Are you really getting a good deal on your card payment machine?

The Payment Systems Regulator says the card payment machine market isn’t working for smaller retailers. So are you really getting a good deal?



Illustration showing payment types from card machine, phone, cards




Owner of The Archer holding Handepay Card Payment Machine

Every business owner wants to make things simple, and their payment process is no exception.

A simple payment process means they can accept more payments in the day, and make more money. This is especially true for independent businesses, as every transaction counts.

A card payment machine is an important part of many business’ day to day operations.

Especially now.

And the easier that process is to manage, the less admin they have to do at the end of the day. Which means more time spent at home.

With more customers than ever turning to card and contactless payments, being able to take card payments quickly and simply is essential to actually making money.

When was the last time you analysed how much your card payment machine is costing you?

Or whether you’re getting a good deal?

According to a new report, it’s likely that you could be paying too much.

The report found that independent businesses struggle to get good deals when starting out, and don’t know how to find a better option.

Merchant services are a confusing industry, and it’s difficult for business owners to figure out how much their card payment machine is actually costing them.

This is what Chris Hemsley, managing director of the PSR said in an article published by Talking Retail:

“Our interim report shows that while the supply of card acquiring services works well for the largest merchants, most other merchants - particularly smaller ones - may not be getting a good deal. Many merchants do not shop around or look to negotiate with their existing provider.”

We’ve been helping businesses with their card payment services for almost fifteen years, and we’ve heard the problems they’ve faced.

We understand that it’s tough, especially when it comes to understanding the varied fees involved.

Some suppliers add unnecessary hidden fees, with businesses only discovering them when they receive their first bill.

These charges, such as minimum monthly service charges or PCI DSS fees, aren’t made clear at the point of sale, and can cost a fortune.

We don’t agree with that and are as transparent as possible about the fees our customers pay.

How can you be sure you’re getting a good deal on your card payment services? Here’s some things to consider:

There are numerous fees involved in the card payment acceptance process.

Standard charges that every business accepting cards must pay are:

  • Merchant service charges (the transaction fees you’ll pay each time a customer makes a payment)

  • Terminal rental (the monthly charge you pay for the card payment machine)

  • Interchange and scheme fees (normally included in the standard transaction fee, this charge is applied by the card issuer to cover their costs)

  • Premium card charges (for some cards, you’ll pay a slightly higher fee)


Staff at a bakery behind the till holding coffee, cake and Handepay Card Payment Machine


Handepay Customer holding their card machine

However, there are other fees you may not be aware of that may be added to your monthly bill.

If you’re paying any of the fees below, be aware and start shopping around. They are completely unnecessary:

  • PCI DSS compliance charges (a monthly charge that some providers add for their services in keeping you in line with PCI DSS standards)

  • PCI DSS noncompliance fees (if you don’t comply with PCI DSS, your provider may add charges to your monthly bill. This can total hundreds of pounds per month)

  • Minimum monthly service charge (if you don’t accept a pre-determined amount of transactions per month, some providers top up their charges to the full amount)

  • Statement and reporting charges (your provider may charge you to receive paper statements, or if you want to access online reporting tools)

It’s worth pointing out that if you join Handepay, you can rest assured that we’re totally transparent with our charges.

No matter which of our packages you choose, you won’t pay any unnecessary fees.

Another major factor when analysing your card payment machine services, is the support you’re entitled to receive.

Card payments are the lifeblood of your business, so it’s important that you’ve got a reliable provider who can help if things go wrong.

Are you able to call up and receive help whenever you need it?

Or does your provider limit you to the hours they’re available? Even if you need urgent help.

Many businesses are open late at night or over the weekend, so a provider with constant customer service options is key.

Consider how easy and responsive your support system is, too.

Can you phone up and speak directly to an expert? Or are you passed through different departments to try and get the help you need?

Some providers only offer email support, which can have long wait times – not ideal if customers are waiting to pay.


Handepay customer holding their card payment machine

Could you get a better deal?
Take the Handepay Price Challenge and find out!

One of the findings of the report is that businesses find it difficult to compare card payment machine providers.

We’re here to help.

Take the Handepay Price challenge and we’ll tell you if you’re paying too much.

All you have to do is send us a statement, and our expert team will analyse it and point out any unnecessary fees or high charges.

If we can’t beat your current price, we’ll give you £1,000!

We launched the challenge in 2015.

More than 37,000 businesses have taken us up on our promise since.

We’ve only been beaten six times.
What do you have to lose?


Financial disclaimer:

Terminal hire contracts are provided by Merchant Rentals Limited, who is authorised and regulated in the UK by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) for Consumer Hire under FRN 720500. Terminal hire can be for consumer hire and non-regulated hire contracts. Please check your contract carefully for details. Regulation of all consumer hire fall under the control of the FCA.

Handepay Ltd is authorised and regulated by the FCA for Consumer Credit under FRN 673564. Handepay is a credit broker for consumer hire not a lender.

Handepay acts as an introducer of card acquiring services on behalf of EVO Payments UK, the card acquiring service provider. EVO Payments UK is the trading name of EVO Payments UK Ltd, a payment institution that is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FRN number 959332).

Existing Cards Businesses- The one-month rolling terminal hire contract from Merchant Rentals is only available to businesses that are switching from their current acquirer to EVO Payments UK arranged through Handepay.

New to Cards Businesses- The 12-month terminal hire contract from Merchant Rentals is only available to businesses that are new to card payments and wish to receive acquiring services from EVO Payments UK, arranged through Handepay.

The Next Day Banking Settlement service provided by EVO Payments UK incurs an additional fee of £4 a month on top of your acquiring service charges and fees. Provided your card machine performs a reconciliation before 12am (midnight), you’ll receive settlement of funds the next banking day.

Editorial disclaimer:

The information we provide does not constitute financial advice and might not apply to your business. Always carry out research into your business’ needs when choosing a new merchant services provider.

Sometimes, we link to other third-party websites to provide you with additional information. At the time of publication, we consider the information accurate, however, we do not have control over their content and are not responsible if any information on these websites change.

The products we display on our website are for illustrative purposes only - if your business requires additional facilities, you may receive a different model than advertised.

All of the information contained on this website, including fees, services and functionality, are correct at time of publishing. E&OE.