Topic: Surcharges for credit card payments or specific payment methods  (Read 5258 times)

We are thinking about adding a surcharge for participants who want to pay by credit card. How can we implement a surcharge in ConfTool?

We would like to charge a fee of €30 for participants from abroad who want to pay by bank transfer. How can this be done?

We would like to add a credit card payment fee to participants from outside of the EU. How do we proceed?

First, please check whether a surcharge for a specific payment method is legal in your area. We cannot provide legal advice and the following statements serve informational purposes only. Please check with a legal professional before you introduce any kind of surcharges.

If you are using PayPal, please remember that in most countries they do not permit surcharges in their terms and conditions for merchants. Please check your user agreement with PayPal whether you are allowed to impose a surcharge or any other fee for accepting PayPal as a payment method.

If you are from the United States, federal laws allow merchants to levy surcharges, however state level laws may prohibit you from charging extra, e.g. for credit card payments. If in doubt, please seek your own legal advice.

Currently (November 2019) surcharges are not allowed in Canada or Switzerland.

If you are from one of the European Union member states, then - in general - you are not allowed to charge extra fees when participants from the EU use a common payment method like credit cards. There are exceptions:
  • The participant uses a card from American Express or Diners Club (so-called tripartite networks or three-party schemes, i.e. cards that are both issued and redeemed by the same company).
  • The participant uses a business or corporate credit card, where the employer is billed instead of the participant (as private individuals).
  • Online payment solutions that rely on a third party service provider are used such as PayPal, Swish, Pay Now (Sofort / Klarna), iDEAL, KBC (such services are not yet covered by an EU directive).1,2,3
In all cases, the extra fee must not exceed the amount that was actually charged by the bank or acquirer to process the participant’s payment.
The rules are quite complex and considering that almost any payment method causes costs (e.g. international bank transfers or checks often cost about $20-$40), organizers are usually well advised to simply consider their potential payment costs in the total fees for all participants.

If you still want to incorporate a surcharge for specific payment options, we can add a function that charges a certain fee for each registration automatically (however, usually not a percentage of the total fee). We would charge extra for this bespoke programming. Please contact us and send us your requirements so we can provide you with a quote.

If you do not need to charge VAT/taxes for your conference and want to charge a certain percentage as payment fee for all participants and available payment methods, the VAT function may be renamed and used for this purpose.