Having trouble using your card at a restaurant, salon, hotel, or gas station? Here are some useful tips when using your gift card at establishments that may apply a pre-authorization charge to the card.
This will generally occur at most restaurants, gas stations, and hotels. When using a pre-paid card at these types of merchants, an additional charge is often automatically added to your total to ensure sufficient funds are available on your card.
This additional charge is typically returned to the card's balance in 7 to 10 business days if the purchase is successful. The purchase will be declined when the merchant requests authorization is an amount greater than the available card balance. In most cases, the merchant is not aware of this additional charge and is unable to prevent this from happening.
If using your pre-paid card at a restaurant, hair salon, food delivery service, or any other establishment that often accepts tips, an additional percentage, usually 20%, will be added to your bill. This is done to ensure sufficient funds are on your card in the event you would want to add a tip after your card is swiped. If a tip is not added, the additional 20% will return to your card’s balance in a few days.
An additional authorization charge may also be added to your bill when using your card at a hotel or car rental establishment. If there are insufficient funds on your card to support this charge, the transaction will be declined. If the transaction is successful, the additional charge will return to your card within 30 business days.
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