a deposit every working day, yet the number of car wash owners who don't check their bank account balances at least monthly is astonishing. Most of the time, I get the call when they wind up overdrawing their bank account. For most of these guys, their credit card deposits are $100-$200 a day minimum, for many it's much, much more. How can you not notice that you're not getting that revenue, when it amounts to $3000 or more a month? Must be nice to not have to worry about money that much.

 

We do have a lot of owners who are on top of things, and I'll get calls that are "Hey, I missed my deposit yesterday" or "We haven't gotten anything for a week" and sure enough, there will be a problem we have to fix. Those type of calls don't bother me, they are what I'm here for. Same types of problems, they just notice them in a timely fashion. But to not notice for months just amazes me. I've heard similar stories from techs working for our competitors, too - and I'm sure it happens in other industries as well.

 

I swear, there are enough of these owners out there that don't notice, that if I were willing to break the law (and credit card revenue weren't so darn traceble), I could skim a few thousand dollars a month for myself off by hitting these guys for a hundred or so bucks each and I wouldn't be caught by any of them, but because some consumer somewhere noticed something odd about a $5 transaction and called their bank. Heck, one customer of mine didn't notice that one of his employees was skimming by giving her own credit card refunds - it took HER bank notifying him to stop it.

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I'm glad to know that, eastman, because I'll be heading there next week and I *have* (no choice in the matter) to use my government travel card for this trip for all things (except personal purchases and such). Knowing the cabs take credit cards eases my mind somewhat and knowing how long it can take will help me make certain it gets paid properly.

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My card has a debit/ATM and credit feature that both work off my checking account. If I used the Debit/ATM feature, the bank withdrawns that from the account immediately (or a day or 2 if on a weekend). While if I use the credit feature, it all gets paid on the last business day of the banking month (usually 25-28th), in the meantime, I still collect interest on all the funds in the account, up to the point that they are paid out and I am not charged interest fees for using the credit function.

 

i have had citibank play phone tag with me during a cross country trip (Texas to Delaware) because they thought someone had stolen my credit card. They did that twice until that found out that it was a routine occurance.

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I'm glad to know that, eastman, because I'll be heading there next week and I *have* (no choice in the matter) to use my government travel card for this trip for all things (except personal purchases and such). Knowing the cabs take credit cards eases my mind somewhat and knowing how long it can take will help me make certain it gets paid properly.

 

That's about the same as with us. They want everything on the Amex card (and you don't have to submit receipts for Amex charges under $75 with the Honeywell expense system).

 

Airport to convention center or French Quarter is a flat fee cab fare (I think it was about $30). The price doesn't go up (or at least not by much) with more riders, so a shared cab isn't bad at all.

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