Flint Mobile Review

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Date Established
2011
Location
Redwood City, CA

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Overview:

[Great news! Flint now can be used to process Discover and American Express transactions too. Another big step in the right direction. Existing users, update your app!]

If you’re looking for a standalone mobile processing account, you’ve no doubt been enticed by these words, often followed by an exclamation mark: Free card reader! Of course the reader doesn’t exactly come for free. It has a production cost, and the processor will pass that cost along to you through rates and fees. If you don’t process enough for them to at least break even on the cost of the reader, then the processor has lost money on you. (Note: Processors do not like to lose money on you.) 

But why do you really need a card reader, anyway? Long before the free swiper protocol began, apps like Inner Fence allowed merchants to process cards by simply typing the card information in, as almost all apps still do. Well, since swiped transactions are more secure, they will usually cost less to process than a keyed-in card. Plus, it’s just more convenient and quicker to swipe than to type. But Flint Mobile may be changing this for US-based businesses…

Flint doesn’t offer a swiper. Not a free one, not a paid one, just no reader whatsoever. So right off the bat they significantly reduce their cost for setting up your account. This gives Flint the ability to offer lower rates – and they seem to do just that, with a ridiculously low rate for processing debit alongside a very fair credit rate. No “non-qualified” rates or additional fees to worry about. To solve the convenience problem of having to key-in card info, the Flint app allows you to use your phone’s camera to scan the card numbers. Bam. Done. Easy as taking a cute cat picture, but probably more lucrative.

Other providers also offer this camera scan technology, but none price these transactions as fairly as Flint Mobile. Flint can compete with the best standalone, pay-as-you-go mobile processors out there. If you process a lot of debit transactions, Flint will save you money over any other similar mobile processor I’m currently aware of. If you (like me) are not crazy about having to keep track of another piece of low-grade, semi-disposable hardware, then giving up the swiper might even come as a relief to you.

The Flint Mobile app is perhaps the most usable, sensible, speedy, reliable mobile processing app I have ever used. During my testing I had absolutely no problems, and was running transactions at a much faster speed than other similar apps. It might take a couple tries to get your scanning settings set up the way you like, but Flint makes it easy and intuitive to customize this. I had no trouble at all. My one complaint is that they do not provide any means for printing a paper receipt. It would be really nice to see this feature implemented.

I’m also super impressed by Flint’s new “Sell Online” feature. This is among the easiest to use and most versatile means for collecting online payments I’ve seen in recent memory. The new feature allows you to take any item from your inventory and sell it online by simply hitting the “Sell Online” button. You can then edit the description and even customize the button text, and then sell either through a hosted payment page that Flint automatically generates (it’s very attractive), or you can copy and paste the code into your website to make the button appear.

They have a moderate default weekly processing limit, but you can easily increase this by providing Flint with a little more information about your business. End of the day, it’s in Flint’s best interest to have reliable merchants processing as much moolah as possible. They are aware of this, trust me.

As of mid-2014, I’m ready to give Flint Mobile a perfect 5-star rating. While the app won’t replace a full-feature tablet POS, Flint offers plenty of valuable features (integrated QR coupons, invoicing, customizable receipts, etc.) and executes service flawlessly, no flimsy card reader required. This is an honest company providing a sensible, surefire way to accept payments and grow your clientele. Definitely take a look!

Products and Services:

  • Mobile credit and debit processing: Unlike Square users, merchants using Flint get their own Merchant ID number (MID). This may contribute to overall better account stability. (Good news!)
  • App2App Connect: New for spring 2015, Flint offers a feature that allows you to integrate your business app with Flint Payments. For instance, maybe you have a customer relationship management app where you enter your customer’s contact and order information. Now you can insert code that allows your app and the Flint app to communicate with each other, and you can charge customers and record information without having to enter data multiple times or toggle back and forth. Both iOS and Android integration is supported with solid documentation. They have made the code as lightweight and easy to execute as possible while maintaining a high level of security. I’m really excited to see what all of you app developers do with this!
  • Sell Online: New for fall 2014, Flint has expanded user options for card-not-present sales. This feature is a game-changer. I can’t even tell you how impressed and in love with this I am. This is among the easiest, lowest-cost, cleanest, most versatile, and overall most effective means for collecting online payments I’ve seen in recent memory. This feature allows you to take any item from your inventory and sell it online by simply hitting the (aptly titled) “Sell Online” button. You can then edit the description and even customize the button to say whatever you want (like “Buy It Now” or “Donate Here” or “Give Me Your Money”). In terms of how you sell, you have two options. First, you can do it through a hosted payment page that Flint automatically generates (it’s very attractive). Or you can copy and paste the code into your website to make the button appear. It works amazingly well. I’m almost giddy with impressed-ness.
  • Real time online reporting: Flint offers a sleek and feature-filled merchant portal, which includes access to customer contact information to send offers and coupons, as well as easy export of info for syncing with your bookkeeping software.
  • QuickBooks integration: Links to your QuickBooks Online account and will automatically sync hourly (or can be synced manually with a click). This service allows you to track customers by email, sort transactions based on a number of useful attributes, and a lot more. I love QuickBooks Online and am glad to see integration offered. (Especially because I don’t care for Inuit GoPayment.)
  • Mobile app: Basically the entire Flint Mobile service exists within their app, available for most smartphones and tablets. The app has very impressive ease of use, with controls more reliable, intuitive, and commonsensical than most processing apps on the market today. It has all the essential features you need, without trying to integrate any complicated inventory management or other such features I often see halfheartedly crammed into processing apps. Features include:
    • Multi-user capabilities: The account owner can allow up to nine sub-account users conduct transactions under their account, each with a unique login and password. This is great for growing businesses that want to be able to take payments from multiple locations at the same time.
    • Invoicing: The invoicing service offered through the PayPal Here app is a big draw, so I’m glad to see Flint offering some competition here. This is a very well executed feature, allowing your customers to easily and securely pay invoices. These payments will be processed using the same rates that you receive normally. The automated reminders sent to customers with unpaid invoices are a nice touch. You can do invoicing in-app or at your computer.
    • Customized receipts: Make your receipts a little flashy with a logo, business info, coupons and additional notes. You can also make access to social media easy by including a link to post Facebook reviews right on the receipt. You should note, however, that you cannot print a paper receipt with the Flint app.
    • QR-based coupons (iOS only): Flint Mobile allows you to create and issue coupons, attaching them to email receipts. Customers can save these coupons via Apple Passbook or email. This is actually a fairly sophisticated program to offer for free, especially considering you can use the merchant portal to keep track of issued and redeemed coupons. Plus the app sends customers an automated reminder before the deal expires (nice!). There are no extra fees for this service. Really impressive, and a great way to add value.
    • Multiple item transactions: Users can preset tips, sales taxes and custom memos, and add multiple items to a transaction. Increase quantities with a single tap! (I love this!) You don’t have inventory functionality comparable to full-service POS tablet-based apps, but Flint gets the job done.
    • Dollar amount discounts: Many apps make discounts really annoying to apply. Flint handles this feature flawlessly. I might like to see a percentage discount option in the future.
    • Logging cash and checks: While you can’t deposit checks with the app (like you can with PayPal Here), you can track cash and checks for a more complete cash register experience.
    • Security: I’m taking a moment to bring this up because I’d imagine many merchants are wary of the camera scan function in terms of data safety. Well, Flint has this to say:

Flint has integrated with industry leading financial services and infrastructure companies to provide a reliable, secure and scalable platform. Sensitive data is protected according to PCI DSS and other industry guidelines and all connections are encrypted for maximum security. The Flint app securely scans just the main card number. No card data or images are stored on the phone. Standard card verification info and a touch screen signature are required to complete transactions.

Furthermore, on the topic of security, Flint gives you the option to use their Mask Card Scan feature. Enabling this feature will block out the middle numbers of the card on your screen, as seen in the image below, courtesy of Flint.com. For wary customers, this can provide an added sense of security.

flint-card-scan

You can find a full and up-to-date list of support devices on the Flint FAQ. In general, all iOS devices are supported. Many Android devices are too, but the coupon feature doesn’t carry over. Regardless, the app remains well-liked among Android users, who overall rate it at over 4 stars on Google Play.

Compatibility:

This is the compatibility information directly from Flint’s site:

Flint is currently available in the U.S. for iPhone and Android users.

Apple iOS Device Compatibility
Your Apple device must be running iOS 6.0 or higher.

  • iPhone 3GS
  • iPhone 4
  • iPhone 4S
  • iPhone 5
  • iPhone 5S
  • iPhone 5C
  • iPad
  • iPad mini
  • iPod Touch

Downloading the iPad App: In the App Store, Flint is listed as an “iPhone app,” so to get the app on your iPad you must change the default search criteria to include iPhone apps. After that, you can install and use the app on your iPad just as you would on an iPhone.

Android Device Compatibility Supported
Android devices must have: Android 4.0 or higher and access to Google Play Here are a few examples of the Android devices supported today:

  • HTC One
  • Samsung Galaxy S4
  • Motorola Moto X
  • LG Nexus 4

Fees and Rates:

The Flint fee structure is incredibly simple and transparent – the exact opposite of Intuit GoPayment. Flint truly has only two rates:

  • Debit transactions: 1.95%
  • Credit transactions: 2.95%

That’s it. No per transaction fees, no non-qualified fees, no surcharges of any kind. About half of all card purchases are done with debit, so you should take that 1.95% rate very seriously. It’s a damn good deal in the mobile processing market.

In Flint’s welcome email, they disclose the following standard limits:

  • Max per transaction Scanned: $1000.00
  • Max per transaction Typed: $250.00
  • Max per week: $3000.00
  • Max per invoice: $250.00
  • Total invoice limit: $1000.00

If you’re willing to provide a little more information about your business, Flint can substantially increase your limits. Just fill out their Merchant Information Request form. This process includes a so-called “soft credit check,” which allows Flint to check out your credit without affecting your credit score. Since having too many inquiries on your credit report can lead to a downgraded score, I sincerely appreciate Flint’s decision here. If you don’t want your personal credit to be evaluated (if you’re not the business owner, for instance), then you can use the Business Information Request form to the same end.

Overall, I believe Flint does an outstanding job of avoiding unnecessary account freezes or funding holds. There are few (if any) complaints regarding this to be found online, as opposed to the hundreds (thousands?) of such complaints filed against competitors like Square or Intuit GoPayment.

Unlike other mobile processors, Flint is required to submit a 1099-K tax form for you regardless of your processing volume. This is a trade off you have to make in order to secure a more stable processing account. While this shouldn’t be an issue for most, I’d like to see Flint do a better job of disclosing this and explaining it to merchants.

Contract Length and Early Termination Fee:

No termination fees whatsoever! Also, being a pay-as-you-go service, Flint will not charge you if you become inactive. No monthly fees, no monthly minimums, ever. Simple as that.

Sales and Advertising Transparency:

You’ll find absolutely crystal clear advertising transparency with Flint. They have very simple rates and fees, so explaining it doesn’t take much effort on their part. Since Flint doesn’t rely on sales agents to board merchants, sales transparency isn’t a big issue.

I would maybe like to see a more prominent disclosure of their 7-day default processing limit ($3,000) and policy of holding funds over the limit for 30 days – but I can also say that they are doing a better job than a lot of other providers in terms of making sure their users know about the limits and working with merchants to ensure consistent service.

Also, like many mobile processors, Flint offers instant approval and setup. This means that they give you access to their account first, and ask questions later. While this practice is the industry standard, can lead to account terminations and freezes for high-risk merchants early on. But again, Flint is really doing a great job of avoid any issues with this.

Customer Service and Technical Support:

Square set the bar pretty low for mobile processing customer service, so needless to say Flint goes above and beyond that standard. I’d even say that Flint exceeds the support service offered by PayPal Here (one of my favorite mobile services) – maybe not in quantity, but almost definitely in quality.

You can get phone and email support during business hours (7am-5pm Pacific, Monday-Friday). I’d like to see a more extensive knowledge base replace their small FAQ, but I do believe Flint provides an acceptable amount of information to help users solve basic problems on their own. The simplicity and elegance of their services are perhaps suited to a diminutive self-service support page.

If you’ve used Flint’s customer service, let us know how it went!

Flint Mobile Negative Reviews and Complaints:

You can see two complaints for Flint filed with the BBB in the past three years, one of which is from back in 2012. While there are no details provided for the older complaint, it’s marked as a “delivery issue,” which seems very strange to me since Flint does not deliver any hardware. The newer complaint was quickly and amicably resolved, and seems to have been a bank account issue.

Aside from that, you’ll have a hard time digging up any dirt on the rock-solid services provided by Flint. (Pun intended.) They’re pretty new, so things could change. I have a good feeling about these guys, though.

If you’ve had first-hand experience with Flint Mobile, please leave us your independent, unbiased review in our comments section.

Positive Reviews and Testimonials:

The few independent reviews available for Flint Mobile all praise the service. I’m also impressed that Dharma Merchant Services uses a Flint affiliate service for their “Dharma Lite” platform. I have all the respect in the world for Dharma as a merchant services provider, so their trust in Flint comes as high praise.

Reviewers of the Flint app also have good things to say, consistently rating it four and five stars in the App Store and on Google Play. See the Products and Services heading above for a full list of features.

Once again, YOU keep our reviews great! If you’ve had first-hand experience with Flint Mobile, please leave us your independent, unbiased review in our comments section.

Final Verdict:

It’s official: I’m ready to ditch the dongle. While PayPal Here and Square still have a few features Flint hasn’t carved out yet, I’m optimistic for this industry newcomer. They’re providing fantastic service and a ton of useful features, with more arriving every update. If Flint is profitable, you can expect them to be a mobile processing frontrunner in coming years.

While time will tell if Flint can hang on in this incredibly competitive and complex industry, they’ve proven at least some staying power in the last three years. Their integrated coupons and invoicing add even more value to this already valuable and fairly priced service. For many small businesses, Flint is a perfect mobile processing solution. I like the service they offer, and – just as importantly – I like the company as a whole. It’s quick/easy/risk free to give them a shot. I recommend that you do! Just be aware that there is no receipt printing capability.

The icing on the cake? Flint’s “Sell Online” feature. The new feature allows you to take any item from your inventory and sell it online (either through a button on your site or through a customized payment page) by simply hitting the “Sell Online” button. I also like that all online sales are recorded separately, so you don’t have to dig them out when it comes time to ship merchandise.

Need a full-service merchant account instead? Check out CDGcommerce for an ultra low-cost option, or Dharma Merchant Services for perhaps my favorite merchant experience. But for mobile processing, no one I’ve seen can beat Flint in terms of affordability and ease. Let me know what you think in a comment below!

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
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189 Comments

    Curtis

    Hi. I am looking to choose the best mobile payment option for my business. I am an owner/operator of my own plumbing company. I just recently started this business. Most of my customers are residential home owners that usually pay cash or by check. I do want the ability to take credit to give that option to my customers since everyone has a different financial situation. With that being said i dont expect to do a ton of monthly business transactions through the app BUT when i do use it ,the payments could range anywhere from $100 -$500 on the low end up to $3000 -$4000 on the high end. More often than not the low end payments would be in play. The high end payments arent very often or might not be processed through a credit card. With that scenerio laid out for you, what would you pick? Square got me a little worried after i read about them with freezing accounts, fraud accusations etc. I figured they might do that to me with such wild swings in activity?

    Thanks for the help

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Curtis,

    Unfortunately there is always a greater risk of funding holds involved with accepting large payments, especially sporadically. But there are absolutely ways to minimize that risk. Flint will be a much better bet than Square. Square does not disclose any processing limits, so you are left guessing and basically just crossing your fingers on a big transaction. Flint does disclose processing limits, and they have a protocol for getting those limits raised. Even the default limits with Flint are pretty close to what you need. I’d suggest signing up and applying for a limit increase if needed. If they deny you the increase, it may be time to consider a full-fledged merchant account (or just stay within the limits set). If that ends up being the case, consider Payline Data. Only $5 per month.

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    Elisa

    Hi, Tom, thank you so much for taking the time to keep this website resource up. I really appreciate your reviews.

    Your review for Flint sounds great, but I am surprised you rate them so highly considering your advice about EMV chip compatible systems (which of course, they are not.) http://www.merchantmaverick.com/really-need-emv-chip-card-terminal/

    My other concern is that they use Fifth Third Bank for deposits, and Fifth Third has very bad reviews (one out of five stars and many complaints) online.

    My current merchant services provider just sent an update through that broke my credit card processing machine, so I am in a hurry to rectify that situation. It just makes sense to go with a chip compatible processor at this point, does it not?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Elisa,

    Flint is in a unique position regarding chip cards, since the cards are scanned and technically processed as card-not-present (which doesn’t require the chip to be read). Flint will likely make an announcement this summer regarding chip cards and whether they will ask users to upgrade hardware (my guess is no). But rest assured, they will be compliant. All processors will be EMV-compatible by October, otherwise they will be out of business.

    As for the Fifth-Third connection, that is simply a connection with their backend processor. The complaints you read about Fifth-Third will not pertain to accounts set up via Flint. Flint ultimately has control over the user experience.

    Depending on your business, Flint may or may not be the best solution for you. Check out this tool to get an idea about which provider might be best for your business.

    Hope this helps!

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    Elisa

    Thank you so much for the prompt reply, I’ll check out the tool! And again, thanks for your time & for this resource.

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    John

    Hi Tom,

    Thanks for all your reviews. Very informative. I am looking for a mobile card payment option for a non-profit organization. Our main transaction would be an annual membership fee of $28, and we would like to be able to process membership applications in person at a few expos and conferences throughout the year (maybe a couple hundred in a 1-2 day period), but also provide sign ups off of our website. I have looked at the information on the Flint site, but cannot tell if they would handle non-profits like ours. We are also considering SparkPay and Square. Would you suggest Flint for this periodic sort of use, or is there another provider you would suggest?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi John,

    I think Flint is your best bet. Spark Pay unfortunately doesn’t offer any online selling tools. As long as you don’t need printed receipts, the Flint app will serve you well. Square has a nice app too, but their features are designed for businesses with more complex inventories and ordering needs. Flint is more reliable and easier to manage for a non-profit with your needs. My one recommendation is to make sure that your weekly limits align with your needs. Getting your limits raised may require submitting extra paperwork. Signing up is quick and easy (and free of course), and in your welcome email your limits will be outlined. There will also be a link to follow in order to have your limits increased.

    Good luck!

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    clint

    has flint finally got on board and have support for printing receipts yet? I don’t know if merchantmaverick can offer suggestions to the company, but that is the #1 reason that keeps me from using them.

    RatingNot Rated
    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Clint,

    Not yet unfortunately! I know, it’s the main reason that I have to recommend a service like Square to people when I’d rather send them to Flint. Flint is aware that this is a sticking point and although I can’t say anything for sure, I’d bet that we’ll see printing capability integrated in the fairly near future.

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    NH

    i have one customer that I bill once a month. The invoice is $4500 for the service my company provides. She likes to pay by CC over the phone. So I key in the card. I used to use Merchant Services for years but with only one client the rates and fees were $350+. I went over to Square last Oct and have liked it because it’s easy, fast and half the fees.
    In April I was emailed by Square to update/verify my account. I tried doing so and it wouldn’t let me saying that my EIN # was invalid. Well, it’s the same EIN # I have had since 2000. Needless to say I cannot/have not been able to get in touch with anyone at Square to resolve the issue. I have emailed 4 times and only get a ‘thank you for your email we’ll get back with you’ response. So I cannot bill/receive payment from my client for work already done.
    I only need to key in one card once a month.
    What is the best/least frustrating/lowest fee company I can use – that actually has good customer service and won’t hold my $ for weeks?
    Thank you.

    RatingNot Rated

    This comment refers to an earlier version of this review and may be outdated.

    Tom DeSimone

    Hi NH,

    Check out Payline Data. Good low volume (but not “mobile”) solution, quality customer support.

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    This comment refers to an earlier version of this review and may be outdated.

    Paul

    I sell at farmers markets and thought flint might work for me. But no. Some items we sell are taxable and some items are not taxable.

    – In setting it up I found there was no way to add a custom amount to a ticket without it adding in tax, whether or not you need to charge tax on the custom amount.

    – There was no way to charge for an item in less than whole numbers. Say a customer buys 2.5 pounds of apples. Even if you have a price set for a pound of apples, there’s no way to enter any quantity other than 1, 2, 3, etc.

    It was very easy to set up the account, but I don’t think I will ever have a use for it. I will probably delete it right away. Maybe a future version will add these basic features.

    I guess if you are selling widgets that are never sold in fractional quantities and always need to compute tax on custom amounts, this app might work for you.

    RatingNot Rated

    This comment refers to an earlier version of this review and may be outdated.

    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Paul,

    Flint does allow you to make some items taxable and other not, but you are correct about the custom amount. If you want to type in a custom amount and ONLY a custom amount, you can just turn the tax off for that order. But if it’s a custom amount mixed in with other taxable items, you have to work around it. One way to do this is to add a discount to the order equal to the tax. Since the taxed price is displayed in the order screen, this is easy to do.

    If you’d like to sell by the fraction of a pound, you can create an item that is “Apples, 1/4 lb” and then add five of them to make 1 and 1/4 lbs. Or if you needed more precision, it could be “Apples, 1/10 lb” and add 10 per pound. I’m not aware of any free (no monthly fee) mobile POS apps with processing service that support scales or fractional quantities, unfortunately. If you come across one, please let us know.

    Hope this helps.

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    This comment refers to an earlier version of this review and may be outdated.

    Paul

    Thank you for your clever workarounds. I decided to turn off the tax computation feature completely and set tax-included pricing on all taxable items. Then I can back out the taxes later and use custom amounts with tax off. Sure would be nice if there was a sales by item report to make that easy, but alas I didn’t find that. Square has better reporting.

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    This comment refers to an earlier version of this review and may be outdated.

    Michele

    Not sure If I’m going to rate right now. I have been using Flint for a few months now. I do love it, and haven’t had any problems, till now! I recently received two good size transactions via debit card, and it’s now going on 4 business days and haven’t received my deposit? Hmmm If I have to call, I’m not going to be happy! I haven’t even received an email indicating why it’s taking so long. Like Square, they send you and email when to expect your deposit.

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    This comment refers to an earlier version of this review and may be outdated.

    Sean Crane

    I am suspicious enough of this industry to know when a gushing review comes there is a connection between the reviewer and the reviewee, OR, the reviewee is one of the few folks around that has customer service squarely taken care of. I am clear by reading the experiences of others that Flint does not yet have its act together as a customer service unit in a fashion which matches this review. It may be true that the rules COULD TEND to make Flint more of a sure thing, I still hear a fair degree of inability of the merchant to RELY on deposits being made in a timely fashion without withhold and with clearly readable portal as regards withheld transactions. I am interested to note your industry offers NO STANDARD METRIC SET BY WHICH TO POLICE ITSELF. With these thoughts in mind, Hometown Green has been in business as a bricks and mortar business for 8 years and has the following needs. We sell solar swimming pool heating systems which we install on customers homes. Most of our business occurs between March 15 and October 1. The average system sale is $5.5K. (High is $10K) 30% is taken up front (average $1650) and the remainder (average $3850) upon completion. We may see up to two systems purchased via card in any one month. We also might sell two sets of solar pool rings for $550 a set in any one month, and in the fall we might do 10 service calls a month at $150 each. Most of our clients pay cash or check and a few take 0 to low interest financing. We own homes and our FICOs are 742 and 777. Cash FLOW is KING for us. So any thoughts about which provider might have UNPARELLELED UP FRONT COMMUNICATIONS WHICH RESULT IN PROPER LIMITS BEING SET TO BEGIN WITH SO RESERVES ARE NOT DECLARED AND LIMITS ARE NOT BROKEN: I simply don’t want to screw around with a provider who sees withholding my money as an avenue to purchase their next bently or some other similarly useless bauble: I just want a rate to reliably process the cards with clearly defined boundaries without the hooey and puffery that seems to go with dealing with your under scrutinized industry.

    Rating33333

    This comment refers to an earlier version of this review and may be outdated.

    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Sean,

    Unfortunately, there are no guarantees in credit card processing. Accepting a credit payment comes with inherent risks. While paying with credit is “as good as cash” for the consumer, it is certainly not for the business owner. The credit industry is designed to benefit the consumer and has a lot of potential to burden business owners. Flint is a mobile processing option that cost $0 per month, and makes pretty slim pickings on the per-transaction rates. For the money, you can’t beat Flint in terms of reliability and service. Are 100% of customers 100% satisfied? Of course not. But they do an amazing job when it comes to keeping as many users satisfied as possible – a much better job than comparable competitors – and they have a really nice piece of software too (I’ve tested them all). For these reasons and more, they earned a 5-star rating.

    If you do not have a card processing history, it is particularly difficult to promise you that funds will not be held in reserve. Reserves are held based on perceived risk. This is true no matter who your processor is. The perceived risk depends on the types transactions you process, your business type, your processing history, and many other qualities.

    Given the transaction sizes you’re looking at, and the need for the best customer service and reliability possible, I would recommend that you check out Dharma Merchant Services. Yes, it will be more expensive than Flint, but for you I think it is money well spent.

    If you are interested in a less expensive option, check out Payline Data. They are also reliable and have quality customer service. I also think that Helcim would suit your needs, but their mobile processing option is a little pricey in my opinion.

    I certainly appreciate your skepticism. Frankly, we go into every review expecting to be disappointed. (We often are.) So when we find something that works, we make a fuss about it. If you’re interested to learn more about how we remain unbiased in the process, read this.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    This comment refers to an earlier version of this review and may be outdated.

    jeffrey kraus

    I have been in business for 22 years and with flint for less than a week. As I am writing this I have been on hold for 15 minutes after being disconnected twice from their customer service. My account has been temporarily suspended for no apparent reason after only 4 transactions, which their reviews say doesn’t happen. I am very dissatisfied and feel like I was scammed. Business depends on cashflow and right now they are holding MY MONEY.

    Rating11111

    This comment refers to an earlier version of this review and may be outdated.

    Fran

    How is Flint going to handle EMV compliant cards? Right now we have a regular merchant account with a machine and are looking to simplify and cut costs. But we are concerned about the liability that will shift in October. I see on the Square site that they are offering a reader that can read chipped cards to be shipped in May.

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    This comment refers to an earlier version of this review and may be outdated.

    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Fran,

    It’s unclear at this moment how Flint will handle chip cards. Since there camera scan system technically treats transactions as card-not-present, it is likely that no chip reader will be needed (since reading the chip is obviously not required for card-not-present transactions). But we will keep this updated as new information is released.

    -Tom

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    Aubrey Dickerson

    Flint.com is bull#$%#! WARNING!!! I started my small business and enrolled in Flint.com. My first invoice was $300 for a website. I used Flint.com to invoice my customer since they were located in a different state. The invoice limit was $250 so it didn’t go through. Flint.com wouldn’t increase the limit. I deleted the invoice, created two smaller invoices, contacted the customer and they paid them. Then Flint.com requested a million pieces of information from me, half of which I had already previously submitted. Then they cancelled my account and refunded the transactions to the customer. Not only did the prove to be an epic failure but they also successfully made my business look like a circus act in the process! BE WARNED!!! If you use Flint.com, you’re going to be regret it, and so will your customers!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Aubrey,

    You cannot split a transaction into two in order to make it look like two smaller transactions. This is against card network rules and is grounds for account termination. It sounds like Flint acted appropriately here. They make transaction limits clear, and while you can apply for higher limits they reserve the right to refuse. If this occurred at any other card processor the outcome would have been the same. Be careful in the future, and make sure your processing limits align with your needs.

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    Natalie Roberts

    Um actually, I just encountered the same thing about processing limit with Flint. And THEY suggested I break the invoice in two to make smaller invoices and resend to my client, and therefore get paid right away. Oh Yes they did!

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    Tom DeSimone

    That is very surprising. Thank you for posting this. To anyone reading this I would still not recommend splitting transactions. If you need to or intend to do this, please call your payment processor (Flint or otherwise) to get an approval for this practice. In general, it is not allowed. To learn more about this topic, check out this brief article.

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    Lee Whittaker

    Hi, My husband and I are looking for an online credit merchant for our small business. My only issue is that while we don’t expect to do 10,000 a month as required by Flint we could easily exceed 3000 in a month during our best months. We sell a weight gauge used by farmers on loaders and heave equipment loaders. During the winter the sales fall off. We also have multiple sales sometimes and as each gauge is a little over 500 with shipping charges, we could exceed 1000 per transaction. We will be doing farm shows that could easily do 3000+ a show. Almost all of our business is being manually keyed in at this point but as soon as our website is up we want to be able to take payments over the web. Who do you suggest for this type of business.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Lee,

    Processing under $10K per month is no problem with Flint. By default, they limit you to $3,000 per week for card-present payments (scanned with the app, not typed in). Limits are different for online payments. If you’d like to processing over the default limits, you can easily apply for higher limits.

    The one other thing to be aware of with Flint is that they are not a good solution for phone orders or mail orders, since a signature is required. To process payments when the card is not present, you can use their invoicing feature, where no signature is required. You can also create payment pages without a website to allow buyers to purchase a specific item. And when you do get the website up, the payment buttons are easy to work with.

    So all in all I think Flint could be a good solution for your business. Definitely the best one that does not include a monthly fee. I’d say give them a shot. If they don’t end up being a good fit, come back and we’ll help you find a different solution.

    Take care,
    Tom

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    Cathy

    I’m looking for a CC processing service for a new generation iPad. I am a small antique vintage clothing business doing two day monthly event sales in a fixed location. My monthly revenue show has been $850 to $3000 with potential for higher. Imagine my surprise to find that my business is now considered high risk.

    I have been in business before in a brick and mortar location (same business) in another city for several years with a phone based local merchant processing account. 2008 hurt sales and caused me to kill the business while well in the black and my credit rating is/was stellar.

    I reopened in an event venue over a year ago in a limited way to reduce inventory I’m holding and for fun and have been operating in a venue that processes all of our sales through the Square. I had intended to use the Square in my new venue and went as far as getting the device but can’t for some reason sign up. Tech support has been non-existent and that led me to read reviews which concern me.

    So I’m shopping for a service that can be run through an iPad, that is simple and has a decent level of realtime customer support. I understand by reading the review that I might run into trouble if I have a good show and pop up over 3K in CC sales with Flint?

    Any advice?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Cathy,

    For businesses considered high-risk, Payline Data is a good option. You’ll have to pay the $5 monthly fee, but there is no monthly minimum. They will be able to set you up with an iPad-based processing app.

    Flint is my all-around favorite, but if your business is considered high-risk I’m not sure if they will set up the account, and if they do there is always a chance of the account being terminated later on. So the safest bet is to try Payline. But it might also be worth talking to Flint to see what they think. The $3K in sales is not necessarily a dealbreaker with them, but you will likely have to apply for higher limits. It’s just one additional form to do so.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Cathy

    I can’t imagine why antiques and vintage clothing are considered high risk. Other things on the list make sense for the most part, this does not. In my years of business with a traditional CC processor, I never had a chargeback, nor have any of my items in the past year been a problem for the house. I will talk to Flint and Paypal? to see what they have to say. Unfortunately the Square has lost my business before it got started. If I have this much trouble signing up, I can’t imagine what would happen should an actual problem arise. Thanks for your advice.

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    Joe

    I’ve been having quite a few issues with Flint as of late. They do have a nice admin panel to view each transaction – and even break them down into day, week, month, and year for you. Their downfall is that they do not issue official monthly statements, or allow you to view batches (deposits) in real time. I’ve now had 3 or 4 instances were deposits were not processed, and I had to contact them to find out what the issue was. No email notifications were sent, and you cannot view any information relevant to batch statuses in your admin panel. I’m almost thinking that if I never emailed them or asked them about the deposits they would not have been sent. I have also received 2 retrieval requests (via email) that did not even pertain to my company. I’m a little concerned about the level of quality assurance they use, and the amount of time it takes to hear back from their support team (generally 2 or 3 days). Has anyone else had issues like this using Flint? Their rates are great (and they even accept Discover and AmEx now) but when running a successful business you need to know those deposits are coming in no matter what – or notify me immediately if there is a delay.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Joe,

    I haven’t heard any similar reports in terms of delays, but I definitely appreciate your feedback. They promise 1-2 business days for deposits when you link your bank account, so any amount of time longer than two days is underperforming. Delays should definitely be accompanied by an email.

    I’ll look into this. Keep us posted if you have any new information.

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    Joe

    It has now been 7 business days since I should have received my numerous deposits. I contacted support 4 times through this period, and each time they reply 2 business days later saying they’ll “look into it and let me know what they find” – with that I have not heard another work from them. My bank account has been linked since the very beginning, so I know that is not the issue. Support really needs to notify a merchant when deposits will be delayed/held. There is a merchant admin portal I can access, but nowhere in there can you see real-time updates on batches, debits to your account, retrieval requests, etc.

    They were excellent the first couple of months, but have since really dropped the ball. I wonder if the on-boarding of Discover & AmEx has anything to do with this?

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    Jeff Williams

    Joe,

    Email jeff@flint.com with the email you use to login into the Flint app and I’ll get this resolved for you by end of day today.

    -jeff

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    Joe

    I emailed Jeff detailed attachments showing all the emails between myself and Flint’s “support team” at 8:14AM CST. Hopefully I hear back from him today. I’ll be sure to update this post when I do (or if I don’t).

    As of yesterday (Monday) Flint Support told me that a deposit was going to come through today (Tuesday) but as of 10:30AM CST Tuesday it has not. I plan on following up with the BBB if I do not hear from someone soon as this is really affecting my credit card processing abilities and my shipments to customers. At this point I have stopped running my transactions through Flint.

    If Flint called and/or emailed me and told me they were going to withhold batches and payments I would not be as upset, but it’s the lack of transparency and inability to monitor my own processing batches/statements that really rubs me the wrong way. Running a successful business is hard enough without these additional unnecessary obstacles. I truly hope no chargebacks occur on my end due to Flint’s delay in deposits.

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    Joe

    My email to jeff@flint.com bounced back Wednesday morning at 8:37AM CST. I resent the email shortly after from another email address with a delivery/read receipt, and I’ll update this post when I hear from him. Tanner (from their Support Team) promised to send me a detailed breakdown of all transactions & deposits on 03/23/2015 by the end of day. I have yet to receive that information as of this post.

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    Jeff

    Hi Joe, I did receive your email this morning. Thank you.
    I do see our support team addressing your requests today.

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    Joe

    I finally received word back from Jeff & the Flint Support Team. It appears that they’ve been holding various batches dating back to March 2nd. I was never notified of this via phone/email (this information in not accessible in my online Flint admin panel), and it actually contradicts messages I’ve received from the Flint Support Team. On March 23rd I received an email from Tanner (of the Flint Support Team) indicating that a manual deposit had been initiated in the amount of $165.49. As of this post I have not received it. Chargebacks are now starting to accrue since I never received the funds to fulfill customers’ pending orders (my fault or Flint’s fault?). I’m not sure if anyone else has had issues like this with Flint, but I plan on continuing updates to this post & with the BBB until all is resolved. Be very careful if you are an online merchant and utilizing Flint for your processing needs. Running a business is hard enough – merchant accounts should not be another obstacle. BTW – numerous of their response emails have come through between midnight and 2AM CST – are they even US-based? PM me if you’d like more information on Flint.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Joe,

    No matter who you process with, funding holds are possible, although I definitely agree that Flint should have been more communicative about the holds. Be very careful with the chargebacks. Depending on your overall volume, accumulating even just a few chargebacks could be grounds for terminating your account, or at the very least make future holds more likely. And a history of chargebacks could likewise make it more difficult to secure a new merchant account. If you would prefer not to ship goods until the funds hit your account, and the transaction takes more than a few days to clear, it would be wise to contact the customer to explain the delay and offer to refund the transaction so that a different payment method can be selected.

    Some of the holds may have to do with your business type, which many processors consider to have a higher overall risk. You might consider switching to Payline Data, who advertises compatibility with your business type here.

    One way or another I hope that this is solved as quickly as possible for you. Please do everything you can to prevent future chargebacks. They can be very damaging for your business.

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    Eric Verona

    I signed up for Flint several months ago. I was recovering from a bad financial time due to family medical emergencies so my credit had suffered. Nonetheless Flint approved me and I had my account. Fast forward and I read all the great things about Flint on here. I decided to switch from Square to Flint. Put up online payment pages and advertise some. But I made the (evidently) huge mistake of asking to increase my limits. Now my credit is far better than when I got my account approved initially. So what did they do? So no to the increase request? NOPE. They dropped me entirely! And no my credit is not awful, its in the fair to almost good range. It was definitely in the poor range several months ago when they approved me for an account. All my previous debts are paid. BE CAREFUL to rely on Flint as a business partner. Does this make sense to anyone?

    Here is their robotic email notifying me.

    MAR 17, 2015 | 09:54AM PDT
    Hi Eric,

    Thank you for providing the requested information. After review, our risk team has determined that we will no longer be able to maintain an account for you at this time. The decision to close your account was based on information gathered from several sources including personal credit and publicly available information.

    A letter with additional detail was also sent to the address on file.

    Sincerely,
    Flint Risk Operations

    I called them and they they believe this decision is irreversible and for life! They said only way to get more info is to reply to the email. Still waiting for a reply.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Eric,

    I’m sorry to hear about that. I generally recommend Flint in order to prevent the exact scenario that you are describing. It’s much rarer with Flint than many other similar processors, but it can still happen. While it does of course seem counterintuitive to close the account as your credit is improving instead of just denying the limit increase, there must have been some additional piece of information that came up during the process, which may not have even had to do with your credit score directly (since a soft credit pull is done earlier on when you first created the account, I don’t think the reason for closure is credit score alone). I’m glad that they will be sending you a letter with additional details at least.

    If Flint is unable to work with your business, consider trying one of our other mobile processors. If it turns out that some aspect of your business makes you high-risk, then consider signing up with Payline Data. They specialize in this kind of account.

    Good luck, and keep us posted.

    -Tom

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    Eric Verona

    The letter was useless. Their phone rep was useless. Responding to the email was useless. Thank you for providing this opportunity to share my experience. I can’t be more disgusted by the experience Ive had in this regard.

    Here is the “explaination” from their letter:

    In reviewing your account, we requested and received information from the Consumer Reporting Agency listed below (Experian). The Consumer Reporting Agency’s Role was to provide us with character background related information about you. Therefor, they will be unable to supply the reasons why credit was not extended to you.

    And it goes on to tell me how to get my report. But no reason why I was cancelled. I love how they call it an issue of my character. Very insulting. My credit issues are the direct result of high moral character and ethics.

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    Doctor J

    I have used FLINT for 2 months and SERVICE IS UNRELIABLE over Wi-Fi & data. I’ve had issues over last 3 days that has caused over $300 in uncollected revenue do to app not working correctly. After several calls to tech. support issues continue. Great percentages but go with higher rates & a more reliable company. Save yourself the headache.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Doctor J,

    My first thought is that this might be a device or service issue, since in general I do not hear many complaints about the app’s reliability. Are you using a new mobile payments app now? If the issues return, then it might be a device/service issue. If not, it’s possible that there is some device compatibility issue, or that the app needs to be updated/reinstalled. It’s also possible that there was a service interruption on Flint’s end, but again I haven’t heard similar reports from other merchants so it might be an isolated issue. You must maintain consistent connection to either data or wifi during the transaction in order for it to complete successfully.

    If you decide to switch to another mobile processor, I hope you’ll take advantage of our reviews to pick one. I will definitely be keeping an ear out for other merchants reporting issues similar to what you’ve described. If you’d like to give Flint another chance, consider uninstalling and reinstalling the app, and making sure that your service connection is consistent.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Larry

    Use Mobil 8 months per year and $40k with credit or debit business. Currently using Flagship, but min. Is costly. Any suggestions?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Larry,

    My go-to suggestion for you is Flint. Try them out and see if they suit your needs. If not, consider Spark Pay. If not Spark Pay, consider Payline Data.

    Good luck!

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    Renee

    I am a stay at home mom with a “hobby” creating jewelry and selling it at one maybe two shows a year. So I take in $300-700 per year. I thought I’d give Flint a try and I will never look back. It makes me look professional, and it makes me feel legitimate! I have increased my sales at these local art fairs just because I can now say, “I take Credit Cards”. It’s really easy to snap and ask a few questions and bam! send the email receipt if they want it, and I’m good to go.
    The only thing I am not thrilled about, and am nervous about right now, is that I got a 1099 in the mail a few weeks ago and am not sure what our tax preparer is going to say to me. I don’t feel I should be paying income tax to uncle sam…I make so little, I don’t even break even.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Renee,

    Glad Flint has been a good match! I totally hear you about the 1099K. It’s a trade off. With some other providers like Square, you won’t get a 1099K, but you run the risk of having your funds withheld for up to six months. With Flint, you get the 1099K but there is little risk of withheld funds. The added security outweighs the potential for paying extra in taxes for me. If you claim the income as business income you can write off certain expenses, including the processing fees. Overall, I think it’s worth it. You still won’t have to claim cash and check payments if you don’t want to (although of course from a legal perspective you are required to, and none of this should be taken as legal advice).

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Rhonda

    Hello. I have a small, “one operator” hair salon. Which service would you recommend for me? I currently have a merchant account but all of the fees seem extremely high given my small volume of sales.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Rhonda,

    This depends on a few things. I’d say the place to start is Flint. They have the most predictable service and lowest overall rates of any mobile processor I’m aware of. The downside is that you can’t process American Express cards, and you can’t connect to a cash drawer/receipt printer. If those features aren’t important to you, then definitely give Flint a try.

    If you find that you need more features, consider Spark Pay, PayPal Here, or Square. But definitely give Flint first priority.

    Good luck!
    Tom

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    Repke

    Thanks for your review. I’m a small business owner and only use my cell phone as my primary line. Right now I only accept cash or checks which my clients have no problem paying. (I’m a personal trainer). I currently get paid anywhere from $7000 to $10,000 per month via checks but I get sick of always having to go to the bank because all my clients don’t always pay at the same time.

    I’m looking to find the LOWEST rate credit card swiper because I will be passing the cost to my clients. Let’s say I averaged $8000 in transaction per month, what would you recommend?

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    Keith Brown

    Hi Tom,

    I’ve just self published my first book via CreateSpace. Congrats to me.

    The book will sell on Amazon and Kindle, and friends had suggested Square for me to use when selling the books myself, such as at book signing events, to friends and family, speaking engagements, etc.

    I like the idea of offering a credit / debit option, rather than just requiring cash or check only from folks, so I see the wisdom in heading this direction, but here’s what I want to know from you.

    The two friends who recommended this both sang Square’s praises, whereas I’m seeing these negative reviews mounting regarding Square holding funds for lengthy periods of time. I’m just an individual living on a budget, and if Square were to hold even a few hundred dollars of my funds for even two months, that would adversely impact my ability to continue purchasing additional books for me to sell at the next speaking engagement.

    Reading your reviews, it looks like Flint hits a Grand Slam in the “not holding funds” department, and may be a better fit for my personal book selling needs than Square.

    Would you agree that Flint may be the best fit for a little guy like me?

    Thanks Tom, great reviews, you’re helping us folks out here trying to make decisions, and I appreciate your research and writing.

    Take care,

    Keith

    BTW, if you like nonfictional human interest stories, with an inspirational thread woven into them, check out my book when you get a chance. It is now on Amazon and is entitled “As The Leaves Change: 52 Inspirational Stories Reflecting The Seasons Of Change In My Life” by author Keith A. Brown

    The book is 360 pages of short stories that are an easy and quick read, they’re poignant, coming from deep within my heart and soul, and I believe many of the stories will elicit strong emotional reactions within you. I hope you’ll pick up a copy to put in your backpack when you go hiking!

    How’s that for a shameless commercial? Ha!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Keith,

    So glad you’ve found the reviews helpful! I think Flint would be a great choice for you. My recommendation is to go with Flint to start with. If you feel that you need more features or that you’d really like to accept American Express cards, then maybe consider other options. Square can be great for certain business type, especially quick service restaurants and cafes, but for your purposes I really think that Flint is the best and definitely most secure option.

    Good luck, and keep us posted with your experience.

    -Tom

    PS, I’ll put your book on my Amazon wish list!

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    Vickie

    I have a girl scout troop and we are upon cookie season. I have heard troops talk about using square but they do a larger amount of sales than my troop would. I would say we would average sales of about $400 on a Saturday and then $300-$400 on a Sunday. We only sell for three weeks out of the year. Would flint be a good fit? Also since we are non-profit and I have the bank account set up as a non-profit business account (with the use of our councils tax ID number) how should the flint account be set up? As a business account? I ask that because I have read some of the previous comments and questions in which some accounts were set up as a personal account that needed to be business. Does it matter if the bank account has a debit card attached to it? I was also wondering if a Samsung Galaxy Centura android 4.0.4 phone would possibly meet the requirements or would I have to sign up for an account first to try it as I am worried about how the camera takes pictures(many do not take well in darker settings such as overcast outdoors). Any suggestions would be great.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Vickie,

    Thanks for reading! Flint should suit your needs well. In the sign up process you will be prompted to enter a Tax ID Number if you have one, at which point you should supply your council’s TIN. Otherwise at tax time you will receive a 1099-K for earnings in your name. In terms of the bank account, there’s no problem with having a debit card attached.

    The best way to see how the app will function on your phone is to sign up and try it out. It’s a no-commitment agreement, since you won’t pay anything until you begin to process transactions. You can also get in touch with Flint’s support via email or phone to see if there are any known compatibility issues with your device.

    I tested the app in a variety of lighting conditions, including in the corner of a room with blinds drawn and all lights off, and did not have a single error. I even tested cards that had most/all of the reflective ink worn off the numbers in low light, and it worked every time. So while I was skeptical at first, I can wholeheartedly endorse their number recognition software.

    Let us know how it goes! Flint has way better account stability than Square, plus it costs less overall. It doesn’t have all of the same features, but still very functional.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Vickie

    Thanks for the insight, greatly appreciated. I will definitely give them a try and respond an update. All of your information on the many sites has been very helpful. Thanks!

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    Jeff

    Hey there!
    Loved the reviews, I’m in the process of choosing a mobile app provider and really wanted to go with Flint yet they aren’t doing business in Canada yet. If you could give me your personal runner up for a small plumbing business just starting out what provider would you suggest beside flint?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Jeff,

    Glad to help! Canadian mobile processing is tricky. My first choice would be Payline Data. They’ll charge a $5 monthly fee, but the service is reliable. My second choice for low-volume mobile accounts in Canada is probably Square. While their account stability suffers, they do service Canada and their features are great with no monthly fee. But honestly, I think Payline is worth the $5, plus their rates are better than Square’s.

    Hope this helps. Let us know how it goes!
    -Tom

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    Terri

    Opening a boutique coffee shop with some food service. Need a small POS system and will do quite a bit of small charges, but should never do huge charges. Would square be fine for me?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Terri,

    Square should be fine in your case. There are no guarantees, but I’ve heard from other businesses like yours who had good result with their system.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Shanna

    Hi,

    Does Flint have a way to set up monthly payments? We also need the account to be able to set up a plan for our customer and take the money from their account on the day that it’s set up.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Shanna,

    Unfortunately, Flint does not do this. The only providers that have a good setup for this will charge a monthly fee. I’d suggest you check out Payment Depot or CDGcommerce for this service. Both are reasonably priced and can get you set up for this at no additional cost.

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    Richard Breitenbach

    Your review is great. I got a Flint account about a month ago, and it worked well on my Galaxy S4, except for the e-mailed receipts are not delivered. I tried a couple of test transactions, and the receipt showed up in my account, but not in the e-mail. I contacted phone support, and they said everything appeared to be set up correctly, and they would refer it to the engineers and get back to me.

    After a couple of weeks with no response, I did a couple more test transactions to a different e-mail address (in case my domain was blocked for some reason), with no receipt delivered. I contacted the e-mail customer support, and they wrote back that they weren’t aware of any issues, and to contact phone support if I was having trouble. I did, and they ran a few simple tests with me. I did a cash transaction, and got the e-mail receipt immediately. Then I did another card transaction, and didn’t get the receipt. The support lady was very polite, and she said she would refer the issue to the engineers and get back to me.

    A couple of weeks later now, I’ve had no response. This would be a really handy app for me, but to get a card receipt for a customer in the field, I have to log in to my online account with my laptop and print it out, or print it to PDF and e-mail it from the laptop. Its a big workaround for something that’s supposed to work already.

    Customer support was timely, but not very effective. I hope they can eventually make this work.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Richard,

    Getting the receipts to go through is definitely imperative. Two troubleshooting steps that I would suggest (and you may have already taken) would be (a) uninstall and reinstall the app, and (b) try the app on a different device to see if it’s a matter of device compatibility. Another workaroud to try (assuming a better solution cannot be found) might be to go into your transaction history in the app and hit “Resend Receipt” to see if it goes through. I haven’t heard any other reports of this problem, so I’m hoping it’s an isolated issue (and a solvable one).

    Keep us posted with your progress.

    -Tom

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    Richard Breitenbach

    I had tried your suggestions except trying the app on a different phone, and they didn’t help. I didn’t think it would be the phone, since the receipts were showing up in my account with the correct e-mail address. Re-sending from the phone or PC didn’t help.

    I tried re-sending from the PC today after I wrote my rant, and I got a receipt from every transaction. I guess my account is fixed now, and I’m ready to go.

    Thanks,
    Richard

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    eric iverson

    I understand why Flint doesn’t “freeze or hold” funds, but what processes do they have in place to guard against fraudulent accounts and identity thiefs who steal card info and create these fake accounts to steal money?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Eric,

    Flint uses all the same safeguards as any merchant account provider. They have protocols in place to verify your identity before you are allowed to open an account. From there, the processor handles risk management to identify potentially fraudulent transactions based on business location, card holder location, transaction size, patterns of transactions, business type, and a host of other metrics. This is an important aspect of any payment processing company.

    -Tom

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    Michael Chambers

    Stay away from Flint. I used them for the last year and just received a 1099-K tax form for $1,200 in total transactions. Most all mobile card reader companies only report if you exceed $20,000 or 200 total transactions in a year. There is nothing on Flint’s website that discloses they will do this.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Michael,

    That definitely does contradict the terms they disclose as well as the industry standard. I’m not sure why they did this for your business. It is in their best interest not to do this, since filing takes up resources on their end. When not required by law, there is no incentive for them to report your income to the IRS. Have you contacted Flint’s customer support about this? I’d be interested to know what their explanation is.

    -Tom

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    Michael Chambers

    I did contact their customer service department and was told they do 1099-K’s for everyone regardless of the amount of total transactions.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Michael,

    Thank you for reporting this. I’m going to update this information in the review. For third-party processors, 1099Ks must be provide only if a merchant processes over $20K and 200 transaction in a year. Standard merchant account providers (who are also more stable and less likely to withhold funds or freeze accounts) are required to provide 1099Ks to all merchants, regardless of volume. I hadn’t considered this when I first replied to your comment. When Flint provides a standard merchant account instead of an aggregated account, they must provide a 1099K regardless of volume. What’s most disappointing to me is that this fact is not made clear in their Terms, and in fact the agreement implies that no IRS report will be filed.

    Did you apply for a limit increase by any chance? Did they at any point send you an updated Agreement?

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    Michael Chambers

    My frustration is due to their lack of disclosing this in their terms.

    I did not apply for a limit increase.

    When I spoke with the Flint customer service person, he informed me that he has received many calls from unhappy callers expressing similar frustration.

    Perhaps exposing them on a website like this will bring awareness to not only consumers but also Flint so they can improve their business processes.

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    Tom DeSimone

    I 100% agree with you. Thank you for your help on this.

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    Michael Chambers

    Will you be contacting Flint to verify and then updating your review with how they operate?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Absolutely. I just sent you an email to follow up about this in more detail.

    Thank you!

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    Wally Calayag

    Awesome App Great Support! Ashley,Carlos and the whole staff has been great support for my business got my money the next day and would definitely
    use them again and this is how a mobile card transaction company should work…FAST AND ORGANIZE!!!

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    Jane

    Tom,
    I was able to download Flint on my phone so now I plan to use my Android tablet for accounting purposes. Do you have any recommendations for POS accounting programs for someone doing speaking engagements who sells their books and CDs and needs to keep track of inventory, taxes, and create invoices? Thanks for any advice you can offer.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Jane,

    Glad to hear that! Since Flint integrates well with QuickBooks Online, that would be my first thought in terms of accounting. They can also take care of your inventory needs if you subscribe to their premium service. Aside from that, you can check out our inventory management reviews. If you need some help choosing, submit this form and we’ll get back to you ASAP.

    Take care,
    Tom

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    Jane

    Tom,
    I read your review that Flint is supported on most mobile phones and tablets. I acquired an Ellipsis 7 tablet for the sole purpose of using it for my business but when I tried to download the Flint app (after signing up) it says it is not supported on my tablet. My understanding from reading all the info on Flint was that as long as your tablet was Android 4.0 or higher and had Google Play that was all that was needed. I now have a two year contract for a tablet and it looks like I cannot use it with Flint. Is there anyway to get the Flint app in my situation? Also, if they support online selling, how does one get the app for one’s website if it doesn’t download on one’s laptop – which is the only way I access my website. Thanks for any help you can give me.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Jane,

    Sorry to hear about that problem. Android device compatibility is tricky and somewhat unpredictable because of minor hardware and software differences from one device to another. I’m a little surprised that the Ellipsis 7 isn’t compatible, though, since I know that it is compatible with some other processing apps.

    Here’s my recommendation. First, I would recommend calling or emailing Flint’s support staff. They may have a workaround for you to get the app running on your tablet. If they say there is nothing they can do, then we should think about finding a different mobile processor for you.

    Flint’s online selling feature is completely controlled through your online account, no app needed. Simply log in through the Flint site to create payment buttons and payment pages, and then insert the buttons or links into your site. You can also send e-invoices through the Flint website instead of in the app itself.

    I hope this helps and that Flint can get the app running on your tablet. If not, see if you can get the PayPal Here app running. They would probably be my second choice for you.

    Take care,
    Tom

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    Jane

    Thank you so much, Tom. I did contact Flint and they have no immediate plans to make Flint compatible with Ellipsis 7 but they will notify me if they do. Thanks for you help with the on-line selling feature.

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    B

    Hello!

    Thank you for your well written article and your ongoing support through the comments section. I am in the process of starting my small business and am considering payment options. My business will by only mobile. relatively low volume and sporadic initially, so I am considering flint and paypal. A question I have is in regard to a bank account being necessary for flint. As business will be slow to begin, a monthly fee for small business banking may not be practical. Would paypal’s higher %/transaction but no need of a bank account make it a more sensible option initially?

    Thanks again for your help,
    B

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi B,

    You can link Flint to your personal bank account, no need to have a business account. PayPal does have the benefit of transferring funds immediately into your PayPal account, which can be spent via a PayPal business debit card (no fees). The downside is that if you do want to transfer funds to go into your bank account from your PayPal account, there will likely be a longer wait than with Flint.

    So don’t worry about opening a new bank account to use Flint as long as you already have a personal bank account.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    B

    Thanks for your quick response. I had assumed I should start a small business bank account as I have always heard to keep personal money and business money separated. I appreciate your taking time to respond and contrasting flint and PayPal.

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    P J

    Tom,
    I serve on the board of a small nonprofit that wants to add online donation capability to our website. The only other thing we might ever need would be mobile payment ability at a fundraising event. I have looked at the companies you recommend but remain unsure about a good fit for our needs. We have no idea what volume usage we might get…one $20 donation then nothing for months, or possibly numerous donations every month.
    Can you suggest some appropriate companies please?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi PJ,

    It sounds like Flint might be your best bet. Since your volume will be low and sporadic, the fact that Flint does not charge a monthly fee or monthly minimum will translate to major saving for you compared to other processors. Their payment/donation buttons are fully customizable and integrate beautifully. You can also create a dedicated payment page if that works better for you.

    The one limitation worth noting is this: You can’t create a “Enter Amount” type of button. The donation amount must be treated like a product and thus be fixed for the web payment buttons. When you accept donations in person, however, you can accept any amount by just typing it in.

    So that’s my only issue with Flint for online donations. If this is a deal-breaker, consider using PayPal‘s donation button for your site, and then maybe using Flint to accept mobile payments. You could also use PayPal Here to collect mobile donations if you choose. Another benefit of using PayPal for donations on your website is that donors can automatically setup recurring monthly donations.

    Hope this helps!
    -Tom

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    Michael

    I Tom, thanks for this site and reviews, very helpful in my search. I have one suggestion. Could you include in your review if they deposit the entire charged amount into your account then bill you later or do they deduct the fees first then deposit the remainder in your account. An example would be paypal and CDG, Paypal takes fees and CDG bills the fees later. Do they also have a reserve they hold back. I just signed with a company and found out later that they have a 5% reserve that they hold for 90 days. I was really shocked about this one.

    Thanks

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    Danielle Rosenman

    I have a very small counseling practice and want to start accepting credit cards. Most of the time I will probably have few credit card payments. However, I also run groups, and on the first or second meeting, could have as much as $4000 paid. I don’t want to have trouble with holding transactions every time groups begin. What do you recommend that I do? I am trying to keep my cost down because my practice and income are generally small. Thanks!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Danielle,

    I think Flint could be a viable option for you. You’ll probably want to submit some additional paperwork to Flint in order to get your limits increased. Other than that you are unlikely to experience problems with funding holds from Flint. As far as no monthly fee providers go, Flint is your best option, especially if you will be collecting payment with the card present. Their e-invoicing and online payment options are also very functional.

    If you find that Flint won’t accommodate the transaction size/volume you are looking for (although I think that they will), check out Payment Depot. They’ll charge you a monthly fee, but provide great value overall.

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    Stephanie

    Hi Tom –
    I have a question about Flint – specifically their enrollment as a new customer. This morning I attempted to establish a new account – based in no small part to your comprehensive reviews of all the various mobile options and my frustration with fees from my current merchant services company.

    What I expected to be a five minute process was entirely unsuccessful. I dutifully entered my name, business name, birth date, taxpayer EIN, last four of my social, and selected a business category. I was then prompted with three generic security questions which I answered. The result? They were unable to establish my account and urged me to contact them.

    Assuming I had simply entered something incorrectly, I began a second time and re-entered all the info and this time answered four different security questions. Same result. At this point, perplexed, I called their customer support. I spoke to a very pleasant man who informed me that I had incorrectly answered too many of the security questions and that I would not be able to establish an account. He did tell me that I could perhaps try again “in the future” but with no answer as to how long I would need to wait. I asked him if this has happened before and he replied “yes” and indicated it was reasonably frequently.

    I asked him if there was someone I might speak to or some mechanism by which I might provide proper documentation to verify my identity and my information but he apologized and said no. I’m seemingly unable to open an account with them.

    I realize that they must use some public information tied to my social security number to establish basic identity (and I’m glad they are careful) but they do not seem to have any way of handling situations where I am who I say I am. I don’t know what security questions I answered that their system deemed incorrect but clearly I know where I have lived and for how long at each address – regardless of what public records may indicate!

    I have emailed their customer support – again reiterating my willingness to provide whatever form of documentation they need so we’ll see…

    Have you heard this complaint previously? Any suggestions for a work-around?

    Thank you.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Stephanie,

    That is certainly frustrating. The truth is that Flint, and all companies who use this type of identity verification security feature, utilize a third-party identification service, and therefore they do not necessarily have the power to override or reset the authentication process when something goes wrong.

    I haven’t heard of this complaint previously in regard to Flint, so I’m hoping it is a somewhat isolated incident. I’m not 100% sure, but if I had to guess I would imagine that if you try again 24 to 48 hours after the failed attempt, it should go through assuming you choose the correct answers. Contacting Flint to try to find a workaround is your best bet, so I’m hoping that their email support team can work this out for you.

    Please let us know how this turns out.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Stephanie

    Hi Tom –
    Thanks for the reply. I did get a very prompt response from the emailed customer service request but unfortunately they conveyed the very same thing – the only way to establish an account is through their brief online process and they use only the public info as their verification process. This is very discouraging but I will do as you suggest and try again in a few days to see if I can provide the “answers” they are looking for. It’s dismaying that one has to work so hard to be a customer of a company!

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    Winnie

    I really don’t understand how Flint gets such high rate. Tom, did you ever try it yourself? It’s not like you said ” use your phone’s camera to scan the card numbers. Bam. Done.” After you scan the card, you have to type in expiration date and flip the card type in cvv code. Then ask the customers for their zip code. After that you have to confirm the card number you just scan. It takes much longer time than just swipe a card. Also the tip option doesn’t work on my phone. I called Flint twice and they said they will have someone get back to me. Never got a phone call. Then I emailed them, only got a reply that someone would get in touch with me. That was it. They never contact me and try to fix the problem. The app doesn’t work on any tablets and doesn’t take anything else besides visa and master cards. How is that a five star company?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Winnie,

    I have used Flint myself, and while it’s not literally as quick as snapping a photo I found the process smooth and reliable. Swipe-based mobile card processing will also require you to confirm certain information from your customers, so this is not unique to the Flint experience. These measures are meant to reduce the incidence of fraud and to prevent the need to withhold funds. Also mobile swipers are prone to malfunction and breakage, forcing you to key-in the transactions at a significantly higher cost. With Flint, even if your camera isn’t working or it is pitch black, you can key-in the info without being charged higher rates.

    It’s definitely true that Flint does not have all of the same capabilities of some other mobile processors (such as AmEx processing, receipt printing, tablet POS functionality, etc.), but this doesn’t bother me. They do what they do very well, and are, in general, upfront about potential limitations. They get five stars because we like the app and find the service to be more reliable than competitors, plus the bonuses of a low debit rate, online payment pages/button, e-invoicing, and other well-executed features.

    But with that said, I don’t like to hear that their phone support didn’t meet your needs, since I usually consider this an asset for Flint. I also don’t like to hear that you are having problems with the tip function on the app. You might consider trying the email support at support@flint.com if you haven’t already. I hope they get this sorted out for you ASAP.

    -Tom

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    Jeff Williams

    Wennie,

    I’ve contacted you via your duplicate comment on another website. We’ve spent considerable time trying to replicate the issue you are having with the tip function but thus far multiple engineers have been unable to duplicate the error with the tip function which you described to our support team. Might you try signing in on another device to see if the issue persists?

    We do support iPads, however, the Flint app is classified as an iPhone app. Thus, if you arrive in the app store on your iPad and search for “Flint” the default set of results will only show you “iPad apps.” In order to get Flint to show up in that context you need to change the results filter to include both iPhone and iPad apps. You can then see flint in the results, install the iPhone app onto the iPad and run transactions normally from there.

    Regarding Amex & Discover please keep you eyes open for the announcement that we support these cards. It’s coming in short order.

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    donall108

    I have been using Flint Mobile Payment App with my iphone for over a year now. While on one hand I am excited at how easy it is to use,especially if you have an auction web store and need to send invoices by email. Once my customers have used a few times,they seem to love it,many stating that it is much better than the other payment alternatives. They have the potential to become the number #1 payment app in the world if they just fix this one small problem,which is a huge problem for me. NO INTERNATIONAL transactions are allowed! Frankly,I cannot express how deeply many international friends have been put off by this. If they can find a way to make global payments work,they will have reached Nirvana!

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    mottaaa

    I would have to second Donald’s opinion. I’m considering and comparing multiple mobile credit card reader companies, and this is a deal breaker for me as 90% of my customers in Miami are coming from other countries. As Donald mentioned, fix this issue and you’ll win many more customers.

    Sincerely

    Aldo

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    Maxine Kaufman-Lacusta

    I read your long and detailed review and was pretty well con inced – but then I saw a comment that Flint doesn’t accept Canadian accounts. If this is true, I think you should mention this right at the beginning.
    So, do I have any alternative to Square with its umpteen complaints?
    Thanks,
    Maxine in Canada

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Maxine,

    Thank you for the input! I have now added a mention of this availability limitation earlier on in the review.

    Unfortunately there are not many great mobile processing options for Canadian accounts. In many cases Square will be your best bet. While they are not perfect, I’ve seen a significant improvement from them in the last year.

    Aside from that, you might want to check out Helcim‘s options. They are my favorite Canadian account provider. Their mobile option is more expensive than Square, but also MUCH more reliable.

    Hope this helps. Good luck.

    -Tom

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    Robert A. Wilson

    Hi Tom,
    I really appreciate this article, after much searching it is the most informative information I have read. I would like your opinion about my situation. I have an auctioneering business and only require CC several times during the year (maybe 8-12). There are times where it maybe used at an auction where sales are $10,000 or more most of the time it will be $2-$3,000. Some months we might use it once or twice, other months maybe not at all. The “Flint” sounds good and not having AmEx, is not a big deal for me. What do you think?
    Sincerely,
    Robert Wilson

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    Jay Shah

    Signed up for Flint almost a month back reading your review. Was very happy to get such low fees. No need for a card reader a plus! But things set into reality. Did first transaction and applied for higher limit but was rejected, no issues with that. 15 days passed still didn’t receive my money from the first transaction. Mailed them 5 times after which they replied that a senior executive will get back to me soon! Meanwhile on 16th day made another transaction and still after 7 days didn’t receive the money. Again mailed them and called them thrice. Every time got the same reply that they will get back to me soon! Finally today after a month of opening the account they mailed me that they have closed my account and they are reversing my transactions. The amount was over a couple thousand dollars. Now i have to reach back to the customers and ask for alternative payment by checks. Hope this helps other readers and save some of their valuable time and money!

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    Jeff Williams

    Jay,

    Unfortunately, we are unable to complete transactions from India. Your account is still active and we are happy to serve your USA based customers going forward.

    best regards,

    Jeff

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    Alex

    Hi Tom, and thanks a lot for a nicely detailed article, Well Done!

    I own a small IT business (computer repair, websites, mobile devices..etc) and I work alone. I do not sell anything online, most of my business is done one-on-one or remotely. I invoice my clients with a Word-Doc invoice and they pay cash or mail me a check (Not very practical or professional). I’m in the process of improving all that, but have been researching and demoing apps and have some questions to help me decide. Your input is very much appreciated.

    Thank you very much Tom, have a wonderful day!
    Alex

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Alex,

    Thanks for reading! I’ve truncated your message here to save space, but will be replying to your full message via email today so we can look at your options.

    Best,
    Tom

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    Marc Goodman

    Hi I am a small biz. Is FLINT a better deal than using a provider that has you use a terminal with a printer??

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Marc,

    It depends on your business type and the dollar volume of card payments you process monthly. In many cases, yes!

    Feel free to send me an email if you need helping figuring out which provider would suit your business best.

    -Tom

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    Claire

    Now I see that Flint doesn’t offer service to Canadain accounts.
    That counts me out!

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    Claire

    Hi Tom,

    Very informative website. Thank you.
    A sales rep from Elavon told me that the new $7.95 monthly PCI compliance fee was mandatory and across the board for all providers.
    Would this be a monthly fee with Flint, or are they exempt for some reason?

    Thanks,
    Claire

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Claire,

    PCI compliance fees are not standardized. Many providers (including Flint) don’t charge them at all. To find out more about PCI compliance fees, check out this article.

    Also, check out Helcim for Canadian accounts!

    Best,
    Tom

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    Steve Pfeifer

    Question: Understand Flint’s standard limits. Do you have comparable numbers from other mobile POS services?
    Suggestion requested: With a club softball team, there may be several months of dormant activity. Then two months in spring and again in the fall, there could be over 1K in transactions in a single day due to dues being paid at a practice. Any suggestions for a mobile POS that could fit those needs?
    Appreciate your research, insight and looking out for the little guy.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Steve,

    Thanks for checking out our reviews!

    All of the mobile processors have low initial account limits, basically in line with Flint’s initial limits. PayPal Here and Square have $2.5K 7-day limits on most new accounts for swiped transactions (keyed-in is lower, about $1000). Any amount processed over these limits may be withheld for 30 to 90 days.

    But, that said, limit increases are always possible with a little extra documentation. This is part of why I like Flint so much. While all mobile processors have protocols for increasing limits, Flint handles it especially well. They are perfectly willing and able to accommodate even high volume businesses ($100K monthly and beyond). They are also less likely to initiate funding holds in general than competitors (assuming you are processing within the limits), and their easy-access to phone support means that if a problem does come up, you’ll at least be able to talk to someone about it.

    Your concern about having the account dormant and then suddenly highly active is valid, but this shouldn’t be a problem with Flint. In order to have the best account stability, I’d encourage you to fill out Flint’s paperwork for increasing account limits (you can find this link in your welcome email). Even if you don’t necessarily need your limits increased, giving them this additional information will give you added security.

    Let us know how it goes! Good luck.

    -Tom

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    Steve Pfeifer

    Thanks for the information.
    Next question: Would online transactions be treated as keyed in card information and therefore subject to lower 7 day limits?
    Again thanks for the help and look forward to your response.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Steve,

    Correct. The online or e-invoiced payments will have lower limits than the scanned transactions because of the increased risk of fraud.

    -Tom

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    Jesus Canelon

    Thank you so much for your input really helpful

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    Linda Mensch

    I just signed up for Flint. I put my bank info in and got a reply saying they can’t pay me through my bank because it has a debt card attached. It is my buisness account. Will they pay through the mail? I did a test sale and it seemed to go through. How would I know?

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    Jana

    Hi Tom. Thanks for the great article and detailed reviews. This is exactly what I needed. I am an artist. The main reason I’m looking into a card reader is I have a show coming up this month in a home rather than a gallery. A lot of transactions could be $20 or less (books and prints), but if someone buys one of the larger paintings it could be over $2000 in a single transaction. And possibly $5,000-10,000+ in one day (for a reception or a big show opening). A show like this might only happen once every few years. My last big show was in 2006. So my volume could be low, or even a flat line for several months, and then all at once have a really big spike. What would you recommend in my case?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Jana,

    Thanks for reading! Your processing needs are complicated to accommodate, because processors – especially mobile-based providers like Flint – are going to consider large, sporadic transactions to be high-risk. This doesn’t necessarily mean that they won’t process the transaction. It just means that they might be required to withhold the funds from you for a period of time, generally 30 to 90 days, occasionally longer. This is done in case the transaction is fraudulent or charged-back, so that the processor has the funds available to issue the refund if needed without paying it out of pocket.

    So the only way I can confidently tell you that you could have quick access to your funds would be to open a traditional merchant account, which will come with a monthly fee. (Although it should be noted that even a traditional account provider may freeze funds if they are not comfortable releasing them immediately – but it’s a way more common problem with mobile-based providers).

    If you decide to go the traditional merchant account route, I’d recommend CDGcommerce first. Their monthly fee is $10, and they can give you a mobile card reader that attaches to your smart phone. Just be sure to give them as accurate an idea of your potential processing habits as possible to avoid holds. To my mind, the extra $10 per month (most of which you will make back on a single transaction, since you’re rates will be lower than with Flint because CDG uses interchange-plus) is worth the peace of mind for large transactions.

    If you decide to go the mobile route (and thus make peace with the idea of withheld funds), Flint would be the best option. You will want to fill out the additional paperwork necessary to have your processing limits increased. But even then you are unlikely to be approved for $10K+ in a day (and thus excess funds will be withheld).

    Hope this helps! Feel free to email me if I can help you further.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Jeff Williams

    Jana,

    You can get higher processing limits approved to accommodate your business needs by completing the form located at: http://www.flint.com/mir/

    It generally takes 2-3 business days to have your info verified and higher limits implemented. Flint can approve merchants up to $100k per transaction with proper documentation.

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    Clint

    no ability to print receipts is a deal killer. i contacted their customer support, they replied quick enough and verified that they don’t have that functionality built in. But was kind of astounded that the reply was more or less ambivalent to that omission. i can’t believe a company would not have the foresight to have printing out receipts! some people like to have a physical receipt. there are even portable, bluetooth receipt printers out there, like the Star Micronics SM-S220I consequently they are not an acceptable solution for me, which is a shame.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Clint,

    I totally agree with you on this. Many businesses really need to be able to at least offer the option of a paper receipt, and no one wants to be writing one out in this day and age. I had mentioned this in the comments but just realized that I didn’t address this shortcoming in the actual review! I definitely should have. Editing right now to include this information.

    Thanks for the comment,
    Tom

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    JON MEYERS

    I can’t find this answer. Does Flint work with Android 2.2? And if flint wont work with Android 2.2, which would be the best one that does? Thanks, JM

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Jon,

    Under their FAQ, Flint states that:

    Android devices must have: Android 4.0 or higher and access to Google Play

    You can try to download and test the app for free to see if it will work with your phone, but it will not officially be supported unless you use Android 4.0 or higher. I’m not aware of any provider that has an app that officially works with Android 2.2.

    But you might consider using a virtual terminal service instead. For a virtual terminal, you just need access to a web browser (can be used on mobile device or at a computer). The downside is that it will generally be more expensive than a pay-per-use mobile process app. Check out Payment Depot or CDGcommerce for inexpensive options.

    Good luck!
    Tom

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    Kasee Glover

    I have been a Flint customer for about 6 months with no issues. My husband runs a private catering business and I recommended he establish a Flint account in order to accept credit cards. Upon his first transaction, he waited for about 4-5 days (checking his bank account daily) for his payment to post and when it didn’t he contacted customer support. Upon doing so he received a customer service representative by the name of [name removed]. I am typing it as such in hopes that the name isn’t blocked and others can be warned. On the first call she was cordial and took my husband’s information and assured him that she would have supervisor contact him first thing the following business day. The reason why he requested a supervisor, is because at this point they have held the money for 5 days pending further information and we did not receive any communication advising that our transaction was being held whatsoever. The next business day, my husband waited and waited for the supervisor and when the call never came he decided to call back. Upon doing so, he received [name removed] again. This time, she was not so cordial, in fact she was down right rude. He asked several times to speak with the supervisor and she repeatedly denied him that right. He expressed his disbelief that they can rightfully hold his money and there’s nothing he can do about it. He expressed that it was unlawful and she stated that he could get an attorney but, she can guarantee they will win. My husband then called me and asked that I complete the information online so they can get his money out of Alcatraz, which I have done. I then called myself to speak with a supervisor and was also unfortunate enough to get [name removed]. I again asked for a supervisor and she asked me for the account information. I again expressed that I would really prefer to speak with a supervisor. She placed me on hold for about 5 minutes and returned to tell me that her supervisor refused to speak with me until I provided account information. I explained that as a consumer, I have the right to speak with a manager. She then stated that the reason she needed the information is because I was not going to speak with a supervisor that I would have to wait for a callback. Each time I spoke, [name removed] felt the need to speak over me to “Show me who’s boss” which was completely unnecessary. I again shared with her, that it is my right to speak with a supervisor. She again placed me on hold for about 5 minutes and came back and stated that she had again spoke with her supervisor and again her supervisor was not getting on the phone. I don’t understand why if she was able to contact the supervisor then why wasn’t I allowed? I then asked to speak with another representative then since I was unable to speak with a supervisor. She again placed me on hold and came back and told me that unless I was to give her my account information she was not going to do anything to help me. She then stated that she was ending the call and promptly hung up on me. I have NEVER experienced such terrible service in my entire life to the point that I was shaking with anger. I will share this at every opportunity possible and if ever given the opportunity to speak with [other name removed], I will tell him about this, too. I would like to be contacted by the company for resolution but absolutely do not EVER wish to speak to the woman who should receive the award for the worst customer service representative in the Universe, [name removed].

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Kasee,

    I’m sincerely sorry to hear about your poor customer service experience at Flint. Since I often recommend Flint because of their customer service, your experience is especially worrisome to me. I have removed the names since this is our policy, but I’ve also made a note of the name so that I can keep an eye out for other complaints regarding this rep.

    Here are my thoughts:

    1. Perhaps the most troubling part of your report is the lack of communication regarding the funding hold in the first place. I will be looking into Flint’s communication protocols regarding holds, because I find this unacceptable. Funding holds happen – but how the processor handles this delicate matter will make or break the user experience.

    2. Without knowing more about the transaction that was held, it’s hard to say why it happened. Flint does reserve the right to hold any transaction it feels is high-risk or that exceeds per-transaction dollar limit, as do all processors. I know that this is frustrating, but it is definitely legal (for better or worse) and follows Flint’s user agreement terms.

    3. While it is no excuse for the rudeness of your support representative, it’s important to note that any processor will need to have your account information before helping to resolve account-specific issues. Supervisors do not want to be bothered until the first-level rep has done everything possible to resolve the issue. So as much as this rep probably wanted to pass your issue along to someone else (it would have been less work for them, if nothing else), they also needed to follow protocol. Again, not an excuse for rudeness, and I don’t think the rep handled the situation well. But it is something to consider.

    I hope this information helps you to resolve the issue and understand the situation. I’m going to send you an email because I want to follow up with you on this to find out how it turns out.

    Best,
    Tom

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    Samantha

    Hi Tom,

    I occasionally provide hair/make up services from home in addition to my full time work (non-related) I do not have an established business for beauty services, however I am licensed so I do it for friends and family. Someone suggested this may be a good option for convenience, rather than cash/check. Will I receive a statement at the end of the year and be required to claim this low income with my tax return? I would estimate about $1,000-$1500 annually, so not a large amount, I don’t do this or advertise as a business, it’s more of a hobby for me.

    thanks in advance for any info!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Samantha,

    Technically you will be personally required to report any earned income to the IRS during tax time, no matter how little. This is not to say that realistically everyone actually does this – but by the books, you are supposed to.

    For your volume, Flint will not send a report to the IRS. So it is up to you to report (or not report) any earning on your own. Here is the part of Flint’s Terms and Conditions that outlines their protocols here:

    You are responsible for determining any and all taxes assessed, incurred, or required to be collected, paid, or withheld for any reason in connection your use of our software and Service (“Taxes”). You also are solely responsible for collecting, withholding, reporting, and remitting correct Taxes to the appropriate tax authority. If in a given calendar year you receive (i) more than $20,000 in gross amount of payments and (ii) more than 200 payments, we will report annually to the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”), as required by law, your name, business name, address, Tax Identification Number the total dollar amount of the payments you receive in a calendar year, and the total dollar amount of the payments you receive for each month in a calendar year.

    Hope this helps!

    Take care,
    Tom

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    Michael Chambers

    Samantha, I just saw your post from last year and just received 1099-K form from Flint for only $1,200 in transactions.

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    kevin

    We are a physician’s office looking at starting to take credit cards. Our transactions will be for the patients’ copay’s therefore amounts charged will vary between 5.00 and 40.00 per transaction with average probably being 15.00. I don’t anticipate having many transactions since our patients are used to paying by check/cash. That being said I would anticipate no more than 60 said transactions a month. I didn’t know if we should go with a stand alone mobile or a POS. I would appreciate any insight you could provide.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Kevin,

    At that volume, you definitely are better off going for the pay-as-you-go mobile option in terms of best value. A provider like Flint will without a doubt be the best value until you are consistently processing over $2500 per month in card payments. And even then, Flint can sometimes still be the less expensive option. Especially with the transaction size you’re looking at.

    As long as you’ll have a smartphone handy with good service, I would definitely suggest giving Flint a shot. The app is very easy to use and the customer service is much better than the other popular mobile-based providers. Unless you need some more advanced or complex features, there’s no reason to pay the substantially higher fees you’ll see from traditional merchant account/POS providers.

    Good luck!
    Tom

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    Joe

    You said that Flint allows a maximum of $2,000.00 to be process per week. However, Flint’s Terms of Use Agreement says, “If you process more than $1,000 during any trailing seven day period, we may defer depositing the amount in excess of $1,000 for 30 days.”. I am wondering why there’s a $1,000.00 discrepancy between what you are allowed to process in a seven day period before a hold is placed on deposit of funds. Thank you.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Joe,

    I agree this is confusing. Since the Terms are standardized across all account holders, this number is not exactly accurate for everyone, since processing limits will vary. It’s basically just the lowest processing limit possible, which they put in there to cover all bases. They will almost certainly approve you for a higher processing limit than this (usually $2K to start), but they reserve the right to lower the limit to $1K per week and thus hold all transactions over the limit for 30 days. If you submit an additional form, you can get apply to have your limits increased well above $2K per week.

    There are also separate limits for e-invoiced transactions and transactions entered without the camera scan, since these are higher risk. It’s important to note as well that if any transaction is deemed at risk for a chargeback (i.e., is unusually large, doesn’t fit with normal processing habits, etc.), Flint reserves the right to withhold the transaction pending investigation. These are common practices across all processors, but worth noting.

    So bottom line, go by the processing limits that Flint sends you upon account activation. These are the limits that will be enforced. Flint does however reserve the right to lower the limits and withhold any transactions they see as chargeback-prone.

    Hope this helps,
    Tom

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    Greg McIntosh

    Do you have any way to also scan checks, so they will go to you bank account?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Greg,

    The best way to do this is via an app directly from your bank. Many banks offer camera scan deposits via their mobile banking app, including Chase and Bank of America. It’s completely free to use. Check with your bank to see if they offer this feature.

    Other than that, few payment processing mobile apps allow for this anymore. Forte Payments may be the only remaining exception, but their mobile processing is considerably more expensive than Flint.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Randy

    What happens a year from now when card readers in the U.S. are supposed to be “chip and PIN” compatible? Will Flint be able to process chip-based cards? I’m guessing that “taking a picture” of a card’s chip is not the same as actually “connecting” with it.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Randy,

    Technically Flint transactions are processed as card-not-present, not swiped, so the chip and PIN protocol shouldn’t impact Flint’s service as it stands. The liability shift in relation to EMV chip cards only pertains to card-present transactions.

    -TD

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    Anna Kwan

    Much thanks for the detailed review. Do you know what the swipe companies are doing about the new chip-and-pin requirements? Would dongles have to be replaced?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Anna,

    Yes, by fall of 2015 we will see new chip-and-PIN and in some cases chip-and-signature readers in the US from all of the mobile swipe-based processors. In order to protect against fraud liability, users will need to upgrade from the swipers. Many of these companies (like PayPal Here and World Pay) have already released these devices in the UK and Europe. For the chip-and-PIN readers, they are unfortunately bulky and expensive – about the size of a smart phone and communicating via Bluetooth. The chip-and-signature readers are much smaller and less expensive (see iZettle for an example), so I’m hoping that most companies will provide that option. But it depends to some extent on the decisions made by the card issuers/networks – which is information I’m not privy to.

    Check out this write up for a little bit more info on the subject.

    Thanks for reading,
    Tom

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    Marcus Carr

    I tried to sign up for a flint account online and was told that I wasn’t approved for a account. Would you happen to know why? I have an at home collection agency and would like to use flint as my processor instead of the stripe account that I have been using.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Marcus,

    Flint is mostly for in-person transactions. While their invoicing feature does allow you to accept payment from remote clients, I can imagine that if too much of your transaction percentage would be invoiced that they might decline your account. Stripe, on the other hand, is made for card-not-present transactions.

    The other issue could be your business type. I don’t know specifically if/why Flint would consider an at-home collections agency to be high risk, but it’s certainly a possibility and could lead to your account being denied approval.

    Let us know if we can help you find a different solution.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Connie

    Forgive me if you have already answered this question – I travel and sell my art at outdoor venues around the state and occasionally I encounter weak or non existent network service. If I this should be the case and using the Flint services – how would they handle this?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Connie,

    Unfortunately Flint doesn’t offer an offline mode for processing without data or wifi. If you don’t have some form of internet/network access available, you will not be able to process transactions.

    Square does have an offline mode, which allows you to swipe the card offline, and then connect to the web later (within 72 hours) to upload the transactions. There is the risk that the transaction will fail when you connect to the internet, since you can’t verify the transaction without internet, but generally speaking it’s a good option for merchants looking to process offline.

    Another potential option for a mobile processing app that has an offline mode is through GoEMerchant via their M+ Terminal app. I’m not 100% sure what they are charging for rates these days, but it’s probably comparable to Square’s pricing.

    Let me know if I can help you further!
    Tom

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    Lor

    I came across your site initially looking for reviews of the Square mobile card reader. Thank you so much for all of the information. I was able to check out a variety of options before I make a final decision. Again, thanks.

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    Jonathan

    Tom. Read through your reviews and I am very glad to have found your site. You are very knowledgable about these things. I do have a question though. My wife just got into selling Avon and the standard for Avon is to get paid by cash or check but she would like to give her customers the option of using a credit/debit card. She still has very low volume of sales coming in but is trying to increase that. Do you think that Flint would be the best option for her? Also moving forward as her sales volume increases, would Flint continue to be the wiser option if we talk to them to get the limits set higher if needed?

    Kind regards,
    Jonathan

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Jonathan,

    Thanks for checking out our site! I hope the reviews and articles have proven helpful in your search. Flint would work well for your wife in this case. The thing that makes me most confident about Flint is their account stability. Where some other providers have a reputation for withholding funds for months or suddenly terminating accounts, this happens much more rarely with Flint. So for businesses that can’t afford to have to wait for their money, I think Flint is most reliable.

    As far as later on as volume grows, Flint will likely continue to be the most reliable, hassle-free and cost-effective option. If she starts processing over $5K monthly, it might be worth running the numbers against a different processor quote – but generally speaking Flint is the best for low-volume/sporadic processing because they are entirely pay-as-you-go with no admin/maintenance fees.

    Take care and good luck!
    Tom

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    Lisa

    Thank you very much Tom for your detailed information regarding the various mobile credit card processing. I’ve read through just about all of your reviews and I have decided to choose Flint. I thought about using PayPal Here as a secondary choice for the check capture, but it looks like they have cancelled that option. Keep up the great work!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Thank you Lisa!

    Yes, I was disappointed to see PayPal Here drop that feature. Your bank may have a mobile app that allows you to make check deposits using your phone’s camera. Here’s a page with a list of some banks that offer this feature.

    Thanks again for reading. Let us know how things are going from time to time!

    -Tom

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    ben daily

    I gave a Samsung galaxy mini 3 (model smg730a) an issue I have been having is that when I try to ‘play’ / test flint and scan my card it kicks back an error that the camera is on use by another app and has to be turned off before flint will work. have you heard of that error or how to solve it

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Ben,

    I haven’t heard about that error before. My suggestions would be to turn the phone off and back on. If that doesn’t work, uninstall and reinstall the app. Make sure you don’t have any apps running in the background that might conflict with camera use privileges. You can also see what Flint has to say about this by calling or emailing them through their help page. Let us know how it goes!

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Loribeth

    My daughter’s Girl Scout troop used Flint during their cookie sales last year. Easy to use, convenient, and the least expensive option we could find. Increased our sales by more than 10%!! We love Flint!

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    Maurice

    Lately I haven’t been receiving funds in my bank account?? Flint used to work fine months ago and send deposits though all of a sudden they stopped? Any input/comments about this? Thank you

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Maurice,

    That’s very strange. I haven’t heard any other reports of this problem. You’ll probably have to wait until tomorrow to get someone on the phone over there, but I’d definitely recommend that you contact Flint to see why deposits are not coming through. Let us know how it goes.

    Take care,
    Tom

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    Ryan Shipley

    Quick question. Debit vs Credit fees. I notice the debit fees are cheaper. Traditionally with a debit card your customer enters a PIN. How do you get the debit rate if your customer uses a debit card? Does Flint know this on the back end or is there something you have to do proactively?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Ryan,

    Flint differentiates on the back end via info from the payment processor, no need to do anything on your end. Debit cards won’t require a PIN entry with Flint, but will require a signature (as will credit).

    Let us know if you have any other questions!

    -Tom

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    Ewanda Thompson

    Is there a standard monthly fee for using the Flint service or are you just charged per swipe? I am a very small business with low volume but do find the need to accept credit cards from clients every once in awhile. Thanks!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Ewanda,

    No monthly fee whatsoever, no setup fees or early termination fees. It’s entirely pay-as-you-go, meaning you only pay for the transactions you process. Most mobile processors work like this, but Flint is my favorite in most cases.

    Let us know if we can help further!

    Best,
    Tom

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    Sara

    First, like everyone else, I am so happy I found your website. I work as the Fundraising Assistant for a smal local non-profit and we have two major events a year where we need to have a mobile credit card processing thingy. At our last event an few weeks ago I used the mobile attach to your phone card swiper thingy and it worked great, except when I tried later to figure out who all those transactions were from. It made it impossible to enter into QuickBooks and even worse from the non-profit viewpoint, some of the transactions where large amounts and I had no way to contact them to give them a “thank you for you generous support” letter. Does Flint or any mobile credit card thingy allow for the capture of the customer, or in our case donors, even basic info like name and email address?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Sara,

    I’ve also found that oversight frustrating. Flint does a pretty good job of solving this problem. First, you can automatically sync transactions with a QuickBooks Online account. If you make a sale to (or receive a donation from) a client that already exists in your QuickBooks account, then the transaction will automatically register as belonging to that client (as determined by their email address). If the client is not recognized as existing in your QuickBooks account already, a new customer will automatically be created. While there is no field to enter the customer name in the app, you can include it as a reminder in the memo of the emailed receipt. (For instance, you can have it say Thank you [Name]!) I believe that the memo will be automatically synced with QuickBooks as well. See this page for more information.

    Thanks for reading!
    Tom

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    Diane

    I’m a stay at home mom and I run an upscale party catering company. It’s not a registered business just something I do to stay busy. I’m in need of a mobile card reader that can accept $1500 per transactions. I set up at least 3 parties a week which totals $4500 a week. Is flint for me or would you suggest something else? I can not have my funds frozen or held because the $1500 goes towards buying the party supplies, sending out invites, food, ect… So I need something that can work for my company. Thanks again for your awesome reviews.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Diane,

    With that volume, you might consider going the traditional merchant account route rather than the mobile, pay-as-you-go option. Depending on your exact processing habits, you stand to save a substantial amount by processing with an interchange-plus plan rather than a fixed-rate plan.

    Flint does a good job of preventing withheld funds, but I’m always a little wary of sending merchants with large transactions to easy-access providers – even Flint. With your large transaction size and low number of transactions, you might consider Payment Depot in terms of best value. You’ll have to buy the $49 mobile card reader, but your savings would pay you back almost immediately. They use the RoamPay mobile app, which works well and is reliable.

    Aside from that, CDGcommerce has a nice and cost-effective mobile processing option that would also provide you with the necessary stability.

    Or if you really like the look of Flint’s features (in particular their integrated email invoicing feature is pretty unique), I would just suggest that you talk to a representative about your processing volume and the size of your transactions to make sure that your processing limits are set up properly. This might require some additional paperwork.

    Thanks for reading, and please feel free to reach out if we can help you further!

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Ben

    I have one lingering question. What is to stop an employee from creating their own account and ringing up occasional sales that deposit money into their account!!

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Ben,

    Since that would constitute serious fraud and theft, the law is the first and foremost thing that stops employees from doing that. It’s also not a very clean way to commit fraud, since there is a major paper trail. But beyond that, it’s the same thing that stops employees from pocketing cash and doing sales off the books: oversight and integrity. It’s up to business owners to make sure they are not being stolen from, and to hire trustworthy staff.

    Flint does offer employee accounts, so that each employee (up to 10) can have unique log-in information so they can see only their own sales and so that they do not have access to any sensitive account information. This allows you to track the sales of individual employees very easily.

    Hope this helps!
    -Tom

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    Norma

    Hi Tom,
    Wow, I’m really impressed with your site. You are now the go-to for me regarding the world of merchant know-how. I have been a part time independent contractor and consultant for many years, doing a variety of services in the performing and healing/spiritual arts. I am hired by individuals, businesses, organizations and institutions.

    Now that I am finally putting up a website and supporting my work to be more widely known, I’ve been considering these different payment service options. From what I can figure at this point, having a mobile app would support some of my clients when I’m on location with them. The invoicing would be a definite plus as well, for up front deposits and billing. My needs are fairly simple since I don’t yet have any products I’m selling.

    I was mostly considering Pay Pal but felt uneasy with all the negative reviews. I’m a big fan of good customer service so was happy to read your review of Flint. I’m going to give them a try and see how it goes.

    I have one question though, in their agreement stipulations, about the Applicable Card Association Rules which I’ve copied below. Could you tell me what they mean by the difference in chargeback rights of the buyer when the card is considered not present such as in the case of Flint? Does this apply to all the mobile apps or just this one because it does not use a swiper?

    Applicable Card Association Rules
    You acknowledge that (y) all Card transactions are processed as “card not present” transactions, even where the Consumer is at the physical point of sale and (z) under the Card Association Rules, a buyer has different Chargeback rights for “card not present” transactions than for transactions where the buyer physically presents the card to the seller.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Norma,

    So glad you’ve found the reviews helpful! I should have explained that piece of the Terms in the review (going to update it this week).

    Since Flint doesn’t read the magnetic strip on cards, all transactions process as card-not-present. (Mobile processors that use a swiper will process swiped transaction as card-present.) Flint does a great job of keeping service inexpensive despite this, most notably by charging a more reasonable rate for debit than other mobile processors, but it’s true that swiped transactions are considered easier to defend in chargeback disputes.

    Here’s the best insight I can offer you on this. Because Flint requires a signature, expiration date, CVV code and zip code, you are well-protected and will have firm ground to stand on when fighting a chargeback. But the fact remains that swiped transactions are generally considered more secure by the card networks, and they will automatically reject certain chargebacks (depending on the reason code submitted by the card issuer) if the card was swiped.

    The difference in rights and arbitration protocols of card-present versus card-absent or key-entered transactions are complex and vary depending on the reason code submitted with the chargeback and the specific card network. For instance, the type of documents you and your disputing customer will be asked to submit may be different, and the reason codes allowed to be submitted may be different.

    So you don’t lose any major rights by processing with Flint instead of swiping with PayPal Here, and the company really does all they can to make sure that, if a chargeback occurs, they have all the necessary information to fight it on your behalf. That said, even for swiped transactions, chargebacks are often decided in favor of the consumer. The most important thing for both you and your processor to do is to actively work to prevent chargebacks. And in this regard, I think Flint performs well. To learn more about chargebacks and how to prevent them, check out our article here.

    Hope this helps!

    -Tom

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    scott H

    Hi. Just discovered your site. I am owner of a food truck and we just secured an agreement to sell at an outdoor public space in CHicago. We’ve been using square for our credit card transactions…the public venue is requiring that we offer paper receipts for all transactions and we record all transactions. Can you recommend a good system for me. Was looking at shopkeep but the reviews are not that good. How about FLint? We have just about 6 items that we sell.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Scott,

    If you’re happy with Square, you don’t have to switch. If you use Square on an iPad, you can connect a receipt printer (but not with the smartphone app). With the Square app, all transactions are recorded through the online reporting feature (even cash and check if you choose to input these transactions), and can even be exported to QuickBooks for bookkeeping purposes. Cash drawer connectivity is also available here – again, only with iPad, not through the smartphone app.

    If you’re looking to switch, I can tell you that Spark Pay also offers receipt printer connectivity. You can even use a receipt printer through your smartphone with Spark Pay, a nice advantage if you don’t currently process with a tablet. Cash drawer connectivity is available here also, and will work with the smartphone app to the best of my knowledge. Again, online reporting comes standard.

    Finally, PayPal Here offers a slightly larger selection of compatible printers and comparable app features. So I’d recommend checking out both Spark Pay and PayPal Here for mobile processing.

    I would not recommend Flint for you, since no receipt printer or cash drawer connectivity are supported.

    Good luck!
    Tom

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    Tom DeSimone

    NOTE: It just occurred to me that since you run a food truck, you probably won’t be able to use printers that require a router/LAN. In that case, you should give PayPal Here top priority, since their app is compatible with a Bluetooth printer. Square’s iPad app is also compatible with Bluetooth printers.

    You might also consider a more complete POS solution like from NRC Silver. You’re looking at a much higher expense for something like that though, and might be more than you need.

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    JB

    Excellent job Tom! Thank you for helping us navigate the slippery slope of dealing with banks and cheap tech dongles and their apps which not coincidentally charges you more when THEIR hardware or software doesn’t scan your customer’s card correctly. Hilarious. The information regarding Flint is VERY appealing. We have Paypal in place and it works fairly well but we aren’t thrilled with them nor their expense. Intuit was such a nightmare right out of the gate we fired them AND ditched QB Online out of principal. We don’t tolerate inexcusable customer service. We just received our PayAnywhere reader yesterday when I discovered your review on Flint. I haven’t and likely will not even open the PayAnywhere package after reading how horrendous their services have continually been. They sounded pretty rough and then I read the chargeback fine they hit you with. Nope. You’re fired too. I plan to contact Flint this evening and see how it goes. Again, thanks for the very informative information on these various companies and the real ins and outs of dealing with them as a consumer. Hats off to you sir. JB

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    Miriam Weinstein

    Hmmmm. Glad I read your review. I expect to process very few payments, but they will be keyed in, and many of them, over $500. And no signatures… So if a payees bill is say $850, can it somehow be broken into two payments, or should I just forget Flint? So far, I don’t have an iphone, but I expect to get one shortly. I get the impression that Square is more for regular type merchants – cafes, boutiques etc.
    Incidentally, I’ve called them twice and I believe emailed once without any response.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Miriam,

    The higher transaction size shouldn’t be an issue with Flint, but you’ll need to make sure that they set you up with transaction limits that will accommodate your business in terms of weekly volume and per transaction limits. Getting your limits increased above the default limits will take an additional form, but it’s not too complicated. The trouble is that for payments accepted within the app, you’ll need a customer signature. If you’d like to accept payment when the customer is not present (i.e. no signature), you can use Flint’s invoicing feature. With this you send an invoice via email to the customer, and then they pay it directly from there. You can create invoices using Flint on the computer or via a smartphone.

    Most mobile processors have trouble with card-not-present transactions, since the risk for fraud goes way up in these cases. But based on what I’ve seen, Flint does perhaps the best job of making sure your funds aren’t frozen for long periods of time, which is a major risk with Square.

    Splitting up a card payment is strictly forbidden by all processors, and could result in immediate termination of your account. So I don’t recommend it.

    Hope this helps!
    Tom

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    Carolyn

    We have a childcare / learning center. We are just now preparing to take credit cards and this seemed like a good option.
    Should we set up a separate bank account for FLINT?
    When someone pays using FLINT, is it clear for whom the payment was made?
    Can we set up a PAY button on our website that would use FLINT?
    Thanks for the help.
    Carolyn

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Carolyn,

    It’s not necessary to open a business bank account to use Flint, but there are advantages to keeping personal and business finances separate (see this article from Legal Zoom for examples).

    When you run a card through the Flint app, the name that appears on your customer’s credit card statement will be your business name. On the other end, Flint also makes it easy for you to collect email addresses from your customers for identification.

    Flint offers emailed invoicing, but they don’t have integrated pay button or online payment options. If you’re interested in this as part of a mobile processing program, I’d suggest using PayPal/PayPal Here instead. You could also use two separate services – one to power online payments, and one for mobile payments.

    Hope this helps! Good luck.

    -Tom

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    Business Owner

    We signed up our*business*, which is an LLC (limited liability company). But then when we logged on and later communicated with tech support, we found out that the account is not really a *business* account in the name of our *business*, but is instead a *personal* account in the name of our employee who filled out the application and supplied the last four digits of their social.

    That is bad.

    The purpose for creating an LLC or a small corporation is to have a *business* that stands alone, apart from its employees.

    Since Flint evidently insists on setting up accounts for businesses as personal accounts in the name of one of the employees of the business, it is no good for businesses that are LLCs or corporations.

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    Tom DeSimone

    We don’t usually post comments without a real name and active email address, but in this case I want to reiterate a point made in the review. Businesses can use Flint’s Business Information Request Form when signing up to avoid having an employee’s personal credit play a role.

    -Tom

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    Tom DeSimone

    To have additional comments posted, you must follow our User Review/Comment Policy.

    Thank you.

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    Lori

    Thank you, Tom. So let’s say I sign up for Flint today. How do I “test” it if my business won’t be up and running until about Aug 1st? Do I use my own credit card and charge a dollar or something? You mention test driving it in different settings. Is this because the phone connection may not be strong where I test it? That shouldn’t be any issue, as Verizon is strong here in western new York. What about a different setting could cause the app not to work correctly, any idea?

    And thank you for the info about the checks. I think for me, it would just be better to bring them to my bank and deposit them directly. Then they’re not in my hands, wondering what to do with them! lol

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Lori,

    Yes, signal strength is definitely an important factor, and it sounds like you’ll be fine in that department. You might also want to try the app in different lighting conditions (in places that you’ll be accepting cards, or similar) and with different scan settings (there are a number of customizable settings in the app that are worth experimenting with).

    With the Flint app, they have a test mode that you can try without actually running any transactions through the network. You can also try running live transactions on your own card or the cards of friends and family for $1. I wouldn’t suggest running many transactions on your own card because this may trigger an account hold for suspicious activity (some people try to illegally get cash advances this way). Running other people’s cards is usually better for testing purposes.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    Lori

    I have a Motorola Droid Maxx (as opposed to the Razr Maxx). I can find NO company that will specifically tell me that their card acceptance program will work with my phone. I’m not able to change phones due to the cost.
    How does one handle it when companies say “most phones”? If I’m out in the field and it doesn’t work, I’d be in a real mess!
    The second question is regarding personal checks. If scanned in, does that mean that we’re certain the money is in the customer’s bank account to cover it? What do you do with the check after scanning? I certainly wouldn’t want to have to keep it! Could we stamp it, “Deposited Electronically” or something?
    Sorry for so many questions…

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Lori,

    In many cases the only reliable way to figure out if a processing app will work on your phone is to test it. That’s the only way to really know for sure. For free services like Flint, you can sign up and test drive it with no risk. If you wanted to try an app that is not free to sign up for, then I would suggesting asking customer service for demo access. Most services will have demo credentials to let you see if it works for you. Try it out for a week in different settings to make sure it works reliably for you.

    As for checks, most services will only allow you to record check payments, but not actually deposit them in-app. PayPal Here is a notable exception, since you can actually deposit checks through the app by using the camera scan. It basically works exactly like depositing a check via your bank’s mobile app. The check could still bounce, but the law would be on your side of course. My advice would be to keep the physical checks at least until the deposits clear. All of the normal risks associated with taking checks are still present.

    If your phone doesn’t end up being able to work with these apps, you can sign up for the old fashioned call-in cell phone processing. Not many processors still support this option, but last time I checked GotMerchant.com does.

    Good luck, and let us know how it goes.
    -Tom

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    Jack

    @Tom DeSimone

    Just discovered your site an hour or so ago, and have been immersed in your very comprehensive reviews of mobile payment processors. Just to comment on your answer to Lori, I am also in Canada, and have verified that Paypal Here works in Canada (although their website indicates that Android is not yet supported). I need to find out whether the Android issue is a Canadian limitation, or if their information (or yours) is incorrect in that regard.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Jack,

    Thank you for the info! I’m surprised to hear that PayPal Here currently works in Canada. I knew they did a limited Canadian release in early 2012, but hadn’t seen the service promoted for Canadian merchants since then. Thank you for letting me know! Do you happen to have a link to any marketing for PayPal Here in Canada, or other official releases? I haven’t been able to find any.

    Thanks for stopping by,
    Tom

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    Tom DeSimone

    I would just like to clarify for readers that, as of July 2014, a PayPal representative has confirmed for me that PayPal Here is not currently available in Canada. Anyone with info to the contrary – aside from the preliminary Canadian release in 2012 – should please contact me directly at tom@merchantmaverick.com. Thank you!

    TD

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    David Balderrama

    Hi Tom,
    I recently became acquainted with Merchant Maverick a few days ago and I have found the reviews very useful and informative. I am a part-time birthday party entertainer who would like to start accepting credit/debit cards as a payment option, preferably with my Android phone. I only do a few shows per month so monthly fees would not be in my best interest. I would use a merchant account for 1) getting a deposit for a show at the time of booking (done most likely from my home) and 2) collecting the final payment the day of the show (via swiping / scanning a card). The ability to e-mail a customized receipt / invoice with my logo would be a big plus. I really like the reviews for Flint but do you think that would be my best option? Does Flint offer any punch-in options that I could use to collect a deposit since I won’t have direct access to the client card? I appreciate your time and advice. Dave

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Dave,

    I’m so glad you’ve found our reviews helpful! It sounds like going the mobile route will make most sense for you.

    Card-not-present transactions can be tricky with mobile processors, often triggering funding holds for one to three months. Flint does allow keyed-in transactions, but they still require a customer signature. To accept payments when you will not be face-to-face with the customer, Flint’s invoicing feature works very well. You can send customized invoices (with your company logo and contact info, plus memos if you choose) from your computer or phone, and customers pay directly from the digital invoice, so you don’t have to deal with the card info at all. Emailed receipts have the same customization options (logo, website, business information, item descriptions). No added fee for using this feature, just the normal processing fee.

    I think Flint would work well for you. The only notable limitations are (1) limited inventory management, and (2) can’t process AmEx or Discover cards. But most people who use AmEx/Discover will have a standard Visa/MC card handy. And for your type of business, complex inventory management is probably not an issue.

    Flint is free to try, so I’d suggest you sign up and test it out. See if it suits you. My second choice would be PayPal Here. Last I checked they can do card-not-present keyed-in transactions, but they don’t prefer it and withholding of funds is common.

    Good luck, and please let us know how it goes!

    -Tom

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    Lorrie

    Does flint work for Canadian companies as well?

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Lorrie,

    Flint is only in the US for now. I haven’t found a mobile processor that I love for Canadian merchants yet. Helcim works well for mobile, but comes with a monthly fee. Even so, if you will be processing regularly they might make sense for you.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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    ML

    After a horrible experience with Square that took two months to resolve, I am looking for a new provider. I was going to go with Spark Pay because my main credit card is Capital One and I have always been happy with their service. While researching, Flint came up and sounds interesting too. I am a very small, part time business, selling more on a seasonal basis than daily. Any thoughts on Flint vs Spark Pay?

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    Tom DeSimone

    I tried and liked both Flint and SparkPay, but personally lean toward Flint. I find the Flint app very, very reliable – plus incredibly easy to use.

    In my opinion, you should sign up for Flint and test it out. Since no card reader is needed, you can do this with no delay. See if you like the camera scan for reading cards. If the app suits you and you don’t mind that it won’t process AmEx or Discover, I think Flint is the way to go. It doesn’t have much in the way of inventory management, but it doesn’t sound like this will be an issue for you. And now if you use QuickBooks Online for bookkeeping, Flint will sync your records automatically – a feature I really like. If you process a fair amount of debit, Flint will almost certainly be the less expensive option.

    As for SparkPay, I found the card reader to work very reliably. The app is nice, with similar features to Flint, but perhaps a little better equipped for use as a light retail POS (has better peripheral connectivity). If you’ll need sophisticated inventory management, it’s definitely the way to go since it can integrate with StitchLabs. The app is a little less intuitive and smooth than Flint for me, but still good. If you think you’ll be processing over $1500 or so per month in card transactions, it’s nice to have the $9.95 per month pricing option to get lower rates. But remember, Flint will give you the same rate (1.95%) on debit transactions with no monthly fee.

    Good luck, and let me know how it goes!
    Tom

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    Stacy

    I love the fact that I get a live person during business hours. No pesky reader, which works when it wants to. I love square register, but they better look out. Flint is in for my businesses.

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    Jeff

    Just to clarify, Merchants do get their own unique MIDs when signing up for Flint.

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    Tom DeSimone

    Hi Tyus,

    It’s possible that the first representative you spoke to via email had initiated the process for a manual deposit but didn’t realize the account had become inactive, leading to the longer than expected wait and subsequent confusion when you contacted customer service via phone. That doesn’t explain why the account became inactive in the first place, though. I had not heard any reports of this problem before now, so I’m not sure what the cause is.

    You may want to send an email to customer support asking how to avoid having your account deemed inactive, and what you can do to change the status to active again as quickly as possible. It’s possible that this happened as an error.

    Please keep us posted on this.

    Good luck,
    Tom

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