Interchange Plus pricing also know as Cost Plus or Pass-through pricing is the most common credit card processing today and is designed to be very transparent so you know what you are really paying. This model should pass through Interchange charged by the Credit Card companies and the Card issuer fees (Assessments etc) at Cost and processing fees are covered by a small markup commonly called “discount” and a per item fee or Authorization fee. Additional fees may include a daily batch settlement, admin, paper statement, electronic statement, paper supplies etc – each of these fees should be clearly stated out in your agreement and not be a surprise when you get you first statement.
Sadly not everyone is getting charged what they agreed too. For example: this week, I came across a business that even though they were processing a lower than average volume had a discount rate that was exceptionally low, this didn’t really compute. On the surface they appeared to have a very competitive rate, however their overall effective rate told a different story as it was higher than average, even though they are taking in 45% of their transactions on debit cards! Upon further analysis I discovered all of their listed interchange fees were around 35% over cost and their processor was padding their fees! So even if you are quoted an exceptional rate that doesn’t mean you are actually getting them.
You can request a statement analysis to see if there are any hidden costs or “junk fees” in your statement.