Feature Request: Pre-authorization, refundable deposits, and open bar tab support
The title of this post has been edited from the original: How can I pre authorize a card?
We run a business where our customers "rent" an item. Before they rent they have to put their credit card on file for a $250 deposit. If they do not return the item their card gets charged the $250.
Lately we've had a lot of this item walking away and cards being declined.
Is there a way to check to make sure the funds/card is good before we accept that card for the deposit? And avoid when we go to charge the card the $250 deposit and the card getting declined?
Thanks for posting in the Seller Community!
While we do have an open tickets feature that will allow you to create a sort of "tab" for your customers, if you use a customer’s credit card to create a new open ticket, the card will not be charged at that time and their payment information will not be stored within the app. Right now Square does not offer the ability to keep card information stored on an open ticket. This is a feature we may make available in the future, however we do not have a timeline to share at the moment. Thanks for resurfacing this feature request.
Unfortunately Square doesn't allow for holding a tab open with credit cards at this point.
You can run open tickets and create a tab, but unless you physically hold onto the card there's no way currently.
This is a heavily requested feature here on the community, though, so hopefully.......?
The only way around it currently is Square's Card on File feature: you create a customer, enter their card info, then assign it to the ticket. It's cumbersome at best in a busy bar environment, though.
@ORSLLC Thanks for the question!
@mremele Thanks for your help! You're on the right track with this one. 👍🏻
Currently, Square Point of Sale doesn’t offer the ability to pre-authorize cards. While this feature isn't something that's available right now, I can definitely see how it would be helpful. I would caution you to avoid using refunds a workaround, as it can tie up your customer's money for up to 7 days (depending on their bank). A better option may be to charge a percentage up front as a down payment, and then subtract this amount from their final bill.
One thing to note is that the ability to pre-authorize is something that you can do if you use Square Appointments. If a business is set up to accept pre-payments for online bookings and also to confirm client-booked appointments, Square will authorize the card at the time of booking, and keep a hold on that amount for 3 days. When you go in to confirm the appointment, we'll bill the card. I recognize that using our Appointments software may not work well for all types of businesses (like equipment rental businesses), but it is an option for those offering service-based business like salons, etc. Learn more about scheduling and setting up appointments.