4

Flagship Merchant Services Review

  • 72 comments
  • Updated on:
  • Review by: Tom DeSimone
Date Established
2001
Location
Charlestown, MA

Highlights:

  • Interchange-plus pricing offered
  • Good customer support
  • Multiple products and services offered
  • No termination fees
  • No setup/application fees

Overview:

With over a decade in the industry, Flagship Merchant Services has stable roots and a comprehensive track record. Founded in 2001, Flagship is a longtime supporter of fair contract terms like no early termination fees, no setup fees and no application fees – all charges which I consider dubious. While many processing companies these days are dropping fees like this, Flagship helped pave the way toward a more consistently fair payments landscape fee-wise. For this, I sincerely applaud them.

Back in 2012 iPayment acquired Flagship, which – in the long run – has provided additional resources and a more direct relationship between provider and processor. There were some bumps in the road during 2013, perhaps due to growing pains and corporate changes accompanying the acquisition, which seems to have manifested a worrisome number of complaints in our comments section and elsewhere. I’ve read all of these remarks and take them very seriously.

At this point, in mid-2014, I believe Flagship has turned a corner toward improving their services. They sign up tens of thousands of merchants each year, so complaints are always going to come up. But I have faith that 2014 will be a better year, thanks to increased accountability for Flagship account reps and better tracking of merchant/rep communication company-wide. You can now expect your communications to be addressed either the same day you reach out, or at the very least soon after. You can also expect to receive a response from a Flagship representative to any complaints you leave on this review.

In terms of general incentives, Flagship will waive your Authorize.Net gateway setup fee (usually about $100), a nice bonus for small ecommerce businesses along with their free shopping cart setup. The free mobile swiper and mobile app provided by Flagship could also come in handy. You will have to do the math for your specific needs, comparing the Flagship numbers with other providers. Overall, they provide fair value. I’m not crazy about Flagship’s PCI compliance fee or standard monthly minimum, but these are industry-standard and fees you’re likely to contend with elsewhere as well. The PCI fee comes directly from their processor, so don’t bother trying to negotiate it. While Flagship primarily markets tiered plans, they’ll gladly set up interchange-plus accounts.

All said and done, Flagship Merchant Services makes the grade as a 4-star provider at the moment. I love that they have no early termination fee, and that they do their best to add value to your processing account. They’re absolutely doing better than average, and in many cases perform very well indeed. Check them out, and please come back to report on your experience!

Products and Services:

Flagship Merchant Services offers a pretty limited number of products and services, which is actually a good sign in my mind. I like to see a provider add value to your account without trying to shove the kitchen sink down your throat. While nothing really sets Flagship apart from the pack here – and I had a hard time locating much useful information in their public advertising – they offer everything you’d need to get started. Offerings include:

  • Merchant accounts: Flagship Merchant Services is not a direct processor. They use a third-party for processing services, mostly through iPayment (their parent company), but in some situations First Data.
  • Gateway/virtual terminal: Gateways come from Authorize.Net, with no setup fee. This could save you about $100 in some cases, and is a solid bonus. This includes the option to use Authorize.Net’s mPOS mobile app and their “Simple Checkout” payment buttons for your website.
  • Mobile processing: Offered through iPayment’s MobilePay. They’ll also hook you up with a free swiper. I haven’t reviewed the app in-depth yet, but it seems capable.
  • Credit card terminal sales
  • Online reporting
  • Shopping cart setup

Fees and Rates:

While Flagship primarily markets a tiered pricing platform, they are completely willing to offer interchange-plus pricing (preferable). Merchants applying at Flagship through our partnership can expect the following:

  • Processing markup over actual cost: 0.30% + $0.10
  • Statement fee: $7.95
  • Monthly minimum: $25 (negotiable)
  • PCI compliance fee: $99 annually

The $25 monthly minimum means you’ll have to process about $8,000 per month on interchange-plus to avoid paying a penalty. If your monthly volume will be less than that, think about negotiating a lower monthly minimum. I consider this a better deal than their tiered plan.

Other fees include:

  • PCI non-action fee: Additional $19.95 monthly (must complete PCI assessment to avoid this)
  • Authorize.Net gateway fee: $7.95

So here’s the bottom line: If you avoid the PCI non-compliance fee and come in under your monthly minimum, Flagship offers fairly competitive pricing. Maybe not the lowest cost-plus markup you’ll find, but overall a good deal for most merchants, and a good overall value.

They have no early termination fee and no hidden junk fees. Flagship is, as of lately, doing a great job of making sure merchants know about the PCI non-compliance/non-action fee and helping them to avoid it (for merchants signing up mid-2014 or later). You’ll be responsible for the network fees (like the FANF), and a fee for chargebacks, but these are unavoidable.

Overall, I am satisfied with the value provided by Flagship Merchant Service.

Contract Length and Early Termination Fee:

Flagship Merchant Services has no early termination fee, making your account with them a month-to-month agreement (which is awesome). Make sure to cancel your account as per the instructions in your contract, though, or else they’ll continue taking monthly fees from your bank account. I suggest you vigorously confirm your cancellation, and get it in writing.

You should note that some merchant have reported difficulty closing their accounts, a problem that Flagship has historically blamed the processor for. The good news is that if this occurs and you are charged monthly fees when your account should have already been cancelled, Flagship will generally reimburse you that fee.

In part to rectify this issue, Flagship has recently (early 2014) instituted a company-wide reporting system for merchant contact. If you contact Flagship for any reason, the contact will be logged and addressed same-day. This will help to make representatives more accountable for handing account closures in a timely fashion. But remember - it’s up to you to file the actual paperwork. The sooner you fax it over, the sooner your account will be closed.

Sales and Advertising Transparency:

While I have confidence in the sales team at Flagship, and have spoken to their salespeople in the past, I believe that a company’s website sets the tone for how they do business in an overarching sense. This marketing is controlled and decided at the corporate level, making it a good predictor of the general sales practices and attitude.

Flagship makes very few fee disclosures on their website, offering visitors little initial guidance or educational material. The only rate quote they give is their regulated debit quote, which is much lower than the overall average for transaction cost:

Rates start at 0.38% + $0.19 per transaction with Free Account Set up!

Consider now that the average interchange fee is close to 1.8%. They don’t even offer a footnote explaining that this rate will only apply to some debit transactions, nor do they go on to explain how rates are decided anywhere on the Flagship site. While I accept that this is a marketing choice and that – in their defense – debit tends to make up 40-50% of transactions overall, I would rather they didn’t provide any rate quote than a single deceptively low number that is likely to cause at least some confusion, regardless of how thorough their salespeople are on the phone. While this is a very low regulated debit quote, that doesn’t necessarily mean that your overall cost will be lower.

Furthermore, although they advertise their credit card terminals with some vigor, Flagship fails to disclose any pricing information. While most providers don’t disclose any pricing information, the best ones do (Helcim and Dharma Merchant Service, to name a couple, and even Elavon recently).

When visiting the Flagship homepage, readers might be impressed to see that Top Ten Reviews rated them the number one merchant account provider in the industry for seven straight years. That’s a pretty big deal, you might think. While it certainly seems like a commendable achievement, I can tell you that Top Ten Reviews is basically worthless when it comes to assessing credit card processing providers. For instance, just in terms of fees, they completely ignore the $100 annual PCI compliance fee charged by Flagship, as well as the $20 monthly PCI non-action fee. They also ignore important considerations like customer satisfaction and sales/advertising transparency. Interchange-plus pricing? I don’t think that Top Ten even knows what that is. So keep this in mind and don’t get sucked in by this marketing. I actually do think that Flagship is worth checking out – in spite of and not because of their Top Ten Reviews rating.

But there’s good news here too. Flagship offers a completely gimmickless “lowest overall cost” commitment. This means that if you come to them with a rate quote from another provider, or with your current provider’s rates, they will match it or beat in almost all cases. I like that they don’t use this as a sales gimmick. They don’t offer $1000 if they can’t meet or beat your rates, a tactic I consider dishonest. Flagship just gives it to you straight. I admire that.

I’m also thrilled to see that Flagship Merchant Services uses an in-house sales team for most of their accounts, since independent sales reps are known for unregulated activities and overall poor training. On average, Flagship provides a consistent and honest sales experience, and they are consistently taking steps to make sure account reps are held accountable (pun intended) for taking good care of you. If you’ve experienced otherwise, please leave us a comment. Or if you can confirm their dedication to your satisfaction, please chime in too!

Customer Service and Technical Support:

While Flagship Merchant Services advertises 24/7 customer support (thumbs up), many merchants have reported a lack of overall quality. During business hours you are likely to get in touch with an in-house representative to help you (which is ideal!), but outside of regular business hours you may see a decline in the quality of service (this is not unusual in this industry). Also in many cases Flagship will have you contact the processor directly, and I haven’t exactly heard stunning feedback about iPayment‘s customer service reps.

I really love that Flagship makes the person who sold you their services your continuing point of contact as a dedicated account manager. Unfortunately, this means that if you get an unresponsive account rep, you could be in for a bumpy ride. While I have every reason to believe that most Flagship reps do a great job, it’s obvious to me that some have been missing the mark. If this happens, I’d encourage you to escalate the matter to his or her manager, and even ask to have your account transferred to a different representative if you simply can’t make it work. At the end of the day, Flagship wants you to be happy. Sometimes you just need to be aggressive to make that happen.

The other good news here is that, like I mentioned earlier, Flagship has instituted a new company-wide customer contact reporting system. This means that your calls and emails are logged and reviewed, and representatives are required to address your concerns the same day you voice them. This added level of accountability has already improved merchant support at Flagship, and I have a good feeling about their future in this regard.

Still, you should be aware that in the past there have been issues, as evidenced by our readers’ comments, especially during 2013.

Furthermore, the Flagship FAQ leaves a lot to be desired, and it’s the only self-service customer support available.

Negative Reviews and Complaints:

Flagship’s internet reputation had a rough year in 2013. You can currently find 46 complaints on RipoffReports, as well as almost 60 complaints in our own comments section. They have an unfavorable C+ rating with the BBB, with 112 complaints in the past three years. 68 of those complaints came in over the past 12 months, demonstrating a rapid rise in complaint volume. In addition to the 112 complaints, Flagship has been reviewed 33 times on the BBB, with 30 of those being negative, three neutral, and zero positive. You can find an additional 42 complaints on ConsumerAffairs.com.

Some of the most common complaints with Flagship Merchant Services include:

  • PCI non-action fee: While I don’t really like to see this fee at all, especially when you’re already paying a PCI compliance fee of $99 with Flagship – the fee itself is not my problem here. The problem is that account representatives have in the past failed to help merchants avoid this fee in many cases. The cost is an additional $19.95 per month for non-action. But the good news here is that Flagship has recently (mid-2014) stepped up its efforts to help merchants avoid this fee by having account reps discuss it with merchants during their welcome call. I’m hoping to see this complaint peter out with time. If you complete the PCI compliance questionnaire, you can avoid this fee.
  • Difficulty cancelling service: This comes up over and over and over again, so I know something is up over there. Having no early termination fee starts to lose its meaning when you’re paying $50+ per month for a service you’re not using and that you wanted to get rid of. I’m hoping to see this complaint taper off this year, since Flagship Merchant Services has taken initiative to increase accountability and transparency when it comes to account rep and merchant communications. If you feel you’ve been treated poorly in this regard, Flagship will usually give you at least a partial refund.
  • Poor customer service after signing: Having your salesperson as a continuing point of contact can make for an overall excellent support experience. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. When your account representative becomes unresponsive, it can be a nightmare. While I believe that Flagship has taken steps to correct this issue, time will tell if they’ve done enough. As of mid-2014, things are looking up for Flagship. My fingers are crossed, but I’ll keep you posted.
  • Billing issues: In these instances, Flagships points the finger at their processor iPayment, and perhaps rightfully so. After all, these mistakes often do come directly from the processor. In my opinion, though, Flagship had ought to provide intensive arbitration and mediation on the merchant’s behalf. This includes account holds/freezes, which you can do your part to avoid by reading this article. Some of these issues are unavoidable though, so these complaints should be taken with a grain of salt.

The good news here: Flagship is generally willing to provide at least partial refunds to make things right. In fact, so far in 2014 Flagship has become one of the most accommodating and generous providers I’ve seen in terms of refunding fees, especially when the BBB is arbitrating.

Positive Reviews and Testimonials:

You can find a couple of merchant testimonials on the Flagship homepage, as well as a small list of logos for companies they provide services for. Aside from that, you won’t find any intensive case studies or reviews.

The most substantial recommendation for Flagship Merchant Services comes from the popular review site Top Ten Reviews, which reviews everything from consumer products to career choices. While Top Ten may honestly and unbiasedly believe that Flagship is the best merchant account provider out there, I have to disagree with them.

Unlike Top Ten Reviews, we only review merchant services and software here. It seems to me that Top Ten misses some very important aspects of the review process. They completely ignore the $100 annual PCI compliance fee charged by Flagship, as well as the $20 monthly non-compliance fee. They also ignore important considerations like customer satisfaction and sales/advertising transparency. Interchange-plus pricing doesn’t seem to be a phrase in their vocabulary. To be frank, I think that the merchant account reviews from Top Ten are driven by arbitrary data and superficial appearances. So while Flagship has indeed won their top spot seven years running, I question the meaningfulness of this award – and so should you.

Not to say this is a bad thing necessarily. You should just realize that it’s more of a marketing ploy than a meaningful assessment.

Final Verdict:

There’s a lot to love about Flagship, to be sure. They generally provide good value, deal with most active sales in-house as far as I know, and let you leave at any time without penalty. I love the freebies they offer, even if they’re presented in a somewhat gimmicky way at times. Flagship is doing a good job overall. It seems like they slipped a little bit in 2013 – maybe due to growing pains stemming from their acquisition by iPayment in 2012 – but are coming back in the first half of 2014 from what I’ve seen so far.

While some complaints that come in under the Flagship name are actually criticisms of their processors, namely iPayment, it’s Flagship’s responsibility to provide excellent arbitration, mediation, and prevention when it comes to processing issues. Some of these issues are unavoidable, not to mention incredibly frustrating for merchant, so make sure to take complaints regarding chargebacks and funding holds with that as context. I don’t think that Flagship’s marketing at the corporate level is nearly as straightforward or useful as other providers, but it’s not hurtful either.

Flagship gets 4 out of 5 stars for the moment. They perform better than the industry standard, but have room for improvement. I’m comfortable recommending Flagship to you, but – as always – encourage you to enter your sales consultation reservedly and as an educated, informed merchant. So read up, then go ahead and check out Flagship Merchant Services!

Tom DeSimone

Tom DeSimone

Tom loves asking tough questions and getting straight answers, so he has a lot of fun calling payment processors for Merchant Maverick to cut through their smoke and mirrors and find the real deals. He has run a full-time editorial business from his home in New York’s Hudson Valley since 2010 and could not imagine a better job. When not busy writing and keeping credit processors honest, Tom enjoys backpacking in the mountains.
Tom DeSimone
Leave a comment

72 Comments

    Guy

    Thanks for posting this review (I asked about them a month ago)! I actually went with CDG but I had talks with Flagship and they were very helpful. Either one seems good.

    RatingNot Rated
    The Merchant Maverick

    Hi Guy!

    Sorry about the delay. Who would’ve thought gathering and researching data on the internet would be so time consuming. :)

    I also had a few other requests in the pipeline, so I couldn’t get to Flagship sooner. I hope everything works out with you and CDG. It’s a bit early right now, but at some point, I’d love to hear how your experience with them plays out.
    http://www.merchantmaverick.com/reviews/cdg-commerce-review/

    RatingNot Rated
    A. McDaniel

    With all the bed experiences with Flagship Merchants why are their reviews good? Clearly the reviews are not coming from people like us that have actually tried to do business with them. This is why they can continue to steal from people!!! This is not acceptable and should not continue because small businesses are paying the price for people to get “kickbacks” by giving fraudulent companies like this great reviews.

    RatingNot Rated
    Amad Ebrahimi

    Thank you for the input A. McDaniel. Let me give an explanation of our rating that might help clarify things. We’ve read thousands of user complaints just like yours. We’ve also spent hours researching and reviewing most of the major credit card processors on the market today. Flagship is a very large processor so they will naturally have more complaints than the others. However, considering their size, their complaint count is much smaller than other processors of their same size. The important lesson in all of this is that it’s not just the sheer number of complaints that matters. It’s the number of complaints in relation to the size of the company.

    Additionally, Flagship is one of the only processors that does not charge an early termination fee which is a huge benefit, especially when most processors do charge one.

    With that said, we always monitor user reviews on our site, and if they get out of control, then we will adjust the Flagship rating accordingly.

    RatingNot Rated
    Cindy

    Hi,
    Now I concerned. In good faith, I just gave all my info to this company to get credit card processing ability, since the Top Ten Reviews website had such rave stats for them. Do I have reason to be concerned??? I can’t have this become a nightmare in my life. I am very anxious now.

    RatingNot Rated
    Merchant Maverick Admin

    Hi Cindy,

    I don’t think you should be worried. Just because they’re not a 5 star provider on my site, doesn’t mean that they are bad. I gave them a 4 out of 5, which is still pretty good. So long as you do your own due diligence, then you should be fine.

    From my experience, the two most important areas that you want to focus on are:

    1. What are all of my fees? Be sure to verify them on your contract.
    2. What is the contract duration, and cancellation fee? Usually found in the “Termination” section of your contract.

    Feel free to contact me if you have any specific questions.

    RatingNot Rated
    Cindy

    Merchant Maverick,
    Thanks for your very quick response and helpful, I might add! I just called my bank and asked them if the information I gave earlier today to Flagship Merchant (without naming any names) is legit and what they would require in order to get the processing started and they said yes. My bank might have a few different ways to get the account approved initially, she said, but what was asked of me wasn’t out the ordinary.
    I am feeling somewhat better so I can rest easier thru the weekend til Monday.
    Thanks much!

    RatingNot Rated
    Christopher

    I wanted to comment on the ripoffreport.com complaint. I started a correspondence with Flagship, but I got cold feet after reading the ripoffreport. I was asked why not go through with the application, and I thought Ross at flagship was worth an explanation as he did handle himself professionally.

    I wrote very bluntly about how the ripoffreport made me feel as a potential costumer. I mentioned that not responding to the complaint made me feel uneasy. I treated the info as “unchallenged allegations.” I stated that if the allegations were true, it made me worry for the type of treatment described.

    Moreover I pointed out that the complainant is allegedly unemployed.

    Ross pointed out that the claims made are not congruent with the BBB rating and the lack of complaints. He also cited our brief conversation where the non-charging of fees thing was not mentioned. To which, I must confess is a valid point (or if he did mention it, I don’t recall it).

    With that said, I would like to see flagship offer this guy a chance to produce a W-2 to show that he was unemployed. If so, I know that it is not Christmas, but I just feel for unemployed people. Because some unemployed people are entrepreneurs with no funding, I think that everyone with an interest in this website can relate to him.

    RatingNot Rated
    James Nielson

    As a business-owner, I know that there are PLENTY of people who just complain about anything, and that satisfied customers hardly ever bother to comment. Flagship/iPayment must have SOME satisfied customers, but I highly recommend that people pay attention to what ACTUAL customers are posting about them. I fell for “Top 10 Reviews” GLOWING review of them, and it cost me over $400 in duplicate charges that Flagship refused to refund, even when my credit union got involved.

    James Nielson
    The Fix, LLC
    Portland OR

    RatingNot Rated
    Seth S.

    Do not use flagship or first data who handles the backend processing for flagship. They will shut down your merchant account over any miniscule excuse they come up with (not knowing the last four digits of your new business’s tin). They will then keep your money for six months. Look up flagship and/or first data merchant services on ripoffreport.Com or just google them. Stay away!

    Rating11111
    Merchant Maverick Admin

    Thanks for the review Seth. I did the honor of removing the caps lock from your comments. I’m not a big fan of all caps. :)

    Out of curiosity, the account that Flagship shut down, is it the Child Custody site that you have as your web address? If so, I can tell you that those types of industry’s are always being scrutinized. Especially, by processor’s like FD. You may have some more luck going with a high risk provider. They’re used to dealing with your business model, and won’t freak out at the drop of a hat.

    RatingNot Rated
    Cliff Perkins

    First of all they started taking money early…of course they blame that on me even though I told them we would not actually be operating for weeks and I was just wanting to be prepared. Secondly they take more than they are supposed to out of my bank ( extra debit card fee and minimum balace fee even when minimum reached and a CD fee?) and then on what they do admit to being wrong about take several weeks to refund or rather it has been weeks and I am still waiting.

    RatingNot Rated
    Jay

    I’m told that by the Flagship rep that I have been in contact with that they also use iPayment as a processor in addition to First Data. As many reviews state, many users have had all sorts of horror stories with First Data and I want to stay as far away from them as possible. That being said, do you know about iPayment as a processor? I haven’t been able to dig too much up on them.

    Thanks for the great resource Mav!

    RatingNot Rated
    Merchant Maverick Admin

    Hi Jay,

    I’m actually working on a review of iPayment, so stay tuned.

    RatingNot Rated
    Vadim

    I had the same question. Searching iPayment seems to produce just as many complaints as for First Data. I also see iPayment in fact purchased a large portion of business from First Data. So it is not clear that there is any real difference between them.

    RatingNot Rated
    Ahmad

    I just signed up for a merchant account with flagship, and they did sent me a welcome letter via post to my address, including a CD (for Guide) and some other papers confirming my processing rates etc…

    The strange part is that i find “iPayment” logo on their welcome papers, Because actually i was thinking that they are a FirstData company.

    Anyways, I am still confused about if i should go with them or no. they just have some bad reviews (with no good reviews at all), and moreover “iPayment” have TONS of bad reviews.

    I do web hosting, i don’t want to get suspended by them like Seth said. and freezing my money for 6 month.

    Anybody can help? is there some more reviews about them? what do you guys recommend me? go with them or no?

    Thank a lot!

    RatingNot Rated
    Derek

    I have been going back and forth comparing Flagship with Chase PaymentTech. The service reps at both have been very helpful and surprisingly accomodating to all my questions. And both have dropped fees/rates to match the other. The big issue for me is that I have no experience in this part of business and tend to be skeptical of larger businesses like Chase – especially when they require such a lengthy contract. Flagship seems like they’ll treat you as less of a number and has no contract but can’t quite meet Chase’s lower monthly fees. They both rate rather high. How do you weigh the impact of the types of complaints each get? How often would you expect to need customer service contact? Should the First Data complaints be a big concern? And is a 3-year contract with Chase excessive?

    RatingNot Rated
    Thomas

    I am talking to flagship rep and he says no contract that i can go month to month is that true

    RatingNot Rated
    Merchant Maverick Admin

    Thomas,

    From what I know, Flagship does not have a contract, so you’ve most likely been told the truth. Always double check your agreement though.

    RatingNot Rated
    A. McDaniel

    That is the same thing I was told and then I was “under contract”. Flagship Merchants do whatever they want to whomever they want with no consequences.

    RatingNot Rated
    Florina Tan

    Flagship does not care about the service they provide. They sell you a package and your bank statement reflects something different. They are not good in responding to emails. They prefer to do sales and after you locked in with them, they brush you aside and tell you something different and explain that the additional charges, is due to when you activated the account, you did not check off some of the boxes. They do provide the best rates, but the best rates dont give you the best service. And when you get that additional charges, they have some way of telling you is protection program that just come into effect. There is always a story behind the additional charges.

    I have emails back and forth with them since I started my account, at this point, I am going with my own bank even the charges are higher, so I dont deal with the middle man

    RatingNot Rated
    Peter Hutnick

    Flagship does NOT provide 24/7 customer service and technical support. They are 9-7 Eastern Time Mon-Fri. Much of their literature states that they will provide a 24/7 phone number, but the number they provide is for a 3rd party card processing center that has NOTHING to do with Flagship.

    They are in the business of signing up merchants and abandoning them after the sign-up process.

    I couldn’t be more UNHAPPY with the service they promise, but don’t deliver.

    RatingNot Rated
    Damian K.

    Horrible!!! I have received so many extra fees, that all my profit is going to them. They forgot to mention a $99.95 yearly fee that they charge plus a security service you have to take and if you do not they charge you $19.95 every month until you do. Stay away for your own good.

    RatingNot Rated
    Thresa

    I do also get $99 fee (they didn’t tell at first) for annual compliance fee, plus $19.95 additional fee if you are not pci-compliance, means you don’t pass the security questionaire. I am relieved to switch to [name removed] now since they offer lower rates and no hidden/pci fees.

    RatingNot Rated
    Damian

    I found out that this PCI-Compliance fee of $99 is charged by every credit card processing company. The $19.95 fee they charged was for not filling out the form. When I did fill out they returned that $19.95 back to me.

    I called them today and they were actually very nice. Since my business is very small i was able to negotiate a better rates for myself. They were very helpful.

    I retract my previous statement that they are Horrible. They are actually not so bad :)

    RatingNot Rated
    Gail

    I used this merchant for our credit card processing and only after losing my business (and home) in a fire, including both retail and virtual terminal merchant account numbers, did I find out I wish I had gone with a different vendor. I didn’t have the contact info for the gentleman (a great guy) who handled the account setup and that I usually called with general questions, so when I needed to call to shut down the accounts after deciding to close the business, I called the 800 number listed at the top of the website. I figured that would at least get me in and they could re-direct my call to the appropriate department from there.

    The only information available to give was my name, social security number, and business info. The man I spoke with couldn’t have cared less about trying to help. When I said I didn’t have the merchant account numbers his first reaction was to tell me I didn’t have an account with them. After explaining that I must still have the account because I was still being charged, he disagreed because the charge wouldn’t show up as ‘Flagship,’ which was a ridiculous argument! I asked if he could at least get me contact info for authorize.net to help in some way and after saying they don’t do business with them, he gave me the number to call to cancel their virtual terminal linked to the Flagship account. If they don’t to business with them why did he have the number right in front of him?!?

    I hung up after bursting into tears. All I wanted was some help. I scoured old emails and found the application number from when we first applied for the accounts. I called back, got someone different who brought the accounts right up, without the application numbers mind you, and directed me to exactly who I needed to talk to.

    Overall, the service we’ve received from this company was good, but one bad apple ruins the bunch. We just lost our house, all our memories, and our business in a fire. The last thing I needed was a poor attitude from someone who’s job it is to help paying customers, and by poor attitude I mean flat out rude and unkind. It reflects poorly on the employee and on the company, because of that, I can’t recommend Flagship Merchant Service. If you’re considering them, keep looking.

    Rating11111
    Bobby Wheat

    Worst company you could ever possibly deal with. Absolutely horrible customer service. Hidden fees. They do not care about you as a client at all. DO NOT USE THIS COMPANY. FIND SOMEONE ELSE and save yourself a lot of frustration, time, and money.

    Rating11111
    Derrick Pugh

    I love flagship, and all they have done for me. Been with them for about 9months. Had a wireless credit card terminal with them for the first 3 months, and had an authorize.net gateway since month 3. My rep, [edited: name removed], is awesome.

    I have been happy with everything…except their use of ipayment as the processor. I HATE them so far. They don’t inform you about much. I have to call them on almost a monthly basis. They charge my bank account before I get the statement…and its never what I expect. After two months of goofiness, I called to see why it cost so much. I was informed of some pci compliance things. wasted a bunch of time getting compliant and getting monthly charges back to normal. Then, this month, they charged like $120. $100 more that “usual”. So, I call about a week after this change (waited a week cause that how long it took to get the statement in mail after they charged me). Their statements make NO sense to me until I get to the summary section: $20.xx in processing fees (the breakdown of “processing” fees I can’t understand cause that’s in the body of the statement which just looks like babble to me) and the $99 for additional fees*. that asterisk led me to a note saying “for an explanation of additional fees, call us at xxxxxxxxx”

    flagship: awesome
    authorize: nothing special. have called multiples times, and on 2 occasions my rep had no idea what she was saying, and I was transferred to someone who did (had problems accepting amex a few times).
    ipayment: customer service is awesome. you call, someone picks up, they ask for merchant id, they confirm your id, then ask what’s up. but that’s it…everything else sucks. what I don’t like about ipayment is their crappy statements that seem to be generated in excel1982 and their general lacking of the pertinent information. From what I’ve learned and gathered, ipayment is for bigdawg businesses processing more than the “measly” couple grand that I do each month…often less than a grand on bad months. it takes up way to much of my time just to make sure I save the $30 non-compliance fee. ipayment control panel has a login, the pci compliance has a whole other login, then there is another one that you need a login for. Can it just be built it?

    RatingNot Rated
    Jana shimley

    My first transaction with this company has been a Night Mare!! The customer service is terrible. I will be reporting them to the Better Business Bureau! If I did business like this company, I would not be in business anymore!

    RatingNot Rated
    Yury Reznik

    This is a scam just stole 5300 out of my account STAY AWAY REPORT THEM TO THE FTC OR FDIC

    Rating11111
    A. McDaniel

    Scam they are. Some people liked to be scammed, used, and stolen from. I am guessing that is the kind of people that are leaving such positive reviews for Flagship Merchants. The “little people” are the ones paying the price for companies like Flagship Merchants to take advantage and steal from others.

    RatingNot Rated
    Carl Mattson

    Account reps do not know what they are doing. I switched over from another company, and then was told, after the fact, that it would take 24 hours for my account to be activated. I was not told this in advance. Otherwise I could have gotten around this problem. They created a problem for me, but could not come up with a solution

    RatingNot Rated
    Carl Mattson

    At this time, I withdraw any complaints I have had with Flagship. Most of my complaints were caused by a misunderstanding on my part. Since I am a new customer, I will monitor their performance.

    RatingNot Rated
    A. McDaniel

    Did Flagship Merchants make things right with you? I would like to know what they did right for you to post such a complimenting review of them.

    RatingNot Rated
    Bob

    Flagship is so bad, I don’t where and what to say. Since I open account with them in May I am on the phone most of the time, no statement monthly fee so high, this is unreal it is night mare, customer service is joke, they hang up on me several times, [edited: name removed] so many names I don’t know all of those Crazy people I am dealing every day, what a mistake. I had Elavon for 15 yrs and I switch it to Flagship what the mistake. Guys Please believe and stay far a-way as far as you can because those are thief’s sick people. Each time I do the transaction I have to call them on the phone, it is phone line, some numbers I am typing going through my credit card machine each time. Do not repeat my mistake do not do any king of the business with them.

    RatingNot Rated
    Heather Caballero

    Just signed an application with flagship after painstaking month comparing processsors. I didn’t like that they wouldn’t send me a MPA up front like other company, but they had the best rates and seemed to be rated good on this site and others. I’m concerned about making a bad decision, but since they are month to month I figure I can always cancel. They claim they will use my PCI compliant certificate, no problem, no fees.

    RatingNot Rated
    Heather Caballero

    After signing an application online, my next email was with instructions on how to reprogram the terminal. I’m like, wait a minute, where’s the MPA?? They forwarded me a copy of the agreement, which had my digital signature placed on pages I’d never seen. Seems to be in order, but I’m not happy about that. How hard is it for me to review each page online and place the signature myself? We’ll see when I get the first statement..

    RatingNot Rated
    helen barone

    I would not recommend Flagship Merchant Services. I woud definitely charcterize this as a “BUYER BEWARE” company. The salesman I originally spoke with is exactly that…a stereotypical SALESMAN. He never outright lied to me, but he lied by omission which caused a problem for me and for my customer. The customer service department was like a box of chocolates….you never know what you’re gonna get. The only person who seemed to know what he was doing was Anthony in the risk department. So now I have no choice but to cancel my account and go to another company.

    RatingNot Rated
    Thomas Agema

    I would not recommend this company at all. They are helpful at first but when you don’t receive the funds in your account it’s like talking to a brick wall. I was also told at the beginning that my monthly fee would be $15.00 but it turned out to be $32.95. After I complained they told me it would drop to $20.00, of course it never did and they had excuses every time. This company is a joke! Oh and I still have money that wasn’t funded to my account. They are working really hard to figure out why(I’m sure of it). DON’T USE THEM!!

    RatingNot Rated
    Lisa Chang

    I would not recommend this company. I cancelled my merchant account after two months. I was not happy with their customer service at all. I process large amount of foreign credit cards and for some reason most of them would not go through. And I’ve tried different cards, lowering the amount swiped, have my customer call their bank in front of me to “unfreeze” a US transaction. Nothing worked…until they walk across the sweet and swipe the card at another merchant office.

    I had given my customer service representative the benefit of the doubt after emailing and leaving voicemail that he had a reason for not responding to a customer. But come to think of it, why would anybody want to having any dealings with me if I ignore request/inquiry for a week. But in the mean time, I did not hesitate to contact iPayment and Roam Data X to figure out the issue. iPayment representative was cordial and helpful. Roam Data X representative basically told me to go back to Flagship to get my answer.

    I am a reasonable person. If my representative had responded to me and frankly told me he doesn’t have an answer, referred me to somebody else, or just plain “tough”…I think I would have still given them a little more time so I can sort the issue out. But being un-responsive is not what anybody expect from a company who rely on continuation and referral of business.

    RatingNot Rated
    Taylor Standish

    I would not recommend this company. I went with Flagship based on your review and was very happy with how easy the set up process was and how friendly the customer service was at first, but it all went south from there very quickly. I have actually never dealt with a more frusterating company.

    My issues all started with my “account manager.” I had a trunk show the following week and needed my Roam Data swiper before then. In order to do this, he put my account at very low monthly maximum transacation amount, which I went over on my first day of sales. I would have told him that I needed a higher amount, had he ever told me I had this maximum. He was also suppossed to send me the Roam Pay swiper before my show, but it was late and arrived 2 days after my trunk show. Because I did not have my swiper, he told me to manually enter in my charges to my authorize.net account, and everything woudl be fine. NOT TRUE. Immediately following my trunk show my account was flagged for fraud and my funds were frozen. It was flagged because all my charges were the same (I ONLY HAVE ONE PRODUCT) and because I manually entered in data (Which was an order from my manager). At this point, my contact manager literally fell off the face of the earth. Over two weeks later, I STILL have not heard back from him after sending countless emails and leaving voicemails. The woman working in the risk department on my account also never returned my calls, ever. It took me calling probally 15 times in one day until I could speak to a supervisor, for them to get a hold of my contact in the Risk Department.

    At this point, the risk department explained that the hold up was because there were not phone numbers on the invoicse (WHICH WAS NOT TRUE), so she had to look these people up in the phone book. Are you crazy!? So I sent through a very neat and detailed excel with all of the necessary information. Still did not hear anything.

    At the same time, my account funds were being held becasue I went over my maximum, so I was trying to up my minimum. I recieved an email from the supervisor I was working with last week, that I was apprvoed. Only to find out yesterday that actually, no, he was wrong. Two weeks later, I still have not been approved.

    I have called and called and called to speak wtih supervisors trying to get my funds released. Finally last night the Risk deparmtent confirmed they were releasing my funds. (I will believe that when I see it).

    I have never dealt with a company that a)had such bad customer services and b) the employees had no idea what was going on, everyone told me different things and told me to speak with different departments.

    Needless to say, I am canceling my account as soon as the funds go into my bank and I am signing up for Chase Paymentech.

    I would not recommend this company to anyone. Had they been responsive and kept me up to date with the status of my funds, I would be okay with this. But they were not. They were quite the opposite.

    RatingNot Rated
    Dave Nuss

    Talk about gouging. These people are liars! I went through 4 months and was wondering where all these extra debits (ACH payments) were coming from. They were taking from 20% to 30% out of my sales (and that didn’t even include Authorize.Net’s fees which were reasonable). I made a commitment with them based on this website and am extremely disappointed. In a month, I had ~$550 in charges and their bill was ~$160 (~$120 was marked as “Additional Fees”)!! (the other months were similar 20%-30% munched from these jerks!)
    I was told I was low risk and no chargebacks were ever made. When I began to do my year-end accounting, I was scratching my head as to where all my money went. What am I paying for? Why the HIDDEN charges? Geez!

    Rating11111
    James Nielson

    First, let me point out that Flagship’s rating with the BBB has dropped (and will continue to, if you ask me). It’s not that easy for us “little people” to get ourselves heard, and corporations DO have their ways of keeping their image nice and shiny, but when you get on the wrong side of customers like me…

    I’ll spare everyone the maddening details, but I’d like to offer my experience with Flagship/iPayment. Basically, they double-billed me for MONTHS via my personal account as well as my business account. It took a while for ME (not them) to figure it out, so by the time I realized what was going on I was out $400+, and they were content to keep it. My credit union changed my account numbers to finally end the charges, but Flagship has fought the reversal of funds, and has not done anything to remedy the “error”, so they really are scum in my book.

    Regardless of how well researched any positive reviews of them might be, the truth is that “on-paper” research and journalism, although useful, does not equate to real-world experience.

    James Nielson
    The Fix, LLC
    Portland Oregon

    RatingNot Rated
    A. McDaniel

    I can verify everything that James is writing is accurate. I have had the exact same experience with them and I feel violated.

    RatingNot Rated
    Kenneth Goldberg

    Please beware of this company, as James Nielson states in his accurate and pointiest description of Flagship Merchant Service. I too have been a victim of the deceitful practices of this company. In short misrepresentation of fees from Account Representative [edited: name removed], lies about the time to post to my account from the same account representative and the fact that they are not the producer of merchant service at all that they use a poorly organized and miss directed servicer iPayment to carry forth the lies and thievery. To give this company 1 star is generous but provided because there is no contract knowing that I could get out and did in 2 weeks! Do not use Flagship Merchant Services or iPayment as your Credit Card service. Fore Warned Is Fore Told.

    Rating11111
    Janice Driver

    BEWARE. Flagship Merchant Services is TERRIBLE. They misrepresented their fees, until the final contract. Then, they did not wait for approval.

    They signed me up without my final consent and would not let me retract their mistake. It took me 4 phone calls and over 50 minutes on hold to find out that I needed to fax a form to withdraw from their service. Then, they withdrew $32.95 simply because they “cannot cancel my account until month’s end.” Then, they sent a threating letter about PCI Compliance where they want to withdraw $129.00 from my account.

    When I tried to speak with a manager, they refused. I finally had to cancel my bank account to prevent further withdrawals from theim. DO NOT USE THIS COMPANY. It cost much more than the $14.95 they advertise.

    I am surprised that Top Ten REviews endorses this company. It makes me wonder how these reviews are set.

    Rating11111
    A. McDaniel

    They are horrible!!

    Rating11111
    Nathan Hatcher

    TERRIBLE experience with FLAGSHIP MERCHANT SERVICES!! I am a farmer and I have a sporting goods store that I opened a few years ago that I work when I have slowed down after the harvest season which sells everything from camping supplies to firearms. I had done some internet research and came across Flagship because of their high rating. I am extremely busy with the farm and had my girlfriend call them to ask several question and get some information for me. Well, they seemed very helpful with her as she explained what business I had and made sure to let them know that firearm sales were part of the business. They told her “no problem” and she returned with lots of fees, transaction percentages, etc.. for me to study. After I had decided to go through with them, I contacted the representative via email to further discuss opening an account with them, which I explained that I was very busy working from dusk till dawn and didn’t have time to sit on a phone going through an application and speaking with someone at that time. I requested that he send me written documentation of their policies, and an application form or a list of needed/required info for their application process so that I could jot down everything when I could and then call them back after I had all the info needed to speed up the process. I received a quick reply with NO policy attachment or information on what was needed for the application! I was just told the application was “easily” done over the phone and only took “10 minutes”. Well, that didn’t sit well with me because I just explained that I couldn’t speak over the phone at that time! (It’s hard to talk on a phone when you are covered in sweat, dirt, oil, mud, grease and the sounds of loud diesel tractor motors and pumps running around you!) So, I sent a quick text message to my girlfriend to find out what was needed. Apparently they do not like to put ANYTHING in writing because they told her over the phone what was needed for the application. She emailed what they said to me and I jotted down all info later that evening and returned it to her. She called them back and did the application process and was “APPROVED”, they just needed a voided business check for the account info to link to. Now this is where it gets good! I immediately started getting telemarketer calls for credit card machines, etc! I got several after the application process and the next day! During this time, I had a guy building my website and trying to post item for sale. I had my girlfriend call Flagship to let them know she had a copy of the voided check and to let them know I was unhappy about the selling on my info to telemarketers and to take me off any lists that I may have been on. They LIED to her saying that they do not do that. (REALLY!? Maybe that’s why they wont give you any written documentation of their policies!) Well apparently she pissed them off. They called her back and claimed they went to my website, which is “under construction” being rebuilt and since they saw “guns” they could not “approve” me and would not do business with me!! (Wait, what!? I explained to them up-front, guns were part of my business. I was APPROVED the day before! And now since I expressed they were not allowed to sell my information to telemarketers, they are denying their services now!? WOW!) As stated before me, DO NOT USE FLAGSHIP MERCHANT SERVICES!!!! They are a joke and complete waste of time! I hope my experience helps save someone else this same hassle and headache!

    RatingNot Rated
    Nathan Hatcher

    OH, and I forgot to add, they never ONCE mentioned anything about “PCI Compliance”!! Which if you are not aware of and and do not have, they charge you something like $90+ each month!!

    RatingNot Rated
    A. McDaniel

    My exact experience with them!

    Rating11111
    A. McDaniel

    Flagship Merchants are taking advantage of businesses and they need to be stopped.

    Rating11111
    A. McDaniel

    I am a non-profit with very little funds. I closed my account in 12/12. I get my bank statement today and I have been charged three separate fees totaling $150.00 I am told that I had two accounts with them and only one was closed. They are refusing to refund me of the charges. If you want to be taken advantage of this is the kind of company you want to do business with. Who is going to explain to a burn survivor that is requesting medical help? Not Flagship Merchants.

    Rating11111
    Jeff Grinstead

    I just cancelled my service with Flagship Merchant Services and Roam Pay. When I signed up for the service, about 5 months ago, the salesman quoted me a $7.95 per month fee (acceptable) with a 1.5% processing fee per transaction (also acceptable) and no lock in long contract (very attractive). I let the salesman know that I was just starting up and that I wanted the ability to take charge cards, but sales would likely be sporadic and small. There was no mention of a minimum volume for transactions… Surprise! Over the past two months I have paid $25 per month in “Minimum Discount” fees PLUS the $7.95, and this month another $7.95 was added for an Internet Access (Gateway) Fee (notification received Sept 6 regarding this addition to my bill. I called customer service (on hold for 10+ minutes) last month and the service rep explained that the “Minimum Discount Fee” would be charged any month that I didn’t use the service. So I figured with two transactions over the past 30 days, I wouldn’t be subject to the minimum $25 fee… I guess it just doesn’t really work that way! SO, for my $55 in transactions over the past two months, I have paid $73.65 in fees to Flagship Merchant Services. Needless to say, the economics just didn’t make sense… I’d be ahead if I had just given those services away for free. Subscriber beware! Especially if you are not going to be doing a huge amount of transactions.

    RatingNot Rated
    SBrose

    First transaction is taking over 5 business days and still ‘processing’. Authorize.net went without a hitch, ipayments halted processing demanding documentation of the transaction. I had to send them my customers PO and my company’s Invoice. Now they want 3 months of bank statements! It is not uncommon for us to have a contract requiring start-up funds, draws at milestone completions, and final payment. Now they are saying they won’t allow the same customer to charge more than 5K per month!. Peanuts for construction jobs. As a construction company I am not sure they are the provider for us. Am shopping for a better solution.

    RatingNot Rated
    Kevin Van Liere

    Flagship was terrible for me. They kept my first payment of $2300 for a month to confirm that it was a legitimate transaction. They wouldn’t call the person that was trying to pay and they wouldn’t call their bank – they would only use a fax and wait for a response. Additionally I was promised a $7.95 monthly fee plus the usual transaction fee. I had set up the account clearly explaining that I would rarely use the service. Last month I paid $62.95 and I didn’t use it at all. They wouldn’t refund the charges.

    Rating11111
    Margaret Lois Jansen

    In August I discovered that Flagship Merchant Services had set up an account in my name that was fraudulent. My business name and EIN had been stolen and combined with the SSN of an 83 year old woman. I notified them immediately and received in return copies of the application. Numerous red flags, as in the birth date was 1929 and the names for the signature and typed names were different. Over $3600 was run through this fraudulent account that I notified them about. Now they are trying to collect that money from me and have sent the account to Collections. They knew it was fraudulent because I had told them and sent them the Police Report I had made…and now, to cover their incompetence in setting up without verifying , they are trying to collect from me. Fail. I don’t think there is a low enough rating. I question their ethics, if they even know what the word means.

    Rating11111
    Jon Perry

    I enlisted Flagship Merchant Services to set-up credit card processing for a charity event where 100% of monies raised go directly to needy children. As such, credit card processing fees would be paid separately so fees were critical. Being a lawyer, I knew what questions to ask and attempted to have ALL fees clearly deliniated. Every single statement made to me regarding fees was a lie. The fees were higher, there were undisclosed fees such a “monthly report fee,” and then a $125 charge described simply as an “additional fee.” The company also created “security issues” and refused to deposit credit card charges for more than 20 days. I am sure they float other merchant’s money in a similar fashion and collect interest on the withheld money. No merchant who reviews and understands their statements could EVER recommend this company.

    Rating11111
    Jeff Henderson

    I’ve never taken the time before to write a complaint about a company. First time for everything!

    I don’t think I’ve ever dealt with a company with such terrible customer service. They don’t care about you as a customer… in my experience. I called to complain about the surprising items on my bill – which were NEVER mentioned to me by the sales guy who reviewed what I would be paying each month. They’re response? “It’s in the contract sir. You signed the contract!” I explained that I may not have read all the fine print – and that’s clearly my fault… but I gave some credence to what the sales guy said – and just accepted it as accurate. Boy was I wrong! One item was a fee they told me I had to pay because the IRS required it. I found out by a big bank I called that this is a flat LIE.

    So, after getting nowhere with her, I asked to just speak to the manager. When I got to her – without hearing my story she said “it was clearly in the contract and you signed it.” I tried to share my story – nicely – and she just talked right over me. I stopped, she finished, I started again and she talked right over me. It was unbelievable.
    So, I canceled my service. I was told it would be canceled in 30 days after I filled out some paperwork. Believing I had through Jan to still use the service…I didn’t get around to setting up the next one. I tried to run a few transactions and it didn’t work. I called t hem back and said “I though I had through January??” She said, “Nope. We canceled your account on the 8th.” I explained the last person said I could use it through the month, etc. and she just said NOTHING. Like the “cold hearted Orb that rules the night” (Moody Blues). I swear these people, the training, the policies, the service is seriously pathetic. I hope they lose all their customers because no one should be allowed to conduct business this way.

    There. I got it off my chest.

    Pffft.

    Rating11111
    Colette Salter

    These guys are awful if you are in consulting or high dollar low volume sales. I am a consultant and get paid via relatively few transactions per year. Occasionally I’ve been asked if I take credit cards. As an effort at customer service I opened this account to try it out.

    To start I was approved for a relatively low max transaction value making it of limited use for my business. The agent I spoke to was a good salesperson and convinced me to try it out any way even though I saw it of little use. When the bills started arriving, the charges ping ponged all over the place and included a statement fee of $7.95 which I had not been informed of. A few months in the annual PCI fee of $99. Then a mysterious $30 fee was added on.

    I had never actually logged into set up the account and decided to cancel. When I called customer service person offered me $75 refund on the PCI fee and a lower monthly fee of $7.95, no statement fee. I thought this was reasonable for a potential value to customers.

    Three months later they were still charging me $37.95 a month. I called to cancel and they claimed it was a PCI non compliance fee because I had not filled out a form on their website. I asked them to suspend service immediately.

    They never did and claimed they needed my signature first and had sent me an email requesting this. The next time I checked my account I see they have continued to charge me $37.95/month for a service I have never used.

    Today I spoke to [Name Removed] in customer service and he told me it was reasonable for them to charge us the PCI non compliance fee as I was advised monthly on my statement.

    Folks – in the middle of the bill is a “Reminder” that merchants must be PCI compliant. It does not say anywhere that my account is NOT compliant. In the fees section it posts a $30 fee which is described as **Additional Fees.

    When I complained that this is not clear and poor practice, Brian told me I was properly charged and “declined” to offer a refund. He said it was part of the fees for having an account. When I asked what they do with these PCI fees he said it simply goes to them. His attitude was well, that’s too bad for you, its in the fine print. They were so solicitous and helpful in the sales process and so dismissive in the customer service process.

    Talk about a rip off – $7.95 for a service and $30 additional FEES per month totaling over $500 in 10 months for processing exactly 0 transaction. I’m sure this works better if you run a pizza shop or in retail, but think carefully and don’t believe the sales hype. They get you in the fees.

    Rating11111
    Sean McEvoy

    All PCI related fees are billed from their credit card processor I-Payment. PCI/DSS stands for “Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards” and it is a Visa/MasterCard requirement that all businesses that accept credit cards are PCI/DSS compliant, keeping their customer’s credit card information safe from being compromised. The PCI fee of $99 was disclosed during the application process with this merchant, and was in the PDF that they received upon completion of the application. In the application it said in the “Schedule of Fees” portion: “A PCI Compliance and Data Security fee will be applied on an annual basis.” The merchant application also states that a PCI non-action fee will be assessed monthly if PCI compliance requirements are not met. Page 1 of the merchant statement that is sent out monthly refers our customers to a site where they can complete a brief PCI compliance certification. Although our organization feels that the PCI-DSS related fees were disclosed and communicated to this merchant, we wish to inquire with iPayment regarding refunding at least a portion of the PCI fees that were billed. However, we were unable to locate this customer in our system based on the information in this post. If the customer replies to this post with the business name they applied under, we will be happy to accommodate.

    RatingNot Rated
    Peter

    Dear Tom,

    How can you give Flagship Merchant Services 4 stars? I’m confused…most of the reviews are scathingly bad. My own experience was similar…undisclosed and almost random fees that have no explanation and poor justification. I terminated my agreement with them in Oct 2013 and was charged the $99 compliance fee on 12-31-13 to an account we thought was finished…thus causing an overdraft situation and an additional $32 fee. When terminating with Flagship, I expressly asked if there were any other fees or charges and they said no and that they would take care of everything. My mistake…hopefully it won’t be ongoing. I suggest you reconsider your 4 star rating of Flagship Merchant Services….a very undeserved ranking in my opinion. Have you actually used their service?

    RatingNot Rated
    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Peter,

    I absolutely understand your frustration and confusion here. Very recently (a few days ago), I gave our Flagship review a long overdue update. At that point, I lowered the rating from 4.5 to 4 stars, citing a number of recurring complaints that came up with alarming regularity in 2013 especially. If you check out my introduction to this review, you’ll see my list of qualms and the overall ambivalence and hopefulness with which I lowered their rating by only half a star instead of by more. The main reason I decided to do this comes from Flagship’s formerly good reputation and reliable service, which is clearly in serious jeopardy at this point. You can bet that their rating will continue to sink in the coming weeks and months if their business practices do not improve. We have personally contacted Flagship to let them know how we’d like to see them improve, and we anxiously await their implementation (hopefully) of these changes. I will be taking your comment and the many other comments here and elsewhere on the web under careful consideration over the coming weeks.

    Thank you so much for your time and your input, Peter. It has not reached deaf ears.

    All the best,
    Tom

    RatingNot Rated
    anthony 's appliance service

    Beware of this company (flagship merchants) this company is terrible. I have a very successful small appliance business and i went online and found out that flagship is number one . I don’t understand how in the world they were one unless this is there website claiming this. Because after using them for only four months they are on the bottom of my list. When i sign up with Nick of flagship merchants he tells me that make sure i have plenty of money in my checking account. This should of send red flags up.THIS COMPANY NICKLE AND DIMES YOU WITH FEES. NOT small fees but BIG FEES. It cost me alot with this company and i’m a little guy and just want to save you the time and the fees . STAY AWAY FROM COMPANY.

    Rating11111
    Sean McEvoy

    We’re sorry to hear of this customer’s negative experience with Flagship. The customer contacted our company, and was then contacted by an account representative who went over the rates and fees of our merchant services. The customer then provided their personal and propietary information to the representative to prefill an electronic application and begin the approval/activation process. The application was sent over for the customer to review at which point they are able to do an “e-signature” with their mouse and they then answer security questions based on their personal history pulled from public records. The full agreement was available to print out via PDF. They were also sent a copy of the agreement and program guide on a CD with more details on their live, active merchant account. Further, the merchant was sent an email explaining when the billing would begin. However, since this customer was unhappy with their services, we have requested a courtesy refund of $130.80 from iPayment, the processor. Upon refund approval, the funds should deposit into the customer’s checking account in the next 7 to 10 business days.

    RatingNot Rated
    John Nedham

    The absolute worst experience I have encountered. Was sold an incorrect terminal for processing from sales rep [Name Removed] back in February for $149.00 & a $25.00 shipping fee he neglected to inform me of, & have been charged for three months worth of fees. Total spent right now is $249.14 & have not even been able to accept any credit cards. Finally received a refund of $147.00 after sending terminal back less shipping. Customer service is anything but SERVICE. Nothing else to do except to share this on the internet

    Rating11111
    Sean McEvoy

    We regret this customer’s negative experience. All of our credit card machines will process through an analog phone line or ethernet connection. Our understanding is that a few weeks after the customer received their terminal, he attempted to process via a system that was neither a standard phone line or internet connection. The account was cancelled per the customer’s request, and his card was refunded minus a 15% restocking fee per the FAQ section of our website. Based on this complaint, we will take it a step further to ensure a more amicable separation of the relationship. The remaining $26.10 has been returned to the customer’s credit card today. As well, a refund request for their monthly fees, totalling $73.85 should deposit into the customer’s checking account in the next 7 to 10 business days.

    RatingNot Rated
    Kevin Annis

    STAY AWAY from flagship they get just enough info to start dinging your bank account when you are looking for a provider and start billing you even when you dont go with them.
    and try to get it cancelled thats impossible and dont bother trying to geta refund. They say they cant stop it without written consent but they sure got it started fast. Really a bad choice if you pick this company>

    Rating11111
    Sean McEvoy

    We regret that this merchant did not fully understand all of the terms of the agreement. The customer contacted our company, and was then contacted by an account representative who went over the rates and fees of our merchant services. The customer then provided their personal and proprietary information to the representative to prefill an electronic application and begin the approval/activation process. The application was sent over for the customer to review at which point they are able to do an “e-signature” with their mouse and they then answer security questions based on their personal history pulled from public records. The full agreement was available to print out via PDF. They were also sent a copy of the agreement and program guide on a CD with more details on their live, active merchant account. Further, the merchant was sent an email explaining when the billing would begin. However, since there was clearly a misunderstanding, we will try to accommodate. The account has been closed, and we have requested a refund of $309 in charges, which should deposit to the customer’s checking account in the next 7 to 10 business days.

    RatingNot Rated
    F. Butler

    we highly regret using Flagship Merchant. Starting using there service in 2012. No problems with terminal then but paying to much for monthly fee for the amount of use. Recently we have been working on accepting the government fuel card (WEX). Took over a month to get approved then shuffled around from one agent to another that knows absolutely nothing. Then after several reprogramming of terminal it now will not work at all. Loss of income now. And they could care less. They have your banking account number and will continue to pull from it even if there service cannot be used. They now want me to buy a new terminal at 400.00 as the one they sent me in 2012 they no longer support. They also told me that they know nothing about the set up and use of this terminal with the (WEX) card. This card is used for government fuel purchase. Sorry I ever did business with them. Please search for a merchant very closely

    Rating11111
    SEAN MCEVOY

    We regret this customer’s negative experience. Upon initial boarding of the account, we were not aware of this customer’s needs to accept government fuel cards issued by Wright Express. Wright Express applications can take up to a month for approval in some instances. They also require specific equipment that is more expensive. In regards to the equipment charges, it was not a deliberate attempt to make more money. Our terminals sold at cost, so no profit is made from the sale of equipment. However, as a courtesy, a refund has been issued for $200 towards the cost of the terminal.

    RatingNot Rated
    Rindy Engleman

    These guys have been a nightmare since day one. I was promised lower fees that my previous merchant, but was surprised with not only higher rates, but TRIPLE higher rates. Then when I inquired, [Name Removed], our account rep, stopped answering my e-mails and phone calls. Now just recently we had a huge issue with their ROAMPAY network. Their whole system crashed, which cased several of our transactions to be submitted 2-3 times per transaction. Here is the kicker, on our end all of our transactions show they only processed once. Now we are being forced to payback $1100 that we didn’t realize we had acquired because they pay in lump sums without regard to transaction. We are a small business and that is a lot of money for us to come up with. They said they would “work with us” by just taking all the incoming transactions to pay it off, this leaves us with a problem of not having any future income for weeks to run our business. I’m completely fed up. We typically give companies the benefit of the doubt when stuff goes wrong but after all this…..

    Rating11111
    Jeff Hilton

    Two months ago I cancelled service and still getting $32.95 taken out of my account each month. I called twice and they assured me it was cancelled and no more charges would appear. This month I called and the CS rep said it would take 30 days from the day it was cancelled to show up BOGUS, I used their service for about 3 months last year and they are not the #1 CC processing company that everyone seems to make them out to be. Obviously the reviews are not from someone that has actually dealt with them. They told me “unfortunately we can’t refund you the fees associated with activating an account”. BOGUS again, the sales rep told me if I didn’t use the service there would be no fees so go ahead and get your application in and get the account approved and then if you decide to use our service you’ll get our great rates if not, no harm done. BOGUS again…..’nuf said.

    Rating11111

Leave a Reply

Rating

Comment moderation is enabled. Your comment may take some time to appear.
Please read the "User Review and Comment Policy" before posting.