Smart Payment Cards Are Coming


In 2015, over 2 billion smart payment cards were distributed.  That’s up 34% over 2014.  American’s are demanding “contact less” cards featuring the so-called “tap and go” technology.


What is a smart card?  Similar to Apple Pay or Google Wallet (which use your smart phone), a smart card is a single card that contains all of your different credit cards, frequent flyer mileage accounts, in-store cards and member loyalty cards all tidied up into one dynamic card.


Smart credit cards primarily offer convenience while maintaining security. Instead of carrying a dozen cards (including gift and rewards cards), all your payment options are in one dynamic card.


You may be wondering how all this works.  It works like this: A card similar to the magnetic stripe cards you currently carry is embedded with a Bluetooth connection that it uses to act as a variety of cards.  At least two companies have entered the space: Swyp and Stratos.  You'll have to wait to get them, though. They are currently taking pre-orders.



The selling point on smart credit cards is that they offer convenience. Instead of crowding your wallet with many cards, one digital card represents them all.  Stratos, and  Swyp achieve this in an unexpected way. When you receive one of these cards, it comes with a magstripe reader that looks a lot like the Square or PayPal card readers. Once you've confirmed your identity, you'll be able to add your "old school" cards to the smart card's app by swiping them through the card reader. Using Bluetooth, the app loads the information onto your smart credit card. How can one magnetic stripe act as many different cards? Like this: When you select the card you want to use, an induction coil embedded within the card sends a signal that re-programs the magnetic strip.


They're just like any other credit card, so you should be able to use them everywhere.  Most of the credit cards in your wallet are actually equipped with two magnetic stripes, called "Track 1" and "Track 2." You can't see them.  They are usually masked under what looks like a single stripe. Track 1 is primarily used for your name, while Track 2 is used for your credit card number.  If a credit card contains both tracks, then your card will be accepted universally. But, if the card only contains one track (Track 2), then some credit card terminals might not be able to read it.   Smart cards can also be used with ATMs.


There are many new built-in security features that will protect you if you lose the card.  The biggest feature is that your Smartphone must be present for your smart card to connect with via blue tooth.  Tapping the card on a hard surface prompts you to enter a four-digit code into your phone for the card to work.

Tips For Saving On Credit Card Processing


Tips For Saving On Credit Card Processing


As a small business owner, you know the value of every dime. To grow your business you must pay close attention to every expense.  Unfortunately, accepting credit cards means incurring processing expenses.

Typically, credit card processing companies charge as much as 5 percent on everything earned from credit card sales, including interchange costs, processing costs, and even statement fees. Because most people pay with plastic rather than cash, you need to accept credit cards in order to survive.  According to the latest statistics, by 2017 only 23 percent of all point-of-sale (POS) purchases will be made with cash. At the same time, a 33-percent increase in credit card use is anticipated. You can reduce your expenses.  Here are some tips:

Comparison Shop

Before choosing a credit card processor, do some comparison shopping, since some providers have much higher fees for the same type and level of service. Most importantly, look for hidden fees by reading every word of the “terms and conditions.”  You also need to choose a reputable company like Chosen Payments. In addition to saving on processing fees, you gain access to other critical services such as online reporting, mobile applications marketing, ecommerce integration, and more.

Purchasing versus Leasing a Machine

While it might seem as if leasing a credit card terminal is cost-efficient, in reality you will spend up to 20 times more than if you purchased it outright. The other issue is that leasing comes with a long-term contract that cannot be cancelled.  The average cost of leasing a machine is between $40 and $70 per month, whereas the purchase of a terminal is anywhere from $200 to $400, depending on what you need.


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FASTTRAK 1ST QTR Release Notes


Summary of Release Notes
Version 20.2017.0117.3 (04/08/2017)
    • Moved TLC reporting from main grid to the reports section under Reports & Stats -> Bookings Revenue Analysis -> Booking License Summary
    • Added pricing zone match support where Postal Code is a higher value than City. this is enabled under Reservations tab in System Settings.
    • Added Invoiced Passenger (groups or multiple pass. In stops) report under Reports & Stats -> Revenue Analysis -> Invoice Passengers By Invoice Date
    • Added support for customer profile pricing zone defaults when importing via a group.
    • Fixed issue where some addresses did not select suggestion correctly and a different street number was set.
    • Added option to allow an operator to hide the yellow highlighting if TomTom geocoding is not successful.
    • Added group name as an optional column to dispatch grid for managing groups in the dispatch Grid.
    • Group import will now take first non-empty note and set that into reservation notes where previously added to passenger notes section.
    • Better support for large messages in ZipWhip integration.


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Minding Your Telephone Manners


Helpful Ideas For Your Business

Minding Your Telephone Manners

Because most of us conduct business by telephone, having exceptional phone manners is a key to landing sales and obtaining repeat business.  The voice answering the phone represents your business.  From the way we answer our phone, to the way we hang up our phone can leave a positive first impression that is reinforced with a positive ending impression.  Annoying things to callers include being placed on hold, not having basic information or being ill prepared to take the call.  Other failing points include not being friendly and being brisk to get the call over with.  Here are some tips for the successful use of the telephone to conduct business.

The Greeting

If a client was standing before you at a counter, you would of course smile and greet the customer you are about to serve.  Do the same by phone and your smile will come across the line.  Try to answer the phone within three rings.  One ring is the ultimate in customer service.  Make sure you clearly identify your business name and your name as you answer the call.  If you must place a call on hold, always ask, “Would you mind if I put you on hold”?  They may not have time.  You can always take their name and number and call them back.  If you have to place a call on hold, make it as brief as possible.


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